Easy tips to bring in more cash and get rid of clutter
1. Display items attractively
Display your items so that they’re usable and easily visible. A box of books won’t sell as well as the same books displayed neatly on a shelf, where buyers can see all the titles without digging. Don’t sell your telescope in the box—set it up so buyers can play a little bit. (If you’re worried about it getting damaged, set it up on top of a table or tape it down). For big-ticket items, print out a favorable product review from Amazon or Consumer Reports and set it near the price tag.
2. Set prices before you haggle
I actually enjoy the back-and-forth of haggling, but you’ll save time and establish a stronger negotiating position if you display a price by every item. (It’s also a good way for the family to get on the same page if you value your items differently). Price most of your items at $5 or less, and include a healthy quantity of items for under $1.
3. Offer concessions
A lemonade stand or a cheap box of donuts can do wonders to populate your garage sale, and more traffic means more sales. It’s also a good opportunity to teach kids about money and work, by having them run the stand. It’s the same principle behind the sample booths at grocery stores: eating snacks releases hunger hormones that get people in a buying mood.
4. Accept credit cards
People don’t often carry cash anymore, and inhibitions about buying are stronger when a buyer has to hand over paper money. Check out products like Intuit’s merchant services; you can get a free credit card reader for your Android or iPhone, and you’ll get way more business when people know they can pay with a card. Make sure to mention it on all your advertisements.
5. Do a group sale with another family
The bigger your inventory, the more attractive it is to browsing buyers. If you can pool resources with another family or two for a big yard sale, you’ll draw a bigger crowd and everyone will sell more. Mention that it’s a group effort on your signage—people are more likely to show up for an “event” than a single family’s yard sale.
Shawna Davies is a staff writer for Going Cellular. She has a talent for organization and helping people navigate new technology. She’s a confessed gadget freak, but when she gets out of the house, she loves spending time at the lake with her husband and young son. They live in Beaumont, Texas.