On a long weekend, you’re most likely to head out on a road trip, visit family and friends, or simply laze around the house. Why not shake things up and host a garage sale? You’ll declutter your home and earn extra money—that’s two birds with one stone. It’s also a great way to bond with the whole family. 

Here’s a handy checklist to help you organize a successful garage sale:

Planning Stage

Jot down all the essentials and must-do’s.

kids garage sale

What to sell

  • Old toys (not broken)
  • Unopened/unused wedding gifts 
  • Extra utensils
  • Unused clothes
  • Books and magazines
  • Furniture (chairs, cabinets, bed)
  • Power tools

Decide on your Location

  • Check the weather ahead of time and make a contingency plan in case of rain
  • Secure a permit to run a garage sale from your city or town hall (as necessary)

Inform Everyone

  • Post about your weekend garage sale on social media
  • Hang up posters on community bulletin boards
  • On your posters, make it clear which payment options you accept
  • Have the kids create the flyers and post the flyers throughout your neighborhood (always ask for permission first!)

Labelling/Sorting Stage

Properly label and sort all products so that customers can easily identify each item. 

price tag stickers

  • Color-coordinate items according to price, item type, and category
  • Write a short description of the item if it’s rare to help show value for the product
  • Put smaller items in front for easy access and visibility
  • Put larger items where they can easily be carried out

Pricing Stage

Make it easy for your customers to  identify how much each item costs.

  • Use large price tags
  • Put up a sign stating “cash only” to make your customers aware of what forms of payment you accept
  • Label which items are negotiable and which ones have fixed prices
  • Make a visit to the bank to withdraw cash and keep change on hand

Garage Sale Stage

  • Manage areas of your garage sale by assigning each zone to a family member
  • Always smile when welcoming buyers
  • Tell backstories about the items to make them more interesting

Post-Garage Sale Stage

  • Gather leftover items and donate them to charity
  • Huddle up the family and decide together what you will do with your sales

Bonus Tips:

  1. Put items you think will sell fast in the center. This will encourage shoppers to go through all of your items.
  2. Give the items a good dusting/polishing before displaying them for sale. 
  3. Throughout the neighborhood, place directional signs to your home. Or, if you want to go the extra mile, create a map to hand out to houses in outside neighborhoods.
  4. Give out package deals like “buy one, get one free” or “get three for the price of one” on items you want to sell fast. You can also bundle slow-selling products with top-sellers to boost sales.
  5. Give discounts to the first 50 buyers.
  6. Tools will sell like hotcakes, so be sure to price them competitively.
  7. Do not accept cheques, as doing so could be risky. Make it clear to your shoppers that you only accept cash.
  8. Everybody loves free products, so label some items as free. This will pique people’s curiosity to check out your entire inventory. While they’re at it, they’ll surely find something to purchase.
  9. Let the kids set up a lemonade stand to earn extra money and to draw in customers.

After the sale, your garage will be so much cleaner and clutter-free. To complete the refreshed look, how about a sleek, new garage door? Or, perhaps you’re looking for skillful garage door maintenance and repairs. We can make it happen. Contact your nearest NationServe location to learn about the latest garage door sales.

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