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Great Hints and Advice for a Successful Garage Sale

written by: nataliajones•edited by: Jean Scheid•updated: 9/11/2010

If you want to turn your clutter into cash, there is no better way than to plan a garage sale. These garage sale pricing hints will help you to make the most out of your efforts.

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    Garage Sale Pricing Hints A garage sale can be a spur of the moment attempt to get rid of your unwanted possessions, but this kind of attitude generally does not produce the best results. If you want to host a garage sale that is well-attended and yields the most amount of money possible the you need to put a bit of effort into your planning. One of the ways to really maximize your income from a garage sale is to take a serious approach to your pricing strategy. The following garage sale pricing hints can help even a novice salesperson to end the day with an overflowing cash tin.

    Know the Value of Your Items

    Before you start slapping prices on items arbitrarily, it pays to find out what the items are really worth. You may have stumbled across a few collectibles in your attic or basement that can slip away from you for next to nothing if you are not informed about their true value. If you have items that you plan to sell at your garage sale that you are not familiar with, or that you may have inherited from family members, it is best to do a bit of research before you decide on a price. Searching eBay listings or simply doing an Internet search for similar items might be enough to help you to come up with a suggested selling price, but if you have an item that has a bit of history you should have it appraised before setting it out at your next garage sale.

    Set Your Prices Strategically

    Another useful tip is to set your prices with the consumer in mind; this is essential garage sale pricing advice you should implement. People like to think they are getting a bargain so it's often a good idea to build a little bargaining room into your list prices. That way if a potential buyer wants to negotiate you can safely knock off anywhere from 50 cents to a dollar without feeling the pinch. Of course, your sticker prices should not be so inflated that they discourage queries and bids because this defeats the purpose.

    Label Items Clearly

    Instead of grouping like items into price categories you might find more success from individually pricing and labeling each item. This is certainly more work but it usually pays off in the end. There are two simple reasons why this strategy can make you more money. Firstly, when you label each item individually buyers are not immediately drawn to compare the price of the item they are interested in alongside all the others that are going for the same price, and they are much more likely to judge the item on the basis on its own merit. Secondly, garage sales can be confusing for both buyers and sellers so if you don't label each item individually, and a buyer picks up an item to inspect it and then places it back in the wrong section, it could be sold for the wrong price. You stand to lose quite a bit of money if the replacement spot goes against your original price.

    Advertise to Get a Great Turnout

    It is a fact that people feed off the enthusiasm of other buyers so the more people that turn up for your garage sale, the better your chances of maximizing your revenue. A poorly attended garage sale usually does not bring in a lot of cash quite simply because there are less potential buyers and less people to drive prices up.

    Watch the Weather

    Finally, it should go without saying that your garage sale revenue will prosper on days with brilliant weather, while it can be completely dampened by interrupting showers. People don't like shopping in the rain and you also run the risk of damaging your merchandise from exposure. It is a good idea to make sure you have a bright weather forecast on the day you plan to have your garage sale.

    These garage sale pricing hints are all easy to implement and they can really have a positive impact on your earnings.

    Image: Arvind Balaraman / FreeDigitalPhotos.net