Best Garage Sale Tips Ever

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Garage sales can be a fun, profitable, and enjoyable part of life, especially when moving or doing some Spring Cleaning. They can also be hectic and disorganized (not the goal of a garage sale). Hopefully the following info helps inspire you and ease your burden.

Helpful Links

Why I Like Garage Sales

  • I like to buy stuff cheap.
  • Sometimes I prefer used stuff – then I don’t worry about scratches and dents.
  • Get to know your neighbors and the people of your community.
  • Help a brother out! Depending on the price, it’s like your own mini-Goodwill store. It’s nice to see who gets your stuff next – and that it actually gets into someone’s hands.

How-To Post on Craigslist

  1. Sign-in if you have or want a Craigslist account: – if not, skip this step
  2. Visit
  3. Select “for sale
  4. Select “garage & moving sales (no online or virtual sales here please)
  5. Enter text and include at least 1 photo, even if it’s just of your neighborhood entrance or one of the many items.
    1. You may want to include your phone number, link to a map, and/or written driving directions.
    2. Keep in mind this is Public, not Private

You may want to create a free website or photo album online first. Then you can link to it in Craigslist or wherever else you may want to advertise it online.

Other names for garage sales

  • Yard sale
  • Moving sale
  • Rummage sale
  • White elephant sale
  • Tag sale
  • Junk sale
  • Bargain sale


  • Make sure your homeowner’s insurance is in effect
  • Does your local government or subdivision require prior notice or permitting?
  • What are the laws regarding posting signs at intersections?
  • Can you advertise for free in your local newspaper?
  • Be prepared to give stuff away (i.e. wheel-and-deal, or literally giving it away)
    • Garage sale shoppers are there for a deal, not a shopping mall-like experience – expect haggling
    • Honestly, if it doesn’t sell, what else are you going to do with this stuff?
    • You finally got it out of the house and into the garage. Take the final step – the donation center and trash can are your friends (and freedom)!
  • Will you offer delivery service?
    • At least think about what you might do if someone asks
    • Don’t consider delivering anything that isn’t terribly large or dirty – use common sense
  • Have painting tarps or another backup plan for rain or other weather interruptions
    • If you reschedule, update your online advertising and take down your incorrect signage
    • If someone comes anyways, tell them the new schedule instead of having a 1 person garage sale (safety first)
  • Are any battery-operated or electrical plug-in items for sale? Have a way to show they are in working order.
  • Have parking space available
  • Include times and days/dates
  • As soon as your signs are up, your yard is FAIR GAME

Aim for Success

Success can mean money, fun, and freedom from clutter. Do your best to get rid of it or just give it away.

  • Invite your neighbors or piggy-back off a nearby Neighborhood Garage Sale
  • Let little kids have their own table
  • Sell or give away bottled water, soda, lemonade, coffee, cookies, candy, or your homemade craft items
    • Stay longer
    • Feel happy
    • Buy a cookie leads to Buy a drink
    • Increase profits
    • Eat them all yourself
    • Beware of technically-required food handling, distributing, packaging, or other permits/laws
  • Post a flyer offline
    • Grocery store
    • Pet store
    • Bank
    • Restaurant
  • Have copies of your flyer at the garage sale to take with them if its a multi-weekend sale
  • Provide shade on hot days
    • For you
    • Your shoppers
    • And your stuff
  • If your house is for sale, make sure it’s in showing condition and signage is visible and inviting
  • Have a backup cashier (i.e. eagle eye)
  • Have your business cards on display
  • Use different colored stickers for different sellers/children
  • Use common sense regarding bad guys (no public restrooms, no telephone usage, etc.)
  • Group similar items together
    • Price similar items similarly (e.g. “All books on this table $1”)
  • Clean the items if you want to attract top dollar or want more bargaining power
  • Find the same or similar item on eBay or Craigslist and print it out to show value/comparison
  • The more QUANTITY, the better for “drive-by-ers”
    • PRICING is more appropriate than QUALITY – you’re trying to sell everything that’s for sale, regardless of condition – the alternative is Goodwill or landfill
    • Make sure your big items can be seen by drive-by-ers
  • Sell sets together – don’t split them up – it may be better to give them 4 for the price of 6 instead of breaking up the set

Have fun

And call me to sell your house! 🙂

Cliff Paulick: 918-409-2543

3 Responses to "Best Garage Sale Tips Ever"
  1. PR says:

    Thanks for all the tips and helpful links! Another link that I would add to the list is It’s an online tool that helps you make sure your items aren’t recalled, which is especially important since you don’t want others to use unsafe items and selling recalled products is now illegal. Hope you and your readers find it useful.

  2. @PR: Thanks so much for the suggestion. I agree with your comment! What was your favorite part of the article?

  3. PR says:

    @Cliff: Glad you liked the suggestion! The video was very informative, and the step-by-step instructions for how to post on Craigslist were great!

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