Moving can be a rough business for all involved, especially when the homeowners are planning an estate or yard sale before setting out to their new home. Knowing what items will sell and how to price them, which items to simply donate, and when to mark prices down always takes a little research. Advertising is important as well, but if it isn’t done correctly it can actually hurt the sale rather than help it. Here are a few tips to help make sure your moving sale is a success.
The Must-Go Pile
The first step to any successful yard, garage or moving sale is to decide what will actually be up for sale. For furniture and knickknacks, it is a good policy to inspect the item in question thoroughly. If there are cracks, breaks, missing pieces or serious malfunctions, the item is unlikely to draw any interest. Buyers are generally looking for cheap or gently used items. If a long distance move is just around the corner, consider parting with small pieces of furniture that can be easily (and inexpensively) replaced upon arrival at the new home.
Recruit Friends and Family
Once the items that will be for sale have begun to accumulate, reach out to friends and family for help. Yard and estate sales are quite a bit of work, and many hands will make light work. Having trustworthy people around to make sure nothing is stolen or damaged is a good idea, and leaves the owner free to haggle with buyers, take payments, and otherwise supervise the overall sale. Be wary of charging too much for items, however. If the price is too high, the furniture or keepsake may be overlooked and wind up not selling.
Advertise, Advertise, Advertise
For many who spend their weekends moving from yard sale to yard sale, the newspaper, social media sites, advertisement sites and street signs are the main avenues to find when and where a sale is taking place. Be sure to take advantages of everything available to get the word out. Weekends are the best time to plan a yard or estate sale, simply because many people have weekends off. When it comes time for the big day, hang some colorful and attention-grabbing signs in the neighborhood to attract attention to your sale.
Pristine and Presentable
The setup of a yard sale is important. The average shopper is unlikely to stop and look around and give the sale a chance if the first thing visible from the curb is a box of old, outdated junk. Used toys, dated figurines and even boxes of clothes that have been rifled through several times can drive potential customers away.
Be sure that everything is neat and organized, and don’t be afraid to use your helpful volunteers for periodic clean-up and tidying of the merchandise. Find an old clothes rack and keep garments orderly. Arrange knickknacks neatly on a table, each one clearly visible. It might be a good idea to offer refreshments, as well. A bowl of chips or a plate of cookies are usually enticing to shoppers who have been out and about all day.
At the end of the day, remember that it is more important to get rid of these things than it is to turn a big profit. These items are being sold to make room for a move. With friends and family there to help, a solid plan in place for the days leading up to the sale, and a reasonable price on the items, you’re bound to walk away with a little extra cash and a great deal fewer items.