The Things You Never Want to Buy at a Garage Sale

However, just like there are items you definitely want to look for when you’re shopping at a garage sale, there are also items that you’ll want to avoid like the black plague. In the same fashion, the items you want to avoid buying at a garage sale are also the items you’ll want to avoid selling, if you plan on hosting your own sale. Read on to find out what these items are.

Item #1: Mattresses or Sleeping Pillows

It can be tempting to want to buy a secondhand mattress from a garage sale, as they can be extremely pricey to purchase full-price. But, the risks of buying a used mattress from a stranger’s home are very high. Many used mattresses are full of bodily fluids, bacteria, dead skin and are potentially infested with bed bugs or mites. The same can be said about sleeping pillows. When you consider these gross factors, it’s pretty self-explanatory for why you shouldn’t buy a used mattress from a garage sale. And, if you’re trying to get rid of a mattress, don’t sell it at your garage sale. See if a family member wants it for free or just get rid of it.

Item #2: Used Car Seats

Yes, like mattresses, buying a new car seat from the store typically comes with a hefty price tag. Despite this, it’s never okay to buy a used baby car seat from a garage sale. In many cases, these car seats are expired, which may put your baby at risk. If you have car seats that you no longer use, but aren’t expired, consider donating them to a local women’s shelter instead of trying to sell them. Your baby’s safety is of the utmost importance, and investing in a brand-new car seat is money well spent.

Item #3: Helmets

You may not know this, but every time a safety helmet is involved in an incident (including a kid falling off their bike), it should be replaced. Because you don’t know if a helmet that’s for sale at a garage sale has been in an accident or not, it’s not a safe or smart idea to purchase a used safety helmet.

Item #4: Cosmetics

While this should go without saying, sometimes it needs to be said. Do not buy used makeup or cosmetics from yard sales. You will run the risk of infection if you purchase used cosmetics. Additionally, many items have expiration dates that you may no longer be able to see if you buy these products used. In short, just avoid them.

Item #5: Electronics

The electronics that are being sold at yard sales are generally close to being outdated (and sometimes don’t even work at all), you should avoid purchasing electronics from a yard sale. You’re better off buying these items brand-new or certified refurbished so that you don’t end up wasting money on an item that won’t work.

Item #6: Damaged Cookware

While you can certainly find gently-used cookware at garage sales, there are plenty of damaged pieces of cookware for sale. Be sure to carefully inspect any cookware before you purchase it, as failing to do so will result in frustrations and wasted money.

Summer Yard Sales: The Key to Success?

The temperatures are rising, kids are running around the neighborhood and parents have some time off. The ice cream truck rolls past your house in the dead of the afternoon. What does all this mean? It means that summer is here. And with summer’s arrival comes another milestone: garage sale season. That’s right, garage sales are at their peak in the warmer months of summer. While that might seem like an old wives’ tale, it’s actually the truth. So, if you’ve been planning on hosting a garage sale to get rid of some accumulated clutter and hopefully make a few extra bucks, now’s the time.

Why is summer such a popular yard sale time?

Because the weather is nice and many people have more free time in the summer, there’s a huge benefit to holding your yard sale in the summer. As long as you plan out your sale properly, you’re sure to gather a bigger pool of sellers in the months of June, July and August than you would in say November or December. Think about it, are you more likely to go shopping in someone’s front yard or garage when it’s a warm sunny day or when it’s cold and snowy? The answer is pretty self-explanatory.

How do you make your summer yard sale a success?

If you’re hoping to have a successful summer yard sale (and let’s face it, who isn’t hoping that their sale is a success), there are a handful of things you’ll want to be sure to do. Here’s the general overview of the steps you must take:

  • Sell the right items: You’ll want to make sure that the items you put up for sale at the summer garage sale are in-season and on-trend. This means that you should include summer clothing, summer toys or lawn games and even back-to-school items. Yes, that’s right. Kids will be going back to school in a few short weeks and parents will most likely be looking to get some school must-haves for cheap.
  • Plan the right day and weekend: You’re not going to want to plan your summer sales extravaganza for a holiday weekend. Many families head out of town to go camping or travel to visit loved ones over holiday weekends. That means that long weekends which may fall during Fourth of July and Labor Day are off-limits if you’re hoping to have a successful sale. You’ll also want to make sure that you hold your sale for at least two days to get the highest amount of potential buyers.
  • Advertise your sale: While it’s true that you’ll get a decent amount of foot traffic in the summer months, you can’t bank on that. Be sure to put up bright signs on busy corners and post about your upcoming summer sale on social media and community sites to increase the odds of having as many buyers as possible.

Summary

If you’re hoping to have a successful summer sale, you’ll need to make sure that you properly plan out a weekend for it, advertise it as much as possible and sell seasonal items. Good luck!

All You Need to Know About the 127 Yard Sale

Commonly referred to as “The World’s Longest Yard Sale,” the 127 Yard Sale is a yard sale and a tourist destination in one. Spanning 690 miles, the route of the 127 Yard Sale goes through six different states. These six states include Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia and Alabama. The route primarily follows Highway 127, which is where the sale got its name. If you’re interested in shopping or participating in the 127 Yard Sale, read on to learn more.

Dates of the 127 Yard Sale

The 127 Yard Sale is an annual event that takes place in August. The sale typically spans four days, with most businesses along the route being open by 8 a.m. However, not every vendor tent follows those same guidelines, so it’s possible that if you’re there early, not everything will be open for business just yet. This year, the sale will begin on Thursday, Aug. 1, 2019 and end on Sunday, Aug. 4, 2019.

How to Shop the Sale

Thousands of vendors line up along the route to sell their goods. Typically, this means that the sales will take place in front yards, fields, pastures, empty lots, parks, town centers or side streets on or just off the main route. Be sure to check out the official map on the 127 Yard Sale website for more information.

There are some “Major Vendor Stops” that you’ll be able to see on the map. If you’re someone who doesn’t want to spend all day shopping, you should plan to visit these stops. These stops are typically large groups of vendors who’ve come together to sell all their items in one central location, giving you the best possible odds of finding as much as possible in a short amount of time.

You should treat the 127 Yard Sale like any other yard sale, bringing cash to make your purchases. While some vendors have started accepting credit cards, many are still cash-only. Don’t risk disappointment by not bringing cash to the sales!

Lodging on the Route

If you’re planning on driving the entire route, you’ll definitely need to plan accordingly for lodging arrangements. Because this event is so popular, you shouldn’t wait until the day-of to try to make a lodging reservation. On the sale’s official website, there’s a hefty list of hotels, motels, camping grounds and RV parks that you can check out in order to make a reservation.

Becoming a Vendor

If you’re someone who wants to sign up to sell at the World’s Longest Yard Sale, you can’t just show up on the day of the sale. You’ll need to go through the site’s sign-up process. The site even has a fact sheet that first-time vendors may find useful ahead of the sale’s start. If you’re well organized and follow the proper steps for creating a vendor listing, the odds of a successful sale are in your favor!

Summary

The World’s Longest Yard Sale is a cultural event that occurs every August. Whether you’re a shopper, seller or an adventurer, you’re sure to have a great time at this year’s 127 Yard Sale!

Mistakes to Avoid Making When Shopping at Estate Sales

Shopping local estate sales are a great way to score a deal on antiques and home goods in general. However, if you’re not an experienced estate sale shopper, there are a few mistakes you’ll surely want to avoid when you’re shopping. From reviewing the estate sale’s description and rules & regulations ahead of time to attending only one day of the estate sale, there are many things to be mindful of. Here are the top mistakes to avoid when shopping at an estate sale.

1. Being disrespectful.

There’s a clear distinction between a garage or yard sale and an estate sale. If you’re a novice sale shopper, you’re probably not quite sure how these sales differ. When you’re at an estate sale, the estate is trying to get rid of as much as they can while still making a lot of money. Many times, these estate sales are put on because of a death, divorce, downsize or debt, meaning that there may be emotional triggers. Be sure to be respectful when trying to negotiate a price and while in the estate.

2. Failing to do your research ahead of time.

In the age of the internet, it’s pretty commonplace for those holding an estate sale to post the event’s details and even pictures of big-ticket items online. If you’re shopping for a purpose and you don’t review estate sale photos before getting there, you may risk not reaching there early enough to stand in queue to get the items you really want. Or, on the flip-side, you may get to the sale and find out they don’t have anything you actually need, thus wasting your time.

3. Only attending one day of the estate sale.

Some estate sales span multiple days. Like semi-annual sales at big box retail stores often do, some estate sales will mark down the prices of items that didn’t sell on the first or second day of a sale. That’s why it’s important to make a mental note of items you liked, and even take a picture (if allowed), so that you can return on another day of the sale to see if the price has decreased at all. If you’re shopping for a vintage or antique piece, returning on another day of the sale will enable you to do your research on pricing to make sure you’re paying a fair price.

4. Bringing your children (furry or human).

Let’s face it—while they’re adorable and probably well-behaved 99% of the time, you shouldn’t bring your kids to an estate sale. Estate sales are rarely safety-proofed for children, and there are often priceless valuables around the home. Moreover, an estate seller might be offended if you try to bring your pet or child to an estate sale in their home. Don’t risk it by bringing them, arrange for alternative childcare in order to attend the sale by yourself or with other adults.

Summary

By keeping these four don’ts in mind, you’ll be well on your way of preparing to attend an estate sale. Remember, be courteous, respectful and do your research ahead of time.

Do’s and Don’ts of Yard Sale Display

Summer’s here and that means it’s time for yard sale season to begin. If you’re thinking about hosting a yard sale this year to get rid of unwanted clutter and make a few extra bucks, you’re in luck. We’ve put together a list of essential do’s and don’ts for yard sale displays. Read on to learn more.

Don’ts

Here are the things you must avoid doing when preparing for your yard sale:

  • Don’t waste time cleaning or prepping. Yard sale attendees expect to find clean goods when they look at your sale, but they’re not expecting your sale or your items to look like they’re in the Chanel store. So, you should definitely throw any old clothes in the wash machine and fold them, but you definitely don’t need to waste time ironing your clothes.
  • Don’t group items or racks too close together. Carefully plan out how you’re going to set up your sale ahead of time. Failing to do so often results in a cluttered sale space that will frustrate some buyers to the point of them leaving empty-handed.
  • Don’t sell recalled or damaged items. No matter how frustrating it may be that an item you once purchased is recalled or damaged, don’t put these unwanted items out at your sale. Bite the bullet and toss them in the trash.

Do’s

  • Do group similar items together. An easy organizational hack for your sale doubles as a sale-boosting tactic. Separate all of the items you’ll be selling into groups, and clearly mark each group’s section at your sale. This will make it easy for shoppers to find what they’re looking for, making them happier to spend money at your sale.
  • Do place valuable items near the checkout. Moving your valuable items close to the checkout table is beneficial for a multitude of reasons. First, having these items close to you will allow you to keep a watchful eye on them to make sure they don’t go missing. Second, you may get people to impulsively purchase these items if they’re on their way up to register and something catches their eye.
  • Do place large items close to the street. If you’re selling furniture or any other hot, big-ticket items that aren’t easy to steal, place these items toward the end of your driveway near the street. Even if someone wasn’t planning on shopping your sale, if they see something that they like, they may stop and make an impulse purchase.
  • Do invest in advertisement and signboards. Advertising your sale and using well-made signs are a great way to boost your sales and spread the word. From signs that let people know where the sale is to signs that point out different sections of your sale, no one will complain about too much organization at your sale.
  • Do rearrange goods during downtime. There’s nothing worse than a messy and cluttered yard sale. When there’s downtime during your sale, be sure to spend that time rearranging goods instead of just hanging out. If it’s easy to find items, shoppers are more likely to purchase goods.

Summary

By keeping these tips in mind while planning and hosting your yard sale, you’ll be well on your way to a successful event. Best of luck!

Questions to Ask Before Hiring an Estate Sale Pro

For many people who are in the position to host an estate sale, trusting in the professionals to run their estate sale may be the best decision they can make when it comes to getting rid of items in the most lucrative and speedy way possible. If you’re searching for an estate sale professional to hire to carry out your sale, be sure to ask the following questions before you make the hiring decision official.

Question 1: What are your fees?

There’s quite a bit of discrepancy in how estate sale companies structure their fees, meaning that not every company is the same. That’s why it’s so important to ask what a company’s charges are and how they assess those charges. For example, companies typically charge:

  • A flat rate
  • A flat rate, plus a percentage of the sales
  • A percentage of gross sales
  • A balance minimum or percentage of the sales, whichever happens to be greater

These different fee assessments might not seem like a big deal, but if you have a home with many valuable items, choosing a professional company that takes a percentage of your sales may cause you to lose out on more money than you anticipated.

Moreover, some companies don’t offer all-inclusive fees. If you end up needing a permit to host an estate sale or needing to have professionals come in to clear out the house after the sale is over, or the company requires you to pitch in for credit card processing fees or advertising costs, you’ll be out more money than you originally planned. Knowing what a company charges and what their fees include is a crucial component to find out before you make a decision on what professional to go with for your estate sale.

Question 2: How do you plan to keep the property secure?

In the case of an estate sale, you’re entrusting a third-party service with personal belongings to sell to total strangers. Some of these items could hold a high monetary or sentimental value. Finding out upfront how a company plans to keep your personal items and property secure throughout the duration of the sale is essential.

Question 3: How do you price the items for sale?

Finding out how a professional company plans to price your items for sale is key in setting expectations for how much money you’ll be able to make from the sale. An honest company will be able to give you a straight answer—don’t settle for one that seems shady.

Question 4: Are you insured?

Even when you employ professionals to carry out a service, accidents do happen. The responsible estate sale agents will have taken the proper steps to become insured in the event that a sale is robbed, a shopper becomes injured or a staff suffers an injury during the sale. Don’t choose a company that can’t provide you with proper proof of insurance.

Question 5: What do you require of me?

You’ll want to know exactly what you’re required to do prior to the sale so you know if you can work with a company or not. You’ll want to find out how they schedule the sale, when payment is made and if there are any prohibitions for who is and isn’t allowed for participating in the sale.

Summary

Taking the time to find out the answers to these essential questions before hiring an estate sale agent or professional will ensure that your estate sale is successful as it possibly can be.

How to Host a Successful Community Garage Sale?

Hosting a garage sale is a tried and true method for getting rid of clutter you no longer want and making a few extra bucks. However, your garage sale will only be successful if you can drive enough traffic to your sale to sell your items. One way to increase the odds of a successful sale is to host a community garage sale, where members of your neighborhood, church or school come together to sell your unwanted items for profit. By the sheer structure of having more people and more items at your sale, you’ll be sure to garner more potential buyers at your event. But, you may be wondering how you can get started with organizing a community garage sale. Don’t worry, here are just a few simple steps to take to get the ball rolling.

Create Your Community

In order to host a community garage sale, you need to create your community. This could include your neighborhood, your church, your school or even your family and friends. Regardless of who you decide to host a sale with, you need to find a community who’s willing to gather up items to sell. You can do this by distributing flyers, calling people, posting on social media or even just walking door to door. HoardNot App helps you in this regard, to connect with communities around you, which are bound to your local area. The communities consist of like-minded people, who promote sale and purchase of niche items in the area. Decide When and Where You Want to Have the Sale

Decide When and Where You Want to Have the Sale

Once you’ve found the community members with whom you’ll hold your sale, you need to agree on a date, time and location to hold your sale. Typically, weekends are the most profitable times to hold garage sales. For optimal results, consider having a multi-day sale, either Friday and Saturday, Saturday and Sunday or all weekend. This will give plenty of buyers the opportunity to make it out to your sale. Consider implementing a tagging system where a specific color sticker correlates to a specific seller so that you can track how much money a household earns at the register. This way, even if someone can’t be there at the sale the whole time, they’ll still be able to earn their deserved money.

Depending on the size of your sale and who you’re holding a garage sale with, location may become tricky. Try to have one person volunteer their front yard or garage for the sale to make it easy and simple. If that’s not possible, try to find a legal and public place where you can set up shop for the sale.

Organize Your Items

To make things as easy as possible, it’s in your best interest to collectively come up with a pricing and tagging system to ensure that the rightful seller of an item gets credit for the sale. This could be as easy as having every seller create an itemized list of what they’re selling, and assigning a specific color tag to them and their items. Then, have one checkout spot where the cashier is working off each seller’s itemized lists, marking down the price paid for each item. At the end of the sale, this makes it easy to divvy up the cash or credit sales received.

Summary

With a little organization and teamwork, hosting a community garage sale can be a fun way to get rid of your unwanted household items and make some money!

Estate Sales: DIY or Hire a Professional?

If you find yourself in the position of needing to have an estate sale, the thought, “Should I hire a professional company to host my estate sale?” has probably crossed your mind. All things considered, holding an estate sale is more involved than hosting your run-of-the-mill garage sale. You’ll have to generate a list, put a price tag on your items and, in some cases, take pictures or post your estate sale online. If you’ve got plenty of time on your hands or you’re an organized individual, you may be able to get away with not turning to the pros when it comes time to hold your estate sale. For many others, though, trusting in the professionals to run your estate sale may be the best decision you can make when it comes to getting rid of your items in the most lucrative and speedy way possible. Read on to learn more.

The Expert Touch

Estate sale companies are experts when it comes to hosting and running an estate sale. After all, it is their area of expertise. Because they know the industry’s ins and outs, you can be sure that you’ll have a successful sale with their help. Moreover, these experts are familiar with local and state legislation surrounding estate sales, so you can trust your sale will be in compliance with any applicable legislation. And, the vast majority of estate sale companies can accept credit cards, further increasing your potential for hefty profits at your estate sale.

Reputation and Connections

Many estate sale companies have been in the business for years, and have developed a sense of trust within the estate sale buyer community. Chances are, if you choose a well-known third-party company, their top buyers will be notified of your sale and will likely show up to see what you’re selling. Unlike when you host a sale yourself, you’ll for sure have customers shopping your items.

The Pros Take Care of the Items That Don’t Sell

Regardless of the reason why you’re looking to hold an estate sale, we know you probably have no need for the items that don’t sell. If you host a sale on your own, you’ll be stuck dealing with what doesn’t sell, sometimes being rushed to get it out of your home. When you choose a professional estate sale company, you’ll have many options as to what will happen to the items that don’t sell during the sale. In many cases, there’s an option for the company to move the items for you, taking one more stressful thing off your plate for you. In some cases, you can even contract the company to have your home professionally cleaned after the sale is over and the items have been removed.

You shouldn’t have to do extra work—needing to host an estate sale is stressful enough. Let the professionals help you. Your sale will not only be more successful with their help, but it will go a lot smoother on your end, giving you the time and energy you need to tackle other tasks in your life.

Evolution of the Garage Sale

Summers and warm weather are pretty much synonymous with yard and garage sales. Every weekend throughout these warm months you’ll be able to find at least one family in every neighborhood hosting a garage sale.

Historical Roots

The garage sales you see in present day are vastly different from the ones in the past, but the same principle still exists. The first garage sales, which are also known as rummage sales, can be traced way back in history to the port cities. Rummage is a nautical term that means the arranging of items within a ship’s casks. After a ship pulled into the dock, any unclaimed or damaged cargo would be hauled off the ship and put up for sale—hence the beginning of a rummage sale. Centuries later, this practice was adopted by charities and churches to raise money and give to the less fortunate. Typically, these organizations would ask their parishioners or the wealthy to donate any unwanted or discarded goods to raise money.

20th Century Practices

The practice continued to expand, with Americans selling items they no longer had use for or desire to keep. While many neighbors had already done this before, now the concept of selling—not just trading—your goods. In the trying economic times, this practice proved to be useful for many Americans who needed to make ends meet. The practice of selling your own items became more socially acceptable in these early times, as it had been frowned upon immensely before to purchase the goods of someone else.

Downturn of Garage Sales

The negative social stigma of purchasing pre-owned goods hit an all-time high following the years of the World Wars. Many Americans had no choice but to shop at these sales during the hard economic times following the wars, including the Great Depression, in order to find affordable products. In the same fashion, many Americans had to sell their clothes or household items to make money to purchase food or to pay for their lodging or rent.

The 50s and early 60s saw a downturn in popularity of the yard sale, as it wasn’t socially acceptable to purchase pre-owned goods. These two decades were of great wealth for many Americans, with the expectation that the more new products and appliances you had, the better off you were.

Upswing of Garage Sales

Once the 70s rolled around, though, the nostalgic and loved sense of yard sales returned. As Americans began to embrace environmentalism and being thrifty, the yard sale transformed into the iconic tradition that is known now.

Today, Americans are wealthier than ever before, but the environmental aspect of capitalism has resulted in many Americans preferring to purchase pre-owned goods in lieu of brand-new goods. Additionally, some people just want to save money, and many college students are in so much debt that they don’t have another choice but to hit up garage sales before the big box department stores.

Summary

Garage sales have come a long way from their humble beginnings. As times continue to change, you can expect that garage sales will only continue to grow in popularity. Happy shopping!

Why You Need to Plan a Yard Sale Shopping Route?

If you’re planning on shopping your local yard sales this season, it’s important to take the time to properly plan and prepare. Because you won’t know what’s at a garage sale until you get there, you need to list out exactly what you’re looking for and where you might be able to find it. That’s where planning a yard sale shopping route comes in handy. Whether you want to shop two sales in one day or upwards of five sales in one day, these steps laid out below will help you on your quest to finding the best sales in your area and planning out the perfect shopping route. Read on to learn more.

Research Upcoming Yard Sales

In the past, you’d only be able to find local yard sales by scouting out the streets and neighborhoods of your city. While this is still a viable way to find promising sales, you’re probably a busy person who doesn’t want to invest all that time and money driving around town. Thanks to the internet and technology as a whole, you don’t have to. Many hosts of garage sales will post online and on yard sale listing sites to advertise their upcoming sales. There might even be cellphone applications available for your area that allow you see sales near you with ease. This new technologically advanced medium affords you the opportunity of being able to easily see where these sales may be. Additionally, some listings include images of items for sale and descriptions of what you might find at the sale. This information can be very useful in determining if you should go to that sale or not.

Another way you can find local garage sales to visit is by checking your paper. Some sellers will post an ad for the upcoming garage sale in the timeless advertising section of the newspaper. You can even try to check the online classifieds section of your paper if you’re not sure where to buy your local paper.

Planning Out Your Route

After you’ve thoroughly researched the upcoming sales in your area and decided which ones you want to visit, it’s time to plan out your shopping route. It may seem silly but creating a shopping route is a surefire way that you’ll stay on track and not be aimlessly driving across town. While you can do this the old-fashioned way by physically plotting these points on a map of your area, it might be easier to use technology. Start at the yard sale that you’re most interested in checking out. This way, you can be sure to get there first and not risk the items you want selling before you get there. From there, plan your trip accordingly with what makes sense. This may mean you plan your route based on where the sales are in a logical manner. Or, this could mean you go to the most interesting sales first. Whatever you plan on doing, having a plan will help you stay organized and on-track, even if the sales become overwhelming for you.

Summary

When you have a plan, you’re setting yourself up for success. Take the time to do your research and plot out the sales you want to go to so that you don’t have to stress about it when it’s shopping day.