There are several posts out there telling readers how to maximize garage sale profits, but I rarely see anyone boast about the magic of a Friday only garage sale. In my opinion, time is just as valuable as money, which is why if I am going to have a garage sale, I want to make the maximum amount of money for the littlest time spent.
Over the past three years, I have had about seven garage sales (seriously, where does all this stuff come from?). Each time, I have held the sale on a Friday from 6:30-9:30 a.m. Yes, that is right. Just three hours. It usually takes 45 minutes to set up and then another 45 minutes to clean up. Every single sale, even the ones where I didn’t have any high ticket items to sell, I have made $350-600.
Here are my three secrets behind the Friday sale. I hope you can benefit from them as much as I have.
This Will Only Work in a Good Area: If you live far away from the main streets, then a Friday sale might not give you any luck. Within five miles of my home are five schools, several businesses, and the mall. Having the sale early Friday morning means that I always catch people on their way to work, on their way to go shopping, or on their way to drop off their kids at school. If you don’t live in a busy area, perhaps a friend or family member will allow you to have a garage sale at their home.
Make the Biggest Signs Possible: I always use the full sheet of bright poster board for my signs. One sheet is one sign, and then I usually have about five signs to post up. I make sure they are all the same color, usually hot pink, and I write “Huge Yard Sale – This Friday Only – 6:30-9:30 AM”. I think the sign catches the eye of many drivers while also creating a sense of urgency. I want the driver to think, “This is a short yard sale, I better go now and not wait.” I can’t confirm if anyone has actually thought this, but by the way many of the cars come zooming into my street, I would like to think that my hunch is right.
Some people try to be frugal when making garage sale signs. Don’t! Paying $5 for big, bright poster board signs is worth the cost. Don’t even think about making signs that are the size of a regular piece of paper or signs out of old boxes. I have seen so many yard sale signs that are just cut out arrows too. These signs are too small to see and too confusing to follow.
Post Collage Ads on Craigslist and Facebook: I also take several pictures of my best items in the sale, and I make a quick collage in a free app. I then post a short snippet that reads, “Huge Yard Sale by the mall. This Friday only. Follow the Hot Pink signs on ‘main street name’”. I post the snippet and collage on Craigslist and every local Facebook sale site I belong to.
It’s a good idea not to answer any questions on these items because you want people to visit the sale to find out the price. For example, if you are selling a nice dining room set and post a picture of it with your sale ad, you will probably have one or two interested buyers asking the price. You don’t want that price to scare them away from the sale all together. You want them to come to the sale. If they think the table is too expensive, they are still likely to consider other items.
Those are my three tips for making the most at a yard sale. I just held one today, and made a quick $350. This isn’t too bad considering my big items, like a big sofa chair and high-end baby items didn’t sell. It was nice to go back inside before the day started heating up and to know that the rest of my weekend is still free.
Have you ever tried a Friday garage sale?