How To Organize The Best Community Yard Sale Ever
Da'Vonne Duncan8-minute read
October 19, 2021
Eventually, we all ask ourselves if we’re hoarders and if you’re like me, you probably have untouched boxes in the attic or basement. Whether you’re moving or wanting to downsize, a yard sale or estate sale is in your near future.
The key to having a successful garage sale is knowing how to attract locals. After all, without the public, you can't make sales. For that reason, it’s important to be strategic and separate your yard sale from the others in surrounding areas.
Read on to learn garage sale tips that will help you draw a crowd at your community yard sale.
Why Organize A Community-Wide Yard Sale?
Garage sales will never go out of style because they’re a great way to make a little money off of items you’re not using.
When it comes to yard sales, bigger is better. Keep in mind that potential buyers might not drive over for one yard sale, but they will for multiple. A community-wide yard sale is a great way to increase traffic since more buyers will mean more money for sellers.
Many people, especially those who are getting their houses ready to sell, want to declutter their homes. Online yard sales and in-person garage sales are great ways to shed old belongings and put some money in your pocket for moving expenses or furnishing your next home.
Community yard sales combined with other community activities can ensure large crowds. It’s a great idea to promote the sale on a town’s or neighborhood association’s website, to increase the chances of more people seeing your advertisement.
Take into consideration that keywords, like “multifamily sale,” tend to increase traffic. Generally, when potential buyers see multifamily sales, they picture a great deal of inventory, as well as a diverse number of items.
Community-wide yard sales can be an effective way to raise money for local nonprofits. Accomplish this by charging shoppers an entry fee, which will grant them access to all available items. Similarly, you can also charge sellers a rate for their table.
Each participant should have their own table to sell their goods. For that reason, your yard may not be appropriate to host a fundraiser. Instead consider larger spaces in your area such as a school gym, park, or community center.
Set-up times will take longer for fundraisers, so give your contributors enough time to prepare their designated areas.
Community yard sales can be an entrepreneurial undertaking, especially for stay-at-home caregivers. Think about offering to have neighbors drop their stuff off and then sell it yourself through a combination of online and in-person yard sales. To achieve this, establish a commission-based system where neighbors give you a portion of the profit to sell their merchandise.
If you’re contemplating making garage sales more of a side hustle as opposed to a one-off sale, consider finding a more permanent place where people will want to shop. Look for a space that offers room to store merchandise, to shop and has plenty of parking.
7 Tips For Organizing A Community Garage Sale
From start to finish, it’s going to be your responsibility to build excitement for the sale. Make the process much easier by reading through the following tips to ensure you will have a great turnout.
Check With Your Municipality To See If You Need A Permit
Keep in mind some municipalities require permits for yard sales, particularly if you’re planning to organize a community event with lots of traffic. Checking upfront offers the perfect opportunity to see if you can get a yard sale on the community calendar.
Get The Word Out
Despite word-of-mouth being an effective way of driving participation from sellers, help customers find your yard sale easier by posting flyers throughout your community. Take into account the importance of posting an announcement about your upcoming community yard sale online, on your social media pages as well as craigslist.com or Facebook’s Marketplace. Social media can help you reach a wider audience faster, with the use of hashtags and location accuracy.
Put Signs Up Everywhere
You can also direct people to your yard sale through signage. Double-check with your city first to determine whether they will allow signs. Once you have the go-ahead, place signs on intersections and near busy locations.
The key to urging people to stop is making your signs irresistible. Use big, bold letters and bright colors to make it easier for drivers to see the information and to attract their attention. You can even put the neighborhood kids to work on making signs.
Be sure to have them make signs announcing the date, hours and location of the sale as well as directional signs to guide buyers to the sale on the big day.
Additionally, maximize your advertising and extend an invite to your community – to sell their stuff or stop by and purchase yours – by posting about your garage sale in local listings or bulletins.
Get Tech Help
Although it’s an old-school activity, yard sales can be even more profitable and hassle-free if sellers use tech. Most importantly, people might feel safer with the usage of contactless payments, following the pandemic.
Consider using apps like Venmo or PayPal to allow shoppers to make online payments. Venmo is a mobile app that allows you to send money to someone, by using their username, phone number or email. Likewise, PayPal is a mobile wallet that permits users to link their bank cards and send money through a protected internet account.
If you’re thinking about having one location for the entire sale, utilize apps like tallysheet.com to keep track of payments. The tallysheet app helps you find other multifamily sales, lets you check out customers, and promotes your yard sale.
Organize And Price
Individually price items by placing price tags or stickers on them. This will prevent the hassle of people coming up to you asking about prices. Most importantly, the usage of labels will help improve the buyer’s experience by helping them calculate the total of their items, along with having enough time for decision making.
When determining the price of your unwanted goods, understand that shoppers like to browse and are looking for steals. Stacy Fisher, a freelance writer who specializes in budgeting, freebies and saving money, recommends not pricing any of your items more than 10% retail value, unless new and unused.
The profit is small, therefore having enough inventory is crucial to building up your earnings. Another tip is to price your pieces ending in 0’s and 5’s. This will make it easier for you to give back change when needed.
Typically, when people host a yard sale, they spread out a sheet and lay dusty items on top. Here's why this is unappealing. People want items that look functional, not old and dirty. Take the time out to dust all your products, and if you have objects like bikes and electric scooters, replace the batteries and fill the tires with air.
The less work the customer must do, the better. Also, incorporate different categories of different kinds of objects, so you can have attention-grabbing inventory. Consider the following items.
Furniture: The pricing of your furniture will depend on the condition. Keep in mind that pieces with a little wear and tear should have lower value and might be perfect for first-time home buyers. Furniture that looks newer should sell for more than 10% of the retail value.
Electronics: Have a variety of CDs, DVDs, gaming systems and computers. The pricing should be determined by the release date and demand of the item. For instance, a Nintendo Wii should not be in the same price range as a PlayStation 5.
Books: Novels can be categorized by author, genre or cover type. Paperbacks should be less expensive than hardcovers since they are less durable.
Make It Easy To Pay
Apps are very helpful since they feature contactless payments, but many bargain hunters may still use cash, so make sure to have enough on hand to make change. Have plenty of 10s, 5s and 1s to break larger bills, as well a few rolls of coins if you’re selling cheaper items.
Provide Ways For Customers To Carry Their Items
Consider offering boxes and plastic bags to your customers. This will give them a way to carry out items back to their cars and free up some space in your home.
The Bottom Line: A Little Planning Can Go A Long Way Toward Maximizing Profits
It’s time to redefine how we do yard sales. With proper planning and organization, you can generate more traffic that will lead to bigger profits. Whether community yard sales last a weekend or become a side hustle, there are plenty of ways to make them successful with the help of signage, social media, and multiple payment methods.
A yard sale is just one way to make money that can be used toward a home purchase. Read more tips to learn about buying your next home.
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