At Home…Have a Garage Sale
Hints for Success
What to sell
Look in your closets and basement. We all have things
we don’t use: clothes that our kids grew out of before wearing, a second
set of dishes that is packed away, old gifts that were not right for our
tastes, or maybe sports equipment for a new hobby that didn’t develop.
Most of this “stuff” is stuck in boxes or in the back of closets.
Look around and be honest, do you really need it. These are the
items you will want to consider for a garage sale.
Advertising the sale . . .
Consider a classified ad in the major or local newspapers.
Some have special pricing for an ad that runs several days. For a Saturday
sale, you might want to run the advertisement that Thursday, Friday and
Saturday. Before placing the ad, check out other ads. What appeals to
you? To bring in the traffic you
may want to list specific items you have for sale such as pair maple twin
beds, antique brass bowl or maternity clothes. Be specific about dates
and times. Don’t forget your address or cross streets. Most garage sale
veterans suggest NOT listing a phone number.
How about using bulletin boards at the local grocery or
laundry mat? Make up a flyer with pictures cut from magazines or use index
cards. Include the same information as in the newspaper ad. If it is hand
written, make it legible. Check with the merchant for posting requirements.
Signs on the day of the sale point potential customers
to you.Sometimes the newspaper you have advertised in will provide you
with signs. If you don’t have generic signs provided, make up your own.
Keep it simple; list the address and USE BIG LETTERS. You don’t want any
accidents from people swerving in cars to read your signs. Use an arrow
to point the way. Consider signs at major intersections near the sale
location or at least on the closest well traveled street. If you are part
of a neighborhood or group of sales, print up a map in advance with sale
locations marked and have these available at the individual sales.
On the day of the sale pull customers in by decorating
your yard.Hang streamers or balloons from trees or poles. One garage sale
veteran provides champagne at a given hour during the day. You might consider
kids having a juice and treat stand at the front of the yard.
Pricing . . .
Clearly mark all your items. Use small labels that can
be purchased at the discount or office supply store or masking tape with
a dark pen or marker. A box or a table with like priced items can be used,
but make it clear what you price are asking. In setting the price, consider
the condition of the item, what it would cost new and how bad you want
to be rid of it. Customers expect to negotiate at garage sales. You may
want to set your price a little higher than your bottom line.
If someone appears really interested in an item, but doesn’t
want to pay what you are asking, take their name and phone number.It may
be that, at the end of the day, you would be willing to consider their
offer and you can negotiate.
Setting up shop . . .
Most experienced garage sale -ers recommend having every
thing clean from clothes to tools. Items look better and you can get top
dollar when something looks like care has been taken.
Display the items so that seeing the merchandise is easy
for the customers.Hang clothing if possible.Use a wire rack or rope between
two poles. Tables keep merchandise off the ground and at a height convenient
for the shoppers. Put key items where they can be seen from the street.
Straighten and sort as the day progresses.
Be prepared . . .
Have change on hand, not everyone will have the exact
dollar amount. Decide if you will accept checks. If you have appliances
or other electrical items, have an outlet available for customer testing
of the items. Having a tape measure or ruler will allow customers to measure
everything from pant waste bands to a piece of furniture.
What to do with the “stuff” at the end of
the day. . .
Don’t trash those items that are reusable!!! One of the
benefits to reuse is that it keeps materials from entering the waste stream.
Consider giving your reusable garage sale day leftovers to a your favorite
charity.Check out the Kansas City Metropolitan Reuse Guide on the Surplus
Exchange website at: www.surplusexchange.org , for nonprofit agencies
who are interested in the type of materials you have remaining AND for-profit
concerns who might consider buying specific items.
The Salvation Army and Helping Hand of Goodwill are available
to take good, usable garage sale leftovers. Both organizations
have stores and or trailers that are staffed Monday through Saturday 9:00
to 5:00. Goodwill locations are also available to drop off items on Sunday
from 12:00 to 5:00. Store/trailer locations are listed below. After hours
drop offs are not encouraged due to the possibility of scavenging and
littering of the surrounding area. Receipts are available for tax purposes.
Items accepted include clothing, shoes, small decorative pieces, and house
wares. The stores cannot accept mattresses, large overstuffed furniture
or major appliances. The Salvation Army does have a pick up service for
larger furniture and appliances. Furniture must be in good repair and
appliances must be working. Call 816-421-5434 to arrange a pick-up.
Hand of Goodwill Salvation Army
7740 Wornall, Kansas City
1320 E 10th, Kansas City
319 NE Vivion, Kansas City
4025 N Oak, KansasCity
651 E 24 Highway, Independence
8656 E 63rd, Kansas City
440 Ward Road, LeeÕs Summit
8742 Blue Ridge Blvd, Kansas City
I 29 and Prairie View Road, Platte Woods
3520 Noland Road, Independence
The City of Independence
has a clean-up day scheduled for residents April 22.
Call the hotline at 325-7623 for information about what is accepted, times
The City of Gladstone
has a clean-up weekend scheduled for residents
April 28, 29 and 30 from 8:00 to5:00.
It will be held at Central Park across from city hall.
Call 436-2200 for what is accepted.
Kansas City, Missouri
has a “Clean Sweep” set for April 29.
This is one in a series of events scheduled throughout the year.
Call 513-3464 or 513-3474 for information.
Bikes and Trikes for Tikes
accepts used bicycles.
Volunteers repair and refurbish the bicycles, then donate them.
Call 816-763-8582 to make drop off arrangements.
Books can be donated at
all locations of the Kansas City Public Library or Mid-Continent Public
Library. Items must be clean and free of mildew. The libraries cannot
accept text books, magazines or digest/condensed books. Items are added
to the collection or sold to purchase other needed books/non-budgeted
items. For large donations of books, call the Kansas City Public Library
for possible pick up arrangements.
The Surplus Exchange accepts
donations of business furniture and equipment. Good usable items are made
available to nonprofit organizations at a fraction of what they would
cost new. Items accepted include 386 and above computers, SVGA monitors,
printers and scanners. Older computer items can be donated and will be
recycled. Pickup of business furniture and equipment can be arranged for
Call 816-472-0444 for