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5 Tips To Running The Best Yard Sale Ever

5 Tips To Running The Best Yard Sale Ever

When’s the last time you cleared all the junk out of your house? It was probably longer than you care to admit. Chances are your house is full of things you haven’t had use for in years.

In your closets, the back of your shelves, the bottom of your drawers and the corners of your rooms are probably a slew of items you’ve forgotten about entirely. They’re taking up space and not doing you any favors. The best way to get rid of them is sell them, and the best way to sell your stuff? A yard sale.

A poorly planned yard sale, however, can attract little to no attention. In order to maximize sales, you need to do some research. Here are five tips to run the best yard sale ever, and get rid of all your old junk doing it.

  1. Advertise heavily

If no one knows your yard sale is happening, no one will show up. The best way to ruin a yard sale before it even begins is not putting in the time to advertise your sale. Make sure you put thought and effort into figuring out how best to advertise your yard sale.

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Identify spaces with high foot traffic, and put flyers in places that are easy to notice. Potential readers should be able to stop and read your sign without getting shoved by an angry crowd, but still be able to see it from their walking path.

Place advertisements in local community spaces. Create a Facebook event and invite your local friends, and urge them to invite their own local friends as well. Make a Craigslist post, or advertise on online yard sale spaces, and make sure your advertisements are detailed and thorough. Include the address, the times available, the range of prices, the category of goods you’re selling and the date of the sale. Be sure your advertisements go up several days before the yard sale.

  1. Prepare for payment haggling

Yard sales are a casual, unlicensed event, and customers come in with a different attitude than they would a brick-and-mortar store. Expect people to negotiate with you on payment—expect to negotiate, not just on how much they should pay, but also on how they should pay.

Someone may try to barter with you, but if your goal is to raise some cash, resist any bartering offers. The goal of a yard sale is to get rid of junk, not switch it out for other junk.

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Others may want to pay with cards, especially if you’re selling things that might quickly add up in price. Luckily, accepting credit cards is increasingly easy for the layperson to do. Squareup charges a nominal 2.7 percent fee to allow you to process credit cards with your phone.

  1. Buddy up

Although you want to move your products, you’ll attract more customers if you have more to sell. Ask friends or neighbors if they have goods they’d like to sell as well, and make your yard sale a multi-seller event.

Multiple sellers means people have more options for clothing sizes and types, or more varied genres of books and movies. It promotes a wider audience, rather than just attracting those interested in your size medium shirts and size eight skinny jeans, or your collection of Michael Buble CDs.

Better variety encourages more shopping, and more shopping means more money. Don’t think of other sellers as competitors. Think of them as another attraction to draw customers in.

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  1. Present your goods wisely.

Humans are visual creatures, which means we’re visual shoppers as well. How products are arranged can influence how much interest someone will have in your stuff.

This doesn’t have to be complicated. Arrange clothes by size and category. For example, if you have specialist items, such as shoes for nurses, you may consider grouping them with other nursing items. If you have a pile of books, arrange them by subject matter and have them stacked neatly so people can pick them up. Arrange DVDs on the table so customers can see multiple titles at once. Keep different categories clumped together.

If you have any particularly exciting wares to sell, arrange them so they’re closer to the sidewalk and easier for passerbys to see. Something fun may draw them in and encourage them to shop around.

  1. Offer some free stuff.

Although this seems counterintuitive, it’s a good sales technique to get people more willing to part with their money. A box of free goodies, or a collection of free with purchase items, can convince people that the $7 you want for a DVD is more worthwhile. People like free things, and giving stuff away has long been a well-used marketing technique.

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Free snacks, especially if they were advertised on the flyer, can also draw customers in. Chips in a bowl, a tray of cookies or some dip platters can feed browsers and put them in a better mood to spend. Fill their stomachs and empty their wallets with kindness, and you’ll have a much better yard sale.

Think carefully about how you want to plan your sale. With some clever moves and trusted marketing techniques, your yard sale can be a successful and worthwhile one.

Featured photo credit: Barb Crawford via flickr.com

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Published on November 20, 2018

The Best Ways to Save Money Even Impulsive Spenders Can Get Behind

The Best Ways to Save Money Even Impulsive Spenders Can Get Behind

The truth is, there are many “money saving guides” online, but most don’t cover the root issue for not saving.

Once I’d discovered a few key factors that allowed me to save 10k in one year, I realized why most articles couldn’t help me. The problem is that even with the right strategies you can still fail to save money. You need to have the right systems in place and the right mindset.

In this guide, I’ll cover the best ways to save money — practical yet powerful steps you can take to start saving more. It won’t be easy but with hard work, I’m confident you’ll be able to save more money–even if you’re an impulsive spender.

Why Your Past Prevents You from Saving Money

Are you constantly thinking about your financial mistakes?

If so, these thoughts are holding you back from saving.

I get it, you wish you could go back in time to avoid your financial downfalls. But dwelling over your past will only rob you from your future. Instead, reflect on your mistakes and ask yourself what lessons you can learn from them.

It wasn’t easy for me to accept that I had accumulated thousands of dollars in credit card debt. Once I did, I started heading in the right direction. Embrace your past failures and use them as an opportunity to set new financial goals.

For example, after accepting that you’re thousands of dollars in debt create a plan to be debt free in a year or two. This way when you’ll be at peace even when you get negative thoughts about your finances. Now you can focus more time on saving and less on your past financial mistakes.

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How to Effortlessly Track Your Spending

Stop manually tracking your spending.

Leverage powerful analytic tools such as Personal Capital and these money management apps to do the work for you. This tool has worked for me and has kept me motivated to why I’m saving in the first place. Once you login to your Personal Capital dashboard, you’re able to view your net worth.

When I’d first signed up with Personal Capital, I had a negative net worth, but this motivated me to save more. With this tool, you can also view your spending patterns, expenses, and how much money you’re saving.

Use your net worth as your north star to saving more. Whenever you experience financial setbacks, view how far you’ve come along. Saving money is only half the battle, being consistent is the other half.

The Truth on Why You Keep Failing

Saving money isn’t sexy. If it was, wouldn’t everyone be doing it?

Some people are natural savers, but most are impulsive spenders. Instead of denying that you’re an impulsive spender, embrace it.

Don’t try to save 60 to 70% of your income if this means you’ll live a miserable life. Saving money isn’t a race but a marathon. You’re saving for retirement and for large purchases.

If you’re currently having a hard time saving, start spending more money on nice things. This may sound counterintuitive but hear me out. Wouldn’t it be better to save $200 each month for 12 months instead of $500 for 3 months?

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Most people run into trouble because they create budgets that set them up for failure. This system won’t work for those who are frugal, but chances are they don’t need help saving. This system is for those who can’t save money and need to be rewarded for their hard work.

Only because you’re buying nice things doesn’t mean that you’ll save less. Here are some rules you should have in place:

  1. Save more than 50% of your available money (after expenses)
  2. Only buy nice things after saving
  3. Automate your savings with automatic bank transfers

These are the same rules that helped me save thousands each year while buying the latest iPhone. Focus only on items that are important to you. Remember, you can afford anything but not everything.

How to Foolproof Yourself out of Debt

Personal finance is a game. On one end, you’re earning money; and on the to other, you’re saving. But what ends up counting in the end isn’t how much you earn but how much you save. Research shows that about 60% of Americans spend more than they save.[1]

So how can you separate yourself from the 60%?

By not accumulating more debt. This way you’ll have more money to save and avoid having more financial obligations. A great way to stop accumulating debt is using cash to pay for all your transactions.

This will be challenging, depending on how reliant you are with your credit card, but it’s worth the effort. Not only will you stop accruing debt, but you’ll also be more conscious with what you buy.

For example, you’ll think twice about purchasing a new $200 headphone despite having the cash to buy them. According to a poll conducted by The CreditCards.com, 5 out of 6 Americans are impulsive spenders.[2]

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Telling yourself that you’ll have the discipline to not buy things won’t cut it. This is equal to having junk food in your fridge while trying to eat healthy–it’s only a matter of time before you slip. By using cash to make your purchases, you’ll spend less and save more.

A Proven Formula to Skyrocket Your Savings

Having proven systems in place to help you save more is important, but they’re not the best way to save money.

You can search for dozens of ways to save money, but there’ll always be a limit. Instead of spending the majority of your effort saving, look for ways to increase your income. The truth is that once you have the right systems in place, saving is easy.

What’s challenging is earning more money. There are many routes you can take to achieve this. For example, you can work long and hard at your current job to earn a raise. But there’s one problem–you’re depending on someone else to give you a raise.

Your company will have to have the budget, and you’ll have to know how to toot your own horn to get this raise. This isn’t to say that earning a raise is impossible, but things are better when you’re in control right? That’s why building a side-hustle is the best way to increase your income.

Think of your side-hustle as a part-time job doing something you enjoy. You can sell items on eBay for a profit, or design websites for small businesses. Building a side-hustle will be on the hardest things you’ll do, be too stubborn to quit.

During the early stages, you won’t be making money and that’s okay. Since you already have a source of income, you won’t be dependent on your side-hustle to pay for your expenses. Depending on how much time you invest in your side-hustle, it can one day replace your current income.

Whatever route you take, focus more on earning and save as much as possible. You have more control than you give yourself credit for.

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Transform Yourself into a Saving Money Machine

Saving money isn’t complicated but it’s one of the hardest things you’ll do.

By learning from your mistakes and rewarding yourself after saving you’ll save more. What would you do with an extra $200 or $500 each month? To some, this is life-changing money that can improve the quality of their lives.

The truth is saving money is an art. Save too much and you’ll quit, but save too little and you’ll pay for the consequences in the future. Saving money takes effort and having the right systems in place.

Imagine if you’d started saving an extra $100 this next month? Or, saved $20K in one year? Although it’s hard to imagine, this can be your reality if you follow the principles covered in this guide.

Take a moment to brainstorm which goals you’d be able to reach if you had extra money each month. Use these goals as motivation to help you stay on track on your journey to saving more. If I was able to save thousands of dollars with little guidance, imagine what you’ll be able to do.

What are you waiting for? Go and start saving money, the sky is your limit.

Featured photo credit: rawpixel via unsplash.com

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