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How to Have a Successful Garage Sale

How to Have a Successful Garage Sale

Spring is coming and with it comes spring cleaning! This is the ideal time to make some side cash, because you can gather everything you don’t use and sell it in a garage sale.

If you are really serious about making money from your garage sale, there are several tips and techniques that can help you get there, and we’ve listed each and every one of them below. Follow these tips, and you’ll be well on your way to having a few hundred dollars in your pocket.

Give Yourself Time

grab a box

    There’s no way that you can have a successful garage sale if you are rushed and stressed. Setting up a sale takes time and effort. For example, today would be a great time to start if you want to have a sale a month or two from now.

    Go through every room in your house one by one—spend a weekend on each if you need to. Grab a big box and a garbage bag to bring with you when you clean; everything that’s trash goes in the garbage bag, and everything that’s for sale goes in the box.

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    Store your boxes of items from each room in the same place.

    Organize and Clean

    organize stuff

      Now that you have all your boxes in the same place, it’s time to organize.

      Empty the boxes and pack like items together. All kids clothes go in one box, while all toys go in another. Wipe down items with mild soap and water to ensure they are clean and look their best.

      Price Everything

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      price tag

        Most people will not want to ask the price of something, so if it’s not clearly listed, they might walk away. In order to make sure that you earn the most money possible, be sure to put a price tag on every item.

        If you have a lot of smaller pieces, you can put them all in one box with a clearly marked label. For example, you can say “All Books $1” or “All clothing items $5 each.” This saves you time and lets the buyer know what you are expecting.

        Have Your Sale On a Saturday

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          Garage sale enthusiasts plan their Saturday mornings around them, so, it’s best to choose a Saturday in the spring so that you have a better chance of selling everything. Start your sale very early in the morning, but be sure to actually set it up even earlier than that. My most successful garage sale officially started at 8, but I sat outside early and sold almost 30 items before that time even rolled around!

          Advertise On Multiple Channels

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          Businesswoman at her desk using a digital tablet

            With the Internet age, it’s important to advertise your sale in multiple ways.

            First, you should make signs to put around your neighborhood. Don’t choose small signs with small writing, since no-one can see them! The letters on your signs should be as big as a ruler: any smaller, and cars passing by won’t be able to read what you have on them!

            Also, be sure to put an ad on www.Craigslist.com with a picture of your big-ticket items. This could include your sofa, or a stack of hardback books. Ads without photos are easy to ignore, and most people won’t even bother to look at them, so make sure that you have a big, bright picture that’s enticing to buyers. You can also post a reminder ad on the morning of saying, “Sale going on right now!”

            Pro TipDon’t forget that old-school methods like putting an ad in your local newspaper are also an effective way to get buyers to come to your house.

            Accept Low Offers

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              People go to garage sales to get quality items for low prices. They will bargain with you, and you should definitely haggle with them. It’s hard to pinpoint exactly how low you should go, but just remember that the entire goal of the garage sale is to clean out your house and make money. So, if someone offers you $10 for a side table that you spent $60 on, that’s okay—remind yourself that you didn’t want it anyway, which is why it’s out on the curb. You’d be surprised at how much you’ll make when these little items add up, so be generous and accept low offers.

              Only Take Cash

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                This seems like a no-brainer, but it’s an easy one to forget. Many people might try to pay you with a check or offer to pay you online but don’t accept it! Although most people are likely genuine, you don’t want to be scammed. Cash in hand is the best and the only approach. Even if people have to drive to the bank to withdraw cash from the ATM, go ahead and let them do so for your own security.

                Donate the Rest

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                  When your garage sale is over, pack up the leftover items and donate them to a local thrift store. Be sure to pick up a receipt for tax purposes so that you make a little extra money at the end.

                  We hope that these tips help you to have a successful garage sale this year! Good luck!

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                  Catherine Alford

                  Catherine is the go to personal finance expert for educated, aspirational moms who want to recapture their life passions.

                  11 Reasons Why It’s Important to Follow Your Dreams How to Make Money Right Now How to Have a Successful Garage Sale 30 Money Questions to Ask Your Fiance BEFORE Marriage 42 Amazingly Free Things That Will Make You Smile

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                  1 The Definitive Guide to Get out of Debt Fast (and Forever) 2 25 Easy Tips on How to Save Money Fast 3 What Is a Good Credit Score (And How to Get One) 4 9 Millionaire Success Habits That Will Inspire Your Life 5 10 Reasons Why Following Your Passion Is More Important Than Money

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                  Last Updated on July 10, 2020

                  The Definitive Guide to Get out of Debt Fast (and Forever)

                  The Definitive Guide to Get out of Debt Fast (and Forever)

                  Debt can feel crushing, like a weight that is always weighing you down. Looking at those numbers, it can feel as if you’ll never get out from under it. However, if you really want to learn how to get out of debt, it is possible with a great deal of focus and self-control.

                  Getting out of debt isn’t impossible. Like any big goal, all that it takes is an action plan to identify where you are and creating a plan to zero out your debt.

                  Identifying All of Your Debts

                  The first part of paying off your debt is getting a complete picture of what you owe. When you have everything written out in front of you, it makes it much easier to create an action plan. Depending on how much you owe, it might also help you realize it’s not as bad you might have originally thought.

                  Here’s how you can get started identifying your debts:

                  1. Own Your Debt

                  Before you start identifying all of your debts, take a moment to process that you have debt but want to get out of it.

                  Forgive yourself for any past mistakes, missed payments, or overspending. It might be painful to accept how much debt you have at first, but you must own it.

                  2. Make a Debt Tracker

                  It’s astonishing how few people ever created a tracker to understand their total debts. Most likely, it comes from not wanting to accept the guilt of having debt, but, if avoided, it can make it nearly impossible to get out of debt.

                  Open up a new Google or Microsoft Excel sheet and list out all of your debts. Start with the name of the creditor, interest rates, total balance, loan term length (if any), and the minimum amount due each payment. This will include student loans, credit cards, and any other type of debt owed.

                  3. Get Your Debt Number

                  Once you’ve made your debt tracker and taken the other steps, identify your total payoff number. This is crucial, as you will have a starting point and a clear goal that you are trying to achieve.

                  Prioritizing Your Debts

                  All debt is not created equal. It’s imperative to understand that there are different types of debt.

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                  1. Understand Bad and Good Debts

                  Bad debts are usually paying for things you want instead of always need. While there might be some emergencies that max out your credit cards, often times it’s excessive spending[1].

                  There are three main types of bad debt:

                  • Credit Card Debt: The average American household owes over $16,000 in credit card debt!
                  • Auto Loan Debt: According to CNBC , the average auto loan in the US is $30,032!
                  • Consumer Loan Debt: Consumer loan debt isn’t as common as credit card and auto loan debt, but it’s still considered bad as interest rates are usually between 10-28%.

                  Good debt is identified as investments in your future. Here are three common types of good debt:

                  • Student Loan Debt
                  • Mortgage Loan
                  • Business Loans

                  2. Decide Which Debt to Pay off First

                  Once you know each type of debt and their interest rates, you can begin to pay off debt quickly.

                  Focus on paying off bad debt first, regardless of if it is a credit card or auto loan. Start by paying off the loan with the highest interest rate first.

                  If you have several credit cards with different interest rates, you want to focus on the one with a higher APR. You will actually save more money by eliminating the card with the highest interest rate.

                  3. Don’t Pay the Minimum Amount

                  Paying the minimum amount digs you into a hole as interest rates will offset your payment. Even a small amount more than the minimum can help you pay off debt much faster.

                  Removing Obstacles to Pay off Debt Quickly

                  Creating a debt tracker and prioritizing a plan is simple, but avoiding temptation can be difficult.

                  1. Set a Reminder to Track Your Debt

                  “If you can’t measure it you can’t manage it.” -Peter Drucker

                  It’s so important to track your debt to ensure that you get it paid off quickly. Similar to working out and measuring your results, you need to track your debt constantly. Start with a weekly reminder, where you sign on and log your updated number. Did you increase, decrease, or stay the same?

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                  Regularly tracking your student loan balance can be incredibly motivating, as well. You will get a huge confidence boost each time you see your total debt amount decreases.

                  Set weekly and monthly goals so you can have short term wins and keep the momentum going.

                  2. Hide Your Credit Cards

                  If your biggest debt is credit cards, you need to eliminate temptation and remove them from your wallet.

                  Some people have gone to extreme measures by freezing their credit cards. Why? This would create an ice block around your card, which would require you to chip away at it slowly. This will give you time to think if it’s the best idea to buy that thing you’re about to buy.

                  3. Automate Everything

                  Willpower can be a huge downfall to paying off your debt. By automating your bills each month, you will ensure that willpower isn’t involved.

                  4. Plan Ahead

                  Getting out of debt will require some sacrifices, but with enough planning, you can make it work.

                  For example, if you know that you have a friend’s birthday or family dinner coming up, plan ahead for the costs. Whether you need to cut back on spending the week before, pick up a side job, or meet them after dinner, do what is needed.

                  5. Live Cheaply

                  The only way to get out of debt is to make some sacrifices on your spending habits. Find ways to save money each month so you can apply that amount to your outstanding debts. Here are some ways to save money each month:

                  • Live with roommates
                  • Cook dinners and prepare lunches for work instead of eating out
                  • Cut cable and choose Netflix or Amazon Prime
                  • Take public transit or bike to work

                  Finding the Lowest Interest Rates

                  The higher your interest rates, the harder (and longer) it will take you to pay off any debt.

                  If possible, you want to find ways to lower your interest rates to help get out of debt quickly. Here’s how you can get started:

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                  1. Maintain a High Credit Score

                  Your credit score will have a large impact on your ability to refinance your loans and receive a lower interest rate. If you have a low credit score, it’s unlikely you will be able to refinance your loans. Use these credit tips to increase and maintain an excellent score:

                  • Never miss a payment
                  • Don’t exceed 30% of your credit limit
                  • Don’t sign up for more than one card at once
                  • Limit hard inquires, like auto-loans and new credit cards
                  • Monitor frequently with free credit-tracking software

                  2. Find Balance Transfer Offers

                  Start by opening a free account on credit.com. Credit.com offers you the chance to open a free account and see what type of balance transfer offers you can receive. Some of your existing credit cards might already have 0% or lower APR balance transfer offers available.

                  Contact each of your credit card providers to ask about lowering your rate for a one-time balance transfer offer[2].

                  If you do take advantage of this option, make sure that you use a balance transfer and not a cash advance. Cash advances have a ton of high interest fees (15-25%, depending on your credit card) and will only compound your debt problem.

                  How to Get Rid of Debt Forever

                  Setting up a plan, removing temptations, and getting the lowest interest rates is the first step to get out of debt.

                  1. Keep Monitoring and Adjusting

                  Once you have a plan, don’t get comfortable. Track your debt payoff plan and make the necessary adjustments when needed.

                  Monitor your credit scores with a free site like CreditKarma. The higher your credit score climbs, the more likely you will be to secure a new, lower-interest loan.

                  2. Earn More Money

                  There are only so many ways to save money. Instead of clipping another coupon or making sacrifices for your morning coffee, find ways to earn more money!

                  Think about it…it is much easier to find ways to earn an extra $1,000 per month than find $1,000 to cut from your budget.

                  Here are some examples of ways to earn more money:

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                  Talk to Your Boss

                  Have a conversation with your boss about current salary and/or commission rates. If you’re not satisfied or want a change, don’t be afraid to look around at other positions. Some of them might even have a student loan debt reimbursement plan!

                  Start a Side Hustle

                  This could be coaching students on the weekends, driving for Uber, or taking paid online surveys. There are tons of ways to make money outside your 9-5. Now that you have a clear plan to pay off your debts, you’ll be more motivated than ever to figure out creative new ways to earn money.

                  Build an Online Business

                  There are so many websites and blogs that earn money from ads, affiliates, and other online products. Find your niche and get started.

                  3. Celebrate Your Wins

                  As you progress in your debt payoff journey, don’t forget to celebrate your wins. You need to always reward yourself for the hard work and discipline that is required to get out of debt.

                  While you shouldn’t celebrate so big that it increases debt, make sure to factor in little rewards to keep you motivated.

                  4. Set New Financial Goals

                  Eventually, with a plan and these steps, you can rid yourself of your debt. Once you do, make sure to celebrate your monumental achievement, but don’t stop there.

                  Now, you can focus on acquiring wealth and increasing your net worth. Set new financial goals so you have a new target to aim toward. Here’s how to set financial goals and actually meet them.

                  These could be anything now that you are debt free! Think about where you want to travel, buying your first home, or saving for your future retirement. Just like before, make sure that your goals are specific, measurable, and achievable.

                  Conclusion

                  Congrats, you can now set a plan in motion to finally pay off your debt quickly (and hopefully forever)!

                  Remember, if you want to get out of debt quickly, it’s not always easy. Just like any big goal, there will be sacrifices, challenges, and problems to overcome.

                  More Tips on Getting out of Debt

                  Featured photo credit: Pepi Stojanovski via unsplash.com

                  Reference

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