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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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                  Published on September 17, 2018

                  How Being Smart With Your Money Leads to Financial Success

                  How Being Smart With Your Money Leads to Financial Success

                  Achieving financial success is not something that just happens. Maybe if you win the lottery or something, but for the average person like you or me, it comes from a series of small steps you take over a long period of time.

                  With each step, you form a new smart money habit. And with each smart money habit, you build towards financial independence.

                  So what sort of habits can you form to get on that path? Let’s take a look at smart money habits you can start today to get you closer to a financially independent future.

                  1. Avoid being “penny wise but pound foolish”

                  It’s tempting to try saving a couple cents here and there when buying small items. However, that’s not where the real money is saved. You’re putting in extra effort for something that doesn’t move the needle.

                  You get the most bang when you’re able to cut down on your bigger bills. For example, finding a lower interest rate for your mortgage could save you $50+ per month. And cutting your transportation bill by purchasing a cheaper car or taking public transportation can provide large gains as well.

                  So, look at your recurring expenses such as housing, transportation, and insurance, and see where there’s wiggle room. It’s a much better use of your time than trying to pinch pennies here and there on smaller purchases.

                  2. When you want something big, wait

                  Impulsivity can get you in trouble in most aspects of life. Finances are no different.

                  It’s human nature to see something and want it right then and there. It starts as a kid in the checkout line at the grocery store, and it continues on through adulthood.

                  We get an idea in our head of something we want, and it’s hard not to go out and get it right then.

                  A good example is wanting a new car. Perhaps you’ve had your car for several years. It’s crossed the 100k mile mark. Maybe maintenance is due, and you’re annoyed that you need to replace the timing belt or purchase new tires.

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                  So, you get the itch.

                  You start digging around online, and you realize you could trade in your current car for something newer and more exciting… all for a few hundred bucks a month. Then you get obsessed.

                  Here’s where you have to take a step back.

                  Your newfound obsession is clouding your judgement. Rather than giving into the impulse, wait it out.

                  Set a timeframe for yourself. Maybe you come back to the decision three months down the road. See if the obsession lasts.

                  It might, but often, a funny thing happens. Often, you forget about it. And often, you find that the new car wasn’t a need at all.

                  The impulse faded. And you just saved yourself a ton of money.

                  3. Live smaller than you can afford

                  You finally get that big raise. And you want to celebrate – and why not?

                  You’ve been looking forward to this forever. And after all, it was all due to your hard work.

                  That’s fine, splurge a little. However, make it a one-time deal and be done.

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                  Don’t get caught in the trap that just because you’re now making more money, you should spend more.

                  Too often, people get more money and feel like they that gives them the means to buy a bigger house, a bigger car… you know the drill. Resist.

                  The fact is that living smaller than what you can afford is one of the fastest ways to build savings.

                  But if you constantly upgrade as you begin to make more, then you’ll never get ahead. You’ll just build up more debt along the way and have just as little wiggle room as before.

                  4. Practice smart grocery shopping

                  Food… it’s one of the biggest portions of any budget. And if you’re not careful, it can be one of the biggest drains on your wallet.

                  But luckily, there are a few things you can do to ensure that you stay smart with your money when buying groceries.

                  Create a grocery budget

                  Set a strict weekly grocery budget. When you know how much you can spend on groceries, you can then plan your weekly menu around it.

                  Once you know what all you need, you can go shopping and keep a running tally as you shop to ensure you’re on track.

                  I tend to do this in my head, rounding for each item. However, writing it down as you go would probably work best for most people.

                  Make a list… and never deviate

                  Never go to the grocery store without a list. If you go to the store with a ballpark idea in mind, you don’t have a true ide of what you need.

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                  You’re not well-researched. You don’t know what the sales are. As a result, you’re going to make decisions on the fly.

                  These impulse decisions will lead to overspending, which will derail your grocery budget.

                  Eat before going grocery shopping

                  It’s also important to eat prior to going to the grocery store. Hunger is a powerful force.

                  If you’re shopping on an empty stomach, everything is going to look good. In particular, you may find a lot of ready-made, processed snacks will look enticing.

                  After all, you’re hungry now and that food is easily available. So subconsciously, you may lean towards those items.

                  Unfortunately, not only are those items typically less healthy, but they’re likely more expensive. You pay for convenience.

                  However, when you eat prior to shopping, then you’ll shop with a clear mind. Your hunger won’t cloud your judgement, influencing you to make poor decisions like a cartoon devil resting on your shoulder whispering in your ear.

                  This makes it much easier to stick to your grocery plan.

                  5. Cancel your gym membership

                  Now that you’re all set on your food, it’s time to get smart about managing your budget in terms of physical fitness. And let’s begin by avoiding the gym. The gym bill, that is.

                  The average gym membership costs around $60 per month. That’s $720 a year.

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                  Yet, two out of three gym memberships go unused. That means two-thirds of people who have a gym membership are literally giving away almost a thousand bucks a year. It’s crazy!

                  I recommend seeking an alternative. One good alternative is to look into fitness streaming services.

                  Streaming services allow you to stream hundreds of workouts like Insanity and p90x, right in your own home for around $10-20 a month. That’s $40-50 less a month than the average gym membership.

                  Of course, then there’s the free option. The internet is full of free workouts that you can do on your own with minimal or no equipment.

                  For example, there’s the Couch to 5K program, that I personally used a decade ago to ease myself from couch potato to running my first 5K race. If I could do it, anyone could.

                  Then there are free resources like reddit that have limitless information on workouts. The Fitness subreddit has done all the research for you, populating workout tips and detailed workout routines for anyone to use in their wiki.

                  There are several routines that require no equipment. And you can join in on the subreddit to become part of the community, making it easier for those seeking comraderie and encouragement in their fitness goals. All for free.

                  It’s baby steps… And baby steps can start now!

                  I’ve never met anyone that can’t stand to be a bit smarter with their money. And on the flip side, anyone can get smarter with their money. But remember, it doesn’t happen all at once.

                  Begin by fighting your impulses. Prepare for the week and be smart at the store. And cut monthly expenses like gym memberships that are overpriced and you probably aren’t getting your money’s worth out of anyway.

                  The devil is in the details. And the details can change your lifestyle and prep you for a financially independent future.

                  Featured photo credit: Unsplash via unsplash.com

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