There are a number of times in your life when you have too much stuff that you’re just not using anymore and one of the easiest way to get rid of it is to have a yard sale.
Yard or Garage Sales are best suited to things that are not really expensive but are in good condition. They are also very good for large items that are just too expensive to ship by mail. If you have a number of smaller items that you can ship then you should try selling them online first and what you can’t sell in a reasonable amount of time can be added to your yard sale.
Pricing your items is very important. In the spirit of this type of sale you always want to price things reasonably but higher than what you really want or need to get for them. This allows your visitors to negotiate a bit on the price and it allows you to make larger deals by grouping items and providing a discount.
How do you know what price you should place on an item?
There are a few considerations when pricing your items. You must take into account the market value of the item and also the return you need. If you recently purchased a lawn tractor and it is less than 3 years old you should investigate the average price with the consideration of what you paid for it.
If you see on a online classifieds site that lawn tractors are going for an average of $500 but you recently paid $1,500 for your tractor then you can not set the price at the average. On the other hand if you list your tractor in your classified’s inventory there may be a number of people expecting to pay that. You should have proper documentation at hand to prove the age of the equipment and its value. If it is in good condition with no damage you can consider an average depreciation due to your using it. Three years in the life of a lawn tractor is about a third of its lifespan so you will be right to take a third off of the price you paid and start your pricing at around $1,000. You must also consider the price of similar tractors that can be purchased new. If the price has dropped in the value of your tractor because the manufacturer is now installing larger engines and more standard features that you paid extra for… or if very similar tractors are available for new from a different manufacturer for the price you are asking you would be right to lower your price.
For instance there are three main lines of tractors on the market today but they all come with the same or similar engines and features. You might find they all have Briggs and Stratton engines of the same model and size. The same cutting width. The same add on features like a rear bagger. Unfortunately you are up against this and you must take that into account.
The same is true for every item you might sell whether it is gently used clothing or your home entertainment center.
Once you have priced your items on paper you want to label some of them so you aren’t running back and forth answering prices all day. I suggest you put prices on your larger value items this will discourage people who are wanting to low cut your price.
Advertising your yard sale
It is important to find where people in your area look for information about personal sales. Whether you are in the city or in a rural area it may be that everyone looks online. This is a great place to advertise if it is for free.
When you are advertising online you want to list your sale earlier on less popular websites but whichever site you pick you want to update your listing every day so people see it in the main list of up coming events.
Newspapers are good but a better place might be a small circular that announces this type of sale along with other items for sale.
Honestly I would not consider placing ads on supermarket walls or other public places like that however you should have good signage on the day of the sale. Remember to ask permission before placing any yard signs on corners. People live there too and they might not be very happy about your sign. Also your department of transportation will have rules about how far from a road any sign must be. It might be far enough away from the road to make your lettering so small no one can read it. Take not of how others do this before you decide to do it for your sale.
Pricing right is just as important as knowing the value of the item you are selling. If you under price your items you will be losing money and if you overprice them you will never sell them.
Research how other people hold yard sales by attending a few. There is a definite decorum that must be followed and remember you’re not a retail store so people expect a different type of sale.