Blog by Dr. Lori

3 Yard Sale Selling Tips

3 Yard Sale Selling Tips

Have you heard me say "Don't Host a Yard Sale"? Enjoy your weekends as the weather gets warmer and don't waste time placing your valuables out in the yard--yes, valuables. But if you must host a sale, I suggest using these three selling guidelines

1. Yard Sale Dangers

The yard sale is the worst place to sell your stuff if you want to generate the most money. Plus, there are many dangers of letting people know what you have in your home as it now sits on your front yard. One danger is a robbery after your weekend yard sale. I've heard the stories you all have all told me about this type of under-reported theft. Read more stories about which items people sold at yard sales too cheaply losings tens of thousands of dollars.

2. Make Early Birds Pay

John Deere bike

Have you hosted a yard sale and received a knock at your door before the advertised start time? It's common since professional resellers want first pick. Maybe they want your valuable John Deere collectibles? To make more money at your sale, my suggestion is to make the early birds wait for everyone to arrive. More shoppers can spark a bidding war for items they want like old lunchboxes or valuable Marx toys. Or, you could charge early birds a premium fee to get first pick. I get a lot of hate mail when I share this tip. The most common is from resellers telling me that it is a yard sale and the stuff is supposed to be cheap. If you are hosting a yard sale, aren't you trying to make money as the host? My tips here are for yard sale hosts. Yard sale shoppers forget I provide buying tips for them too. Watch my video where I show you how to spot valuable marks on pottery at a yard sale.

3. Get Help and Assign Roles

Even though you have that old toaster oven priced at only one dollar, somebody will ask you if it is your best price. They will want to haggle and for some, that is part of the fun at a yard sale. Great, it should be fun, but if you are busy negotiating then who is dealing with that other person who is ready to pay for a piece of Wedgwood and who is helping another person who has a question if the lawn mower works? Make sure you have help for your yard sale and know your roles. Have one person who only negotiates, one who only deals with the cash, etc. It will be less confusing for everyone. I have been at yard sales where confusion has lost sales and even where thieves took advantage by walking away without paying.

Yard sales can be a lot of work and a lot of fun. As the host, just make sure you aren't putting out something valuable. People are always bringing antiques and collectibles to my events that are valuable and they tell me they bought them at a yard sale for next to nothing. Great for them, but do you want to lose money just because you didn't know? Do you have yard sale questions?

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