Yard Sale Tips

Spring is yard sale season, it’s time to start planning. Here are a few tips to help your yard sale run smoothly.


  • Start by decluttering. Going through and deciding what to sell is one of the hardest things to do. For tips on purging your closets and home, check out our tips in Downsizing: What to Keep or The Truth about Your New Year’s Resolution to Get Organized.
  • Decide on a date. Look at other advertisements to see if there are other sales or community events the same weekend as yours. Note: If there are sales the same time as yours they may detract from yours & you may not see very many people. This will leave you with more items to get rid of at the end of your event. Don’t forget to decide what days you’d like to have your sale – all weekend, just Saturday.
  • Check the weather for the date(s) you’d like to have your sale. If it’s more than a week away ensure you keep checking. If there is a chance of rain you may want to have an indoor option as a backup.
  • Selling clothing –hang them up. It’s much easier to sift through hung clothes than those laid out on tables. It means less folding and clean up for you between customers.
  • Decide on prices and label your items. You can get labels at your local Dollar Store or use masking tape and a marker. Price your items fairly. If you’re unsure visit another garage sale to see what prices are like.


Getting Ready (Few days prior)

  • If your sale is indoors, set up your tables and racks ahead of time.
  • Grab your float. Be sure to account for small change too especially if your prices are not fixed. For my sale last year I used $150 as the starting float. This included (2) $10 bills, (7) $5 bills, 1 roll of toonies, loonies, quarters, dimes and nickels + an extra toonie & loonie.
  • Organize sale items, grouping like items together.
  • Do you have boxes of things being sold together? Be sure that most, if not all, the items in the box can be seen. This will prevent items from getting separated from their group.
  • Update your advertising – signs are out, and online advertising is fresh and at the top of the page. This means people won’t have to search through pages to get to your post, they will see your event before the rest which means more customers for you!
  • If you have plastic bags laying around, bring them out for your customers to put their items in to take home.
  • Make arrangements for any unsold items. Have a vehicle to take the items to Good Will or see if there are local groups in need of these items.

Day of

  • Check price labels to make sure that your items are properly priced.
  • Be sure to have at least two people manning the sale. More is better in case people have questions, concerns, or would like to make purchases.
  • Have FUN!

You’ve successfully had your first yard sale! Now it’s time to take down the signage, close the doors and count your money. After all is said and done, take the family or yourself out for dinner you’ve earned it. Something we missed? Tell us below!

–Kayla Akerstrom