Check for permits
You can’t hold a successful garage sale if there are laws that prevent you from doing so in the first place. In many cities, it’s illegal to hold a garage sale without a permit. Check with your city clerk or town hall to avoid getting fined or shut down. Most cities have this information available online, so be sure to do your research before you set up shop!
Pick a date
Once you get the green light from your locality, it’s time to block off your calendar for the big day. Just as there are better times to plan your move, there are better times to plan your garage sale. The key to picking a date for your garage sale is to ensure it doesn’t interfere with customers’ schedules. For this reason, the weekend is the optimal time to hold your garage sale. It’s also a good idea to plan for a multi-day sale. The more options buyers have, the more likely they are to come around.
It’s also critical that you take weather into consideration when picking your hours of operation. In other words, if your garage sale is in the middle of August, you shouldn’t be opening and closing between the hours of noon and five o’clock when the sun is at its peak. Knowing how to hold a successful garage sale means knowing your customers’ needs.
Pack, sell or donate
Now it’s time to organize your inventory. As you pack up each room, be sure you’re separating the items you want to sell or donate from the rest. Label boxes and group together items based on their purposes. For example, your old china and toaster will go into “kitchen” and your old speaker and headphones will go into “tech.” It will save you from any confusion down the line and will keep displays organized when setting up for your garage sale.
Knowing how to hold a successful garage sale means knowing the value of preparation. Just as you would create a moving checklist, create a garage sale checklist! Start gathering the supplies you’ll need in advance so you’re not scrambling the night before. It’s easy to do this without breaking the bank as you probably already have a lot of the things you’ll need. Folding tables, chairs, shelves, or even crates and a piece of plywood will suffice as displays. Grab some tablecloths for nice presentation, and open up an umbrella to cool down in the outdoor heat. Bright posters, price tags, permanent markers, bubble wrap, and a cash box (or a manila envelope) are just a few supplies you’ll need.