Tips for Yard Sale Success

The sun is shining, the trees are budding, and the sweet sound of birds chirping fills the warm spring air, making it the perfect day to have a successful yard sale that will bring in lots of cash. Outdoor activity without gloves, hats, mittens, and snowsuits can commence once again. For many, the preferred outdoor activity isn’t bike riding, it isn’t roller blading, nor is it gardening. Their favorite spring sport is yard sale-ing.

You will need to advertise to have a successful yard sale. If you do not, then what is the point of having one? Newspapers have special yard sale advertisement rates, and some include yard sale kits.  Go in with a few neighbors and split the cost.  Selling one large item will more than make up for the cost of an ad and some signs. 

Good signs will lead your customers to your sale.  Remember, no advertising or signs can lead to no customers, and therefore, your yard sale will not be successful or earn you some needed money.

Place the signs at intersections near your home. Make them one color, preferably one of those bright neon green, pink or orange oaktag. Keep them uniform so that your customers know that it is your sale. Using a thick black Sharpie marker, write the address, date and time in large letters (at least three inches tall) . Use large dark arrows on the neon paper as customers get nearer. Qucik fundraising ideas for kids-have a yard saleCredit:

Price your items realistically. The object of a yard sale is to make some money selling items you no longer need, not to recoup the original cost of the item. Do not place a print out of what the item is selling for on Ebay, because you are not selling the item on Ebay-you are selling it at a garage sale! People will buy on Ebay if they want to pay Ebay prices.


Be sure to set your price higher than what you will take for large items like furniture. For example, if you want $100 for a kitchen set, then price it at $125 so you have some wiggle room and the buyer thinks she got a deal.

Pricing your items correctly will also help your yard sale to be successful.

What should things cost? Here is a guideline:

Books-paperback 25-50 cents, hardcover 50 cents to $1.00

VHS-25-50 cents if really want to get rid of them. Otherwise, sell them for $1.00. Yes, even for Disney movies in clamshell cases.


Picture frames-25 cents to $1.00

Kitchen tools-25 cents to $1.00

Children’s toys-small ones, 25-50 cents, larger ones 50 cents to $2.00.

Games (make sure all of the pieces are there) 50 cents for preschool games and $1.00 for board games

Clothing-it depends on the condition, the brand, and the size. Price baby items 50 cents to $1.00, and clothing for older children at $1.00 per item. Coats can be priced higher, in the $3.00-$5.00 range.

Floral vases-10-25 cents

Miscellaneous items-keep these things under three dollars

Place price stickers on everything. When customers know what the price is, it is easier for them to decide if they want to buy it. Constantly having to ask for prices will tend to drive customers away.A successful yard sale has price stickers on all itemsCredit:

You may also want to organize your items by price; i.e. a 25 cent table, a 50 cent table, etc. Or you can organize it by room-kitchen, bathroom, etc.

Other Helpful Tips for Having a Successful Yard Sale

Go to the bank and get fifty dollars in singles and at least 10-20 dollars in quarters. Always have one person in charge of the money and watch it at all times.

Have a t least 3-4 people working your sale with you and watching the merchandise. Unfortunately, there are some people who come to yard sales to steal.

If no one is staying in the house, you may want to consider locking all of the doors. Someone may try to sneak into your home while you are busy with the customers outside.

Put Fido in the house for the day. Having swarms of strangers around the house may make your normally docile canine crazy.

Get a babysitter for small children. Keep them inside the house and out of the way.

Older children who are helping should not bother the customers. They will ask questions if they need more information.

If your kids want to earn some cash, have them sell cold water, soda and bagged chips. Price them to sell.

Have a stash of plastic shopping bags for your customers to take your items away.

At the end of your yard sale, put everything inside the boxes, pack them in your car, and take them to your local Goodwill or Salvation Army. Do not bring these things back into the house!

Following these tips to have a successful yard sale that will bring in lots of cash will leave you with a lot more space inside your home.

More Tips for Making Money at Yard Sales

Yard Sale
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(price as of Mar 3, 2014)
This book will tell you how to have the biggest money making yard sale you can. You will recoup the cost of the book within the first few minutes of your sale!