Yard Sale Buying and Selling
By Cyndi Roberts
Yard sales (or garage sales as we call them in my part of Texas)
are a wonderful frugal source for almost anything you need.
They can also be a wonderful, frugal source of extra money
almost any time you need it.
When shopping at yard sales, it's important to remember that
most things you buy are not going to be in "new" condition, although
there are times when you will find items that are brand new, in
the box. And at a much lower price than in the store.
Most yard sales have lots of clothes for sale. But if you are
willing to take a closer look, you may find tons of treasures.
The other day I found a shiny cookie sheet in a box of "freebies"!
I was thrilled and so was my son, who didn't have one!
My grandchildren have tons of books, most of which have been
bought at yard sales. And all were in great condition and didn't
cost over 50 cents apiece. I keep a lookout for seasonal items
for kids such as coloring books, little stuffed animals, etc. Then
when Valentine's, Halloween or other holidays roll around, we
send the grandchildren a package filled with neat stuff for very
This summer I am also watching for "new-in-the-box" toys for
children of all ages. In December, I'm going to send them with
my son (who is in the Texas National Guard) to their annual
Toy Drive. But almost every community has some sort of toy
drive at Christmas time. This way, I will already have my
contributions and won't need to go out and spend more money during
the holiday season.
Yard sales are a great way to make some extra money, also. Plus,
you can get rid of unwanted items at the same time. My daughter
and I recently held a sale and here are some of the things we
Put up signs. The newspaper goofed the weekend of our sale and left
out all that week's yard sales. So we had to depend on our signs.
Put as many out as you can. Find out ahead of time what kind of
ordinances your town has about placement.
Take the time to make your signs...we bought ours and about
halfway through the first morning, we noticed that we weren't getting
any customers. So we checked out our signs--and they were gone!
We put out more and the customers started coming again. But it
And when you make your signs, be sure to make them sturdy enough
to stand up in the wind and also be sure your lettering is large
enough to be seen by people driving by in cars. I think a large
arrow pointing in the direction they need to go is helpful.
Be sure to plainly mark your items. It will save you lots of time
during the sale if you don't have to talk to each customer about the
price of every item. If you aren't sure what prices to ask, it might
help to go out to some yard sales yourself in the weeks before your
sale and check out what others are asking for items.
If you really want to get rid of something, be willing to negotiate
on the price. By the same token, if you really want to get a certain
amount, be willing to say no when someone asks for a price reduction.
When your yard sale is over, if you are lucky, you have space to
store the leftovers until next time you need to hold a sale.
However, if you're not one of the "lucky" ones, consider donating
your items to the local Goodwill box.
Helping you live the good life...on a budget!
Cyndi Roberts is the editor of the "1 Frugal Friend 2 Another"
bi-weekly e-newsletter and founder of the website of the same name.
Visit http://www.cynroberts.com to find
creative tips, articles, and
a free e-cooking book. Subscribe to the e-newsletter and receive the
free e-course "Taming the Monster Grocery Bill".