Garage Sale Story

I completed my first garage sale last week. Of course, I observed my mother conduct garage sales when I was growing up and after I moved back home, so I was familiar with the essentials, but this is the first one I’ve run myself.

I held a four-day garage sale: Thursday through Sunday.

I knew that signs were essential, so I put out signs Wednesday night. Thursday morning, one of the signs was gone. I put out another one. In the afternoon, people coming to the garage sale reported it had fallen. I put it up again. Sunday, I found 3 more signs were gone, and replaced them in the morning. They were all still there when I brought them home late Sunday afternoon. In total, we lost 4 signs over the weekend. Why would people take garage sale signs?

Most people came Thursday. Even after putting up additional signs on Friday, not many people came. Saturday was slow as well. Sunday practically no one came.

A lot of people drove to the end of the driveway, and, without getting out of their cars, peered toward the garage, and then drove away. What’s that about?

Before the garage sale, I tried to sell my items to stores which buy and sell used items. They wouldn’t take my books…told me they were worthless. They wouldn’t take my VHS tapes…told me they were worthless. They wouldn’t take my records…told me they were worthless. They wouldn’t take my jigsaw puzzles…told me they were worthless. This was a primary reason for having a garage sale in the first place. All the VHS tapes sold. Nearly all of the books sold. A huge quantity of the jigsaw puzzles sold. All of the 45 rpm records sold (to 2 people) and about half the record albums (33-1/3 rpm) sold. So much for them being worthless. So much for the idea that no one would want any of them.
What people didn’t seem to want (i.e. I only sold a few of these items): they didn’t buy the handbags or tote bags. They didn’t buy the clothing. They didn’t buy the art prints (mostly nature prints). They didn’t buy the stuffed animals. They didn’t buy the doll clothes. I didn’t sell a single gift bag, though I had 3 bins.

Although I did sell a lot of items (Thursday, at least), I still have a lot of items remaining. I’ll probably have another garage sale later in the summer. Here’s what I think I’ll do:

1. Make sure I have plenty of extra signs, and check them every day.
2. Have a 2-day sale: Thursday and Friday.
3. Put some items out on a table on the driveway. 

Posted by Joan Marie Verba at 5/8/2009 10:13 AM