YORKIES AND YARD SALES BY DE ANN SMALLWOOD

I just got home for a large church yard sale that nets close to $3000 annually. I can tell you first hand the work that goes into having this successful of a yard sale. Planning, gathering items, and sorting starts in January for the June sale. Not only does it involve hard work beforehand, it takes scads of volunteers willing to put in hours. But, hey, don’t get me wrong. I love yard sales. I try to hit as many as I can each summer. Sure I buy things I don’t need. I rush home and gleefully unload the car of my goodies. Then when I tire of them or find they weren’t what I needed or expected, I donate them to ARC or Goodwill. That gives me room and incentive to hit the sales again and again. In light of all this, I decided to research the in’s and out’s of having a successful yard sale.

The best months for having a yard sale are: April, May, June and September. Early spring is a great time because us shoppers are suffering from cabin fever and are ready to get out and find bargains.

What shouldn’t you buy at a yard sale: cosmetics, nonstick pans, running shoes (no problem too much effort), mattresses, and some electrical items.

If you decide to have your own yard sale how much money can you make? The NEW YORK TIMES said you could net between $500 and $1000. That’s food for thought. I’m sure my yard sale wouldn’t bring near that much.

Okay, so you’re having a yard sale. How should you proceed: set date (duh!), bundle items , visible pricing (more on this later), sort and do work ahead (not a good idea to wait until morning before sale, if you say starting at 9:00am people will show up at 7:00am, clean your closet, and take a good look at the garage.

What sells best: old games, furniture, vintage dishes, camping gear, costume jewelry, and fishing rods. Toys in good shape sell well.

How much money to have on hand for change: 2 rolls quarters, 50-$1 bills, 10-$5 bills, 5-$10 bills.

How to price items: use the 50-30-10 rule. New items sell at 50% of retail price. Slightly used items 25-30% of retail and well worn items at 10%.

How to make money at yard sales: be organized, don’t put a price on anything (one place I looked said make prices clear, hmmm), start on Thursday or Friday, and BE FRIENDLY. Hard to do sometimes ’cause people mutter about prices and love to give LOW offers.

So is it worth it? I honestly don’t know. Have one and you’ll answer that for yourself. For me…no. Hard work and tiring days. Remember, your time is worth something.

However, today I found a great watering jar for my Yorkies. They have two, but what the heck this one is a pretty blue and both Yorkie babies are boys.

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