Garage & Yard Sale season is fast approaching, and we have some great tips on how to Master the Yard Sale... We are now in the middle of Spring's hot real estate market, which means that a lot of people are moving. This in turn leads to an abundance of yard sales.

If you're Buying:

  1. Dress down: If you want to get the best prices at a yard sale, don't step out in your Sunday best. Sellers often judge how much you'll pay by the clothes you're wearing. If you look like you have a lot of disposable income, you'll have less luck bargaining. So if you happen to drive a fancy car, park it down the block and walk up to the sale. Leave you Lululemon outfit at home!
  2. Build a relationship with the seller: A good sense of humour goes a long way. If you've made friends with the person thats selling, you're going to make the best deal. Being friendly isn't difficult. It's as simple as mentioning that the fine china the seller has on a table brings back fond memories of the kind your grandmother had.
  3. Ask for a group price: Haggling over 10 individual items will frustrate the seller, so if you want to buy multiple things at a sale, buy them as a group. If you say, Can I start a little pile over here? They'll say, Oh, we have a buyer here. Then say, How much for all this? You're guaranteed to get a better deal going out of the gate that way. If the seller quotes you $50 but you only want to spend $30, start moving things from your pile back to the table. I will tell you that it works every time. As soon as you start putting things back, they're going to make a deal quick!

If you're Selling:

  1. Use the "Dime on a Dollar" rule: Don't forget that your things are used when you price them. It's tacky to ask retail value. "If its something you paid $100 for and you used it for five years, its probably worth $10," You can tell somethings overpriced if 15 people look at it but nobody buys it, so adjust accordingly.
  2. Save the good stuff for eBay: If you have to defend an item's price with a long story about how it's a valuable artifact from the 17th century, you shouldn't be selling it at a garage sale.
  3. Be careful with price stickers: Use easy-peel stickers or tape to label prices, or just put a sign on a table if you don't want to damage the product. That big, black "50 cents" you've scrawled on a book with permanent marker could kill a potential sale. Sales on vintage items have been lost because of the glue from a sticker being left on the product. Use your common sense.

Our final tip for all of you Grey Bruce folks heading out to do some yard sales this weekend: Drive by first, if you see people leaving empty handed then it's probably a dud!