Planning, Organizing and Holding a Successful Yard or Garage Sale

A well-organized and well-planned yard sale is more appealing and makes it easier for shoppers to see what you have for sale.


Begin by sorting through your belongings and decide what you’re going to place in your yard sale. Then take a moment, sit down, and think through how you want to organize the items you will be selling.

You can sort things into boxes when you’re doing your initial sorting and purging.  Grocery, liquor and discount stores always have plenty of empty freight boxes, and they’re usually free for the taking.  Make sure you gather several sizes to accommodate different items.


Take a box with you, walk through and survey your house and your belongings, place your unwanted items in the box until it’s full.  Select a central location or room in your house to coordinate your sale items. Continue with this process until you’ve sorted through all your belongings in both your home, garage, attic, basement and crawlspace. If you have a separate storage unit be sure to include that in your sorting. Who knows maybe you will be able to sell enough items to make room for what is in the storage facility and save the monthly rent.


After you’ve gathered all your sale items, sort them into categories, this can be done either by type or price.  For example DVD movies can be $2 apiece or you can group them by type and price them individually.

Typically you will need a few tables to display your items. If you have a large assortment of clothes you may need a place or method to hang them for display. You will be in the sun all day so a chair out of the sun will be a necessity for you, maybe even a small canopy


You can do all the planning and organizing in the world and if nobody knows about your sale, all your work will be for naught. Arrange for an ad in a local paper, or pass out flyers. You can also put signs up on busy streets and corners with arrows directing buyers to your sale. Something else you will need is a cash box and change. Lots of singles and depending how you have things priced maybe you will need change also. Start saving those plastic grocery bags to use for people that purchase several small items.


Periodically during your sale, move items that haven’t sold to another table or re-locate them on the same table. However, don’t do this during times when you have lots of traffic.  If you notice certain categories of items are not selling as well as others, you might want to adjust your prices accordingly or move them closer to the entrance to your sale so they are more visible to those who drive by to see what goodies you have to offer.


After your sale is over, don’t take the items back in your house.  Contact your local rescue mission or charity thrift store and make arrangements to donate your items.  Most places will be happy to arrange a pickup time to come by and haul your things away, and will give you a receipt you can use for a tax write-off.

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