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Organize a Family Garage Sale While Saving the Earth

Organize a Family Garage Sale While Saving the Earth

Why would you decide to have a family garage gale? People with different interests accumulate different items, and if you don’t jive with one seller’s articles, you might like what another seller has to offer. 

Multiple sellers also mean more exposure. The more people you have selling, the more people you’d have shared the event with their friends. If you don’t have enough of your stuff to make a giant garage sale, you will benefit from having a multi-family garage sale. 

Serious garage sale shoppers will always head for a group garage sale first because they know there will be a vast range of items to look through in one spot. The most significant advantage is keeping all those extra items out of the landfill on bulk trash day. 

Tips for Planning a Multi-family Yard Sale

  • Planning is the key. Start early pricing and organizing items for your yard sale. Then start advertising 1-2 weeks before the sale date. You can post flyers on local Grocery store, Community center, Gym, Local churches, and Thrift store bulletin boards. 
  • Decide where you’re going to have your garage sale. Ideally, a house located off a busy street has the most indoor-outdoor space for organizing before and during the sale. I hang clothes on trees and off fences, spread things out to give more space creating a festive atmosphere.  
  • I suggest that you combine items by category to make the best impression for people driving by. Have everyone drop off the items ten days to a week before the sale. That way, you can get everything organized into a category.
  • Figure out how you’re going to keep track of each family’s sales. I prefer to use different colored painter’s tape as price stickers. On the day of the deal, the price stickers get affixed to a blank page in a spiral-bound notebook as each item is sold along with a bar code so you can take credit cards — all blue stickers on one page, green stickers on another, etc. 
  • You can also easily ask each family to put their initials on each tag, then use a notebook to track the initials and amount each item sold for. I keep all prices the same, so $1.00 for shirts $3.00 for pants. If the other party wants a different amount for an item, we decided to have them put that price along with their initials so the cashier can easily find that price.
  • Have a plan for bargain hunters. For example, who is going to make the call on accepting lower prices on items. This is sometimes the person taking the cash, but maybe if you have a big sale, someone will wander around and answer questions. 
  • Make sure everyone has priced their items before the day of the sale. This way, it is done well before the day garage sale. All kinds of things will pop up the week and the day of the deal, and you want this part already done; the last thing you need is the headache associated with on-the-spot pricing!
  • Make a list of everyone’s assigned roles have, and all the details ironed out a few days before the sale. Take time to talk about the scenarios that are bound to happen with everyone. Trust me; it’s best to have a plan in mind to deal with minor issues on the day of the sale. 
    • Gather all tables, boxes, crates, blankets, sheets, tarps, etc., that will be used to display items at the sale. You will want to assign this to someone who can gather these items and bring them all to the place you are holding the sale. 
    • Organize all individual sale items into meaningful categories and how the garage sale will be laid out on paper ahead of time. That way, you can pass copies out, and others can help set up on garage sale day. 
    • Arrange all the items on garage sale day and who will keep the things on the tables organized.
    • Make signs before the sale, put up garage sale signs on all major intersections, then take down the signs after the sale. Put up flyers on local bulletin boards, churches, local grocery stores, etc. (use your imagination).
    • Create a garage sale post for social media, create a list of sites, and keep the posts updated. Remember there are local GS groups, community pages, local buy and sale groups, your neighborhood social pages, and craigslist. Post often, and remember to include your dates, times, address, and payment methods.
    • Be responsible for the money from start to finish. That would be from getting petty cash before the sale to being a cashier on the day of the sale and splitting up the profits after the sale. This way, you know someone is always with the cash box. They also should set up a pick-up time with a local charity for some time after the sale.
    • Have a plan on how the end of the garage sale will look like. Despite what your closing time says on your signs and in the ads, the time to close is up to you. You should base this on how much you’ve sold (if all the good stuff is gone) or how many people stopped by your sale. Remember if you choose to close early to take down the signs and ads. 
    • Agree ahead of time on how all the yard sale leftovers will be dealt with. Ideally, they’ll all be taken immediately to charity and donated. If someone says they want their items back (rather than presenting them to charity), let them know they need to take them, or you will be donating everything left to charity the next day (arrange for a charity to pick up the remaining items).

When you have a family or a group garage sale, you start with a gathering of people; I love to add treats and beverages to the sale; this makes it a garage sale and a celebration all at the same time. Most of all remember to have fun. 

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