A yard sale seems like a pretty simple affair. Put all of your unwanted junk in the yard, or garage for those who are a little more refined, let people know about the event and match new owners with what have suddenly become treasures. All the while making a few bucks.
But there is a lot of work that goes into this whole process. The main thing is being able to let go of your junk. And to realize that no matter how much you may have once liked it, the new owner isn’t going to pay anywhere near as much for it as you did. That thirty-five dollar shirt is now worth two bucks. Maybe.
My big fear when doing one of these things has always been running out of change. You need to start out with a lot of one dollar bills and quarters. To make change for the fifty cent shirts. And you need plastic bags for your customers to put all their new stuff in. Of course you have to price all this stuff, and be prepared to change the price in midstream. Nobody pays the sticker price. Even something marked for twenty-five cents has room for negotiation. Funny how that piece of junk you are desperate to get rid of takes on much greater value when someone is trying to get it from you for a song. Make sure it’s all nicely displayed so people can see it. And be awake at the crack of dawn for early birds, even when your advertisement specifies no early birds.
Sellers are usually people who do this once in a while to clean out their closets, garage or basement. Buyers on the other hand are often professional yard sale goers. They come in knowing exactly what they want, look around, buy it if you have it, and get out to go to the next garage or yard. This is their business. Buy and sell. Enterprising entrepreneurs. I’m not there yet. I go and look and think about what might sell or resell, and what won’t. I mostly look, and buy a few things that I like that will fill up my house until I clean it out again.
What I like best is seeing all the people who come out. Whether you are a buyer or seller, first timer or pro, in it for fun or profit, the yardsale is part of your personal history. Small part. Large part. Make some notes about how much fun it was. Perhaps you too will become a pro. www.personalhistorywriter.com