House Full of Clutter: The Best Garage Sale Tips

Do you feel like there isn’t enough space in your home? Is your closet overflowing with clothes you haven’t worn since Huey Lewis topped the charts? Is that garage of yours packed to the max with boxes containing books, hunting gear or Halloween decorations from the year 1998? It is time to do something about it. Having a garage sale is a great way to recycle old items such as sporting gear, furniture, books, clothes etc. Take a look at our garage sale tips and clean out your house full of clutter!

Laws and Regulations

First, contact your city and ask if you need to purchase a permit for your garage sale. Some cities have restrictions on hours of operation and sign placement, and it’s better to know in advance than to avoidable fines and fees.


Making an inventory list with prices assigned to each item will give you a nice overview and help you answer customers’ questions during the day of your garage sale. Keep the larger items specific, but simplify some of the smaller things by pricing and grouping in categories.

What Do You Sell?

When it comes to garage sales, it is easier to point out what not to sell. You will have a hard time selling dirty or broken items, swimsuits, make up and perfume.
Sometimes it can be difficult to part with things, but if you haven’t used it since 2008 you probably won’t miss it. For sentimental items, organize them into labeled boxes or totes, and store them somewhere safe and dry so that they can be found in the future.

Price Tags

Mark colorful stickers with your desired price on each item. If you have many items of the same kind that are also the same price (i.e. magazines or books), you can just put them in a labeled box.

Advertise, Advertise, Advertise

Advertise your yard sale on social media such as Facebook and Instagram, as well as in your local newspaper. An ad on craigslist that includes a map is also a good idea. List some of the most attractive items you have for sale and upload pictures on the social media sites. A couple of days before the event, it is a good idea put up large, easy-to-read signs with arrows pointing in the direction of your yard sale. If you have a lot of items, you should consider dividing the sale up over two days (preferably between Saturday and Sunday).

A Couple of Days Prior to the Sale

Make sure you have lots of change. Quarters and one-dollar bills are hot commodity in the yard sale business! A fanny pack is a great way to keep the money safe and easily accessible during your sale. Also, it is a good idea to mow your lawn and tidy up your yard

Day of the Garage Sale

Set up your items early in the morning. Group similar things together (think “department store”) and place your best items up front. Make sure your display is organized with price labels clearly shown. A box labeled “free” up front is a great way to lure customers in (and you will get rid of the things you thought nobody would pay for!). Make access easy by parking your car down the street a few houses, which will free up parking for shoppers and help to keep your sale visible from the street. Greet your customers with a smile and be flexible and willing to negotiate on the price. Offer package and two-for-one deals in order to sell as much as possible.

When the Sale is Over

Take all your signs down and place an ad online with a set time-frame in which you offer the remaining items for free. All people have to do is to come by and pick up what they want from your yard!

Holding a successful garage sale does take some time and planning, however, you will soon be enjoying your uncluttered home and maybe even have a pocket full of money to spend as you please.