If you’re a caregiver looking to help your parents downsize, a yard sale is one of the best ways to go about it. These tips will help you to prepare, price, and present your items to get the most out of your time and money.
Talk to Your Parents About a Yard Sale
With any luck, your parents will be enthusiastic about selling their items. If they are reluctant, talk to them about the benefits of having a sale. Mention positive outcomes like additional money, not having to pay to have things hauled away, and finding people who genuinely love their old items.
Spread the Word
Advertising is important; it brings in both regular yard sale hunters and people looking for specific items. The good news is that there are several places to advertise that are inexpensive or free, like Craigslist or Facebook. Create an online posting for your sale and list some of the bigger-ticket items you’ll have available. Be sure to include photos. List all the details of your sale clearly, including start time, end time, and directions.
Attract Buyers’ Attention
Create signage that will draw in potential customers. Use bright colors and clear markings with plenty of arrows pointing the way to the sale. Remember, people reading the signs will be driving and won’t be able to read smaller print as they whiz by. Placing some of your big-ticket items close to the street will help give buyers the sense that you’ve got a lot of valuable things to sell.
Presentation Is Everything
Before the sale begins, take a step back and view your sale from a distance. Are things arranged in an inviting way? Make sure that potential buyers have a pleasant shopping experience by staging your items in vignettes and grouping similar items together. For instance, keep all your dishes on one table with a place setting that shows off the set, or place jewelry near a mirror to make each piece easier to see and try on. Also, make sure that any linens and clothing are clean and pressed.
Price It to Sell
While your caregiver duties may include helping to clear things out, it’s okay to share with customers how much certain things meant to you or your parents. Yard sale buyers love to get items that have a personal story behind them. It can be difficult to sell items that have sentimental value, but remember that the items you don’t sell may end up being donated to a charity in need.
Price items with some room for haggling. As a rule, flea market vendors generally mark items 20 percent above their desired price. The price that you settle upon should be displayed clearly on every item. If it gets late in the day and items haven’t sold, clearly mark them as discounted so buyers know they’re getting a deal.
By following these steps, you can ensure a successful yard sale that will help your parents prepare for their upcoming transition — all while earning a little money on the side.