yard sale, how to hold successful joyful organizer pragmaticmom pragmatic mom

How To: Hold a Successful Yard Sale

What You Need to Know Before Having a Yard Sale

I found a great snippet on This Old House Magazine and wanted to add their pearls of wisdom. They stress the importance of titling your event wisely. ESTATE SALE or MOVING SALE will draw a bigger crowd than Yard Sale. Of course! This is just good marketing!

Getting the word out is the single most important factor in determining success of your yard sale. TOH recommends saving posters and signs for day of sale. Ads in local newspapers, online or public bulletin boards are also important.

Their last idea was to offer freebies. Buy one, get one free is a great phrase to use when publicizing your event. And a great way to get rid of say… stuffed animals that no one else will take including charities!

p.s. More organization posts:

Top 10: Tips to Organize Your Kids 

12 Ways to Get Organized Before the Holidays!

Easy Playroom Organization

More tips on organization are here.


For many of us, spring-cleaning is an annual ritual. However, don’t stop at washing the floors and vacuuming under the bed. Spring is a great time to tackle your organizational projects. Once you have done this, make some money and clean out your home!

Below you will find some tips on how to make your yard sale as profitable and successful as possible.

  • Set up signs around your neighborhood, in grocery stores and on free online listings, such as Craig’s List.
  • Check with your neighbors and let them know about the expected increase in traffic. Confirm that you have no neighbored rules regarding yard sales.
  • Consider having a neighborhood yard sale. More items for sale will drawmore customers.
  • On the day of the yard sale, post clear signs directing potential customers to your home. Post them in both directions. Remember to take them
  • down after your event. Decorate your yard with balloons, banners andstreamers to catch the eye of passers by.
  • Ask family members if they have items they would like you to sell at your yard sale.
  • You want to make your customers as comfortable as possible. Have some baked goods and drinks on hand for them to enjoy while they browse.
  • Make sure the area you are using is bright enough. Use spotlights and lamps from your home if necessary.
  • Have extension cords on hand so customers can test appliances. If they know it works, they will be more likely to take it home!
  • If you are selling clothes, put a full-length mirror out for customers to use.
  • Make sure you lock your home and garage. You will not be able to pay attention to your home for most of the day.
  • Use a fanny pack instead of a moneybox to store change and customer’spayments. Even a locked moneybox can be stolen.
  • Clearly mark each item with its price. Use blue painter’s tape so the item will not be damaged.
  • Have boxes and bags ready for your customer’s to take home their newtreasures in.
  • Create a children’s section so that kids can play with toys before they purchase them. This also allows the adults to shop quietly.
  • Have bargains! Yard sale customers love bargains so have a table where all items costs $1, have a 50% off bin, and even a buy one get one table!
  • Also, be ready to bargain with customers!
  • Have tarps or tents ready, or an alternative date ready in case of rain!
  • Have a back up plan ready for the items that do not get sold.
  • A yard sale can be a great way to clean out your house and make some money while doing it! Weigh the advantages and disadvantages of your time commitment versus your possible tax deduction before taking on the task.Involve your kids and family and a yard sale can be a lot of fun. Consider using the money you make to take a family adventure!

Bonnie Joy Dewkett is the owner and operator of The Joyful Organizer. She offers professional organization services to help you organize your home and your life. Email The Joyful Organizer at bonnie@thejoyfulorganizer.com for your free home organization guide or to schedule your free organization consultation.

By Mia Wenjen, PragmaticMom


  1. Paula Hrbacek

    If you are leading a youth group, such as scouts, a yard sale is a good fund raiser. Most organizations give approval to fund raisers that involve recycling and a garage sale usually fits that definition. While doing the sale, have the youth make the business decisions, and it can be used to earn a badge about business at the same time. For more youth group activities, see my page at http://www.projectsbypaula.com.

  2. Beth Dublin

    If you don’t want to bother with a yard sale – we do a free cycle once a year and put a bunch of stuff out front with a big free sign – it goes FAST!

Leave a Comment

CommentLuv badge