Every belonging you move adds to the weight of your shipment – and ultimately the cost. That’s a good reason to consider getting rid of some items you no longer need, but hate to throw away.
Preparing for a move presents an excellent opportunity to sort through some of the excess items you’ve collected over time. You might raise some quick cash, and will definitely save in moving expenses when you trim excess weight.
What to sell
Go through your house with a notebook, listing everything you want to sell. Here are some of the types of items that are popular merchandise:
- Appliances, furniture, lamps, mirrors, linens and bedding
- Audio, video and photography equipment; also compact discs, phonograph records and tapes
- Baby equipment and supplies; also games, toys and bicycles
- Camping equipment, and lawn and patio equipment/furniture
- China, glassware, flatware and kitchen utensils and gadgets
- Clothes, especially for babies and toddlers
- Sports and exercise equipment
Where to Sell
One of the keys to a profitable garage sale is advertising. There are many sites on the Internet that offer free listings for garage sales, as well as sample signs you can use. You can also advertise in your local newspaper. Here are some tips for holding a successful garage sale:
- Allow at least three weeks for preparations.
- Check with local authorities for restrictions applying to garage sales. You might need a special permit, or be required to pay a fee or collect sales taxes. Signs advertising the sale might be limited or prohibited.
- Consider a joint sale with one or more neighbors so you can share the work, fun and profits. The greater the assortment of items you have to offer, the more potential customers you’ll attract and the more successful the sale will be.
- If the sale will be on your property, let your insurance agent know, and make certain your homeowner’s policy will cover any liability for injuries.
- Start saving shopping bags and cardboard cartons.
- Remember that your items should be reasonably priced, and always be prepared to bargain with your customers.
- Have plenty of change on hand.
For a nominal fee, local flea markets are a great means for selling secondhand items. Because most markets are advertised, professional secondhand bargain hunters usually attend. Again, have shopping bags and cardboard cartons on hand for your customers’ convenience and don’t forget to have plenty of change on hand!
Online auctions and classifieds
Have something that you think would be of great value to someone else? A great way to earn extra money is by selling your unwanted goods online. When you use online auctions and classified sites, you are given the opportunity to showcase your items for sale to the world, not just your own neighborhood.
- Visit the individual auction or classified site for specific details on payments and requirements.
- Take extra time to properly describe your item and include a good quality photo to increase your chances of selling.
- Be sure to play up any offbeat merchandise that might intrigue and attract shoppers.
- Most online sites allow you to specify that the purchaser must pick up the items themselves or pay for the cost of shipping – saving you even more time and money!
Secondhand stores and charity stores
Secondhand and consignment stores may offer higher prices for some items than you’ll earn at garage sales or online auctions. Check local listings for stores and call ahead to see if they’re interested in what you have to sell.
Consider donating any leftover items to charitable organizations. They generally give a receipt for donations so the value can be deducted on your income tax return if you itemize expenses. Or, contribute leftovers to church rummage sales, schools or community centers. Make a quick phone call first to make sure they can accept the items you have left.