How to Profitably Give Unwanted Stuff a New Life
Each American discards an average of 4.4 pounds of personal garbage a day according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Half of what we toss can be recycled. A yard sale can both clear out the clutter and keep reusable items in circulation.
In assembling merchandise from all around the house, make it a family affair, with everyone contributing things to consider together. Before putting any item in the “keep” pile, ask: How long have I lived with this? How often did I need it? How often will I use it now and in the future?
Check with neighbors and friends to see if they want to join in a multifamily sale likely to draw more potential buyers.
Getting the word out is essential. Place a yard sale listing in a local newspaper, either for free or a small fee. Free online posting is available at Craigslist.org and GarageSaleHunter.com. Also, post flyers (on recycled paper) seven to 10 days before the sale along busy streets in the community.
On the event day, make sure that large, bright signs in the neighborhood lead buyers to the sale. Reuse cardboard from old boxes to save money and recycle signs and flyers afterwards. Cindy Skrzynecki, of Minneapolis, who has monitored the phenomenon, notes, “Shoppers tend to equate the size of a sign with the size of a sale, so a few large, well-placed signs may draw more people to you than several smaller signs.”
Skrzynecki says that holiday weekends or weekends that coincide with popular local events are excellent because, “You’ll provide a fun activity for people that stay in town.”