7 Lucky Tips to Garage Sale Shopping Success

Posted in: I'm Moving, Neighborhood Advice

While some annually mark their calendars for the ceremonial opening day of their beloved baseball team, I honor the opening day of a different season with just as much excitement and tradition as those die-hard baseball fans.

No, not the start of the newest season of the NFL, and not even the first puck drop of the NHL, but more importantly, the very first stop of my favorite season of the year – – Garage Sale Season! When the weather turns warmer and people start thawing from the long & lonely winter, it’s time to roll up your sleeves, map out your route, and head out to hit up some local garage sales for the discounted trash that may just be your new treasure.

And yes… just like those crazy baseball fans, I am proud to say that I am the #1 fan of team garage sales and I am honored that I have the opportunity to share some of my tips to find treasures with a backyard price tag.

1. Look for signs

Driving around and looking for neon posters on the corner is the best way to find out about the garage sales in your area. As much as I wish I could give you a local database that tracks all the garage sales… sometimes the old-fashioned way of just driving around and seeing what you see is your best bet. For those that are a little less adventurous and more apt to plan in advance, addresses that are hosting garage sales are often listed in the local paper a few days before the weekend.

2. Don’t be afraid to take a DETOUR

You never know what you may find! Turning around and taking an impromptu detour by following the signs to the detour may lead to even more than you first imagined. I’ve found new neighborhoods I never knew existed, ones that I hope to live in one day, dream houses I never knew were for sale, and even open houses that offer a great chance to get the scoop on the local real estate! #winwin

3. Clear your Schedule

Believe it or not, a morning dash to a garage sale in your neighborhood can quickly turn into an entire afternoon of garage sale shopping. These spur of the moment visits seem to grow into, “just on more garage sale” over & over again (many times against your better half’s wishes). So don’t fight it! Clear your schedule and leisurely explore the entire town’s garage sale status.

4. Bring CASH

Cash is KING! Although it’s 2014 and most people are guilty of having a credit, debit, and cell phone on them at all times, garage sales are the exception to the rule. I know that credit or debit cards can do some serious damage most of the time, but cash is necessary if you plan on purchasing anything.

5. Ask about an item that interests you

Strike up conversation! If you see an item that you’re loving, ask the homeowner about it. Does it work? How often did you use this? Even how much is it? Often times, big ticket items are not always priced clearly and showing interest (especially toward the end of the weekend) will motivate the homeowner to slash the original price way down!

6. Think outside of the box

The owner has an old, mini wrought iron table for sale. It’s an undesirable color, it’s full of dust, and it’s super-duper sturdy and the perfect size for that corner on your patio. Think outside of the box! Just because she used it inside for a lamp, doesn’t mean you can’t spray paint it, add a potted plant on top of it and stick it on your patio for some entertaining! Think outside of the box and I promise you that you will find far more treasures for all over your home!

7. Enlist some friends & enjoy the ride!

Shopping garage sales is always more fun with friends! Get a group together, grab some coffee and hit the road… together! Why not catch up on the latest gossip, escape the kids, and enjoy the adventure of finding new treasures for your home on the cheap with some of your favorite people?

Garage sales and the process of finding them is all about the adventure. Enjoy it!! The birds are chirping, the morning sun is beaming and it is going to be a GREAT day in the neighborhood. =)

Tune in next week to read…

Garage Sale vs. Estate Sale


Until then, we want to know – – What is your favorite Garage Sale SCORE?! Tag @hireahelper and @diyplaybook to share your finds!!


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