If you're preparing for a move, you can find yourself with accumulated clutter that you don't want to bring to your new home. Garage sales can be a great way to downsize some items and help you earn a little extra cash before you move.
But before you start setting up tables in the yard, there are a few things you should do to prepare. Here are some do's & don'ts to help you maximize your garage sale potential.

DO Contact your HOA

Some HOAs & municipalities require you to obtain permission to hold a garage sale or post signs promoting one. Make sure you know the rules of your area before you start making your plans.

DON'T Wait until the last minute.

Depending on how long you've lived in your home and how much stuff you want to sell, planning a garage sale can take a lot of time and energy. And that's on top of the effort of putting your home on the market!

DO Schedule the sale.

Sales on Saturdays and Sundays will generate the most traffic, especially if the weather cooperates. Start the sale early — 8 or 9 a.m. is best — and be ready for early birds.

DON'T Forget to advertise. 

Place an ad in the newspaper, free classified papers, and websites, including the date(s), time, and address of the garage sale. Add information about what will be available, such as kids' clothes, furniture, or special equipment. On the day of the sale, use balloons and signs with prominent arrows to grab attention.

DO Price your goods.

Clearly mark rounded prices (50 cents, 3 for $1, or $5, for example) with easily removable stickers.

DON'T Forget to stock up on supplies.

Before the sale begins you'll need stickers for pricing, signs to direct people to the sale, and a plan on how to display items. 

On the day of the sale, having a stock of old shopping bags that can be reused will encourage people to buy more items. Newspapers are handy for wrapping fragile goods.

DO Display items nicely.

Organize items by category and don't make customers dig through boxes to find items they are looking for.

DON'T Expect people to buy junk. 

If it's truly garbage, throw it away or place it in a freebie bin. Don't try to sell broken appliances, and have an electrical outlet nearby in case a customer wants to try plugging something in.

DO Manage your money.

Obtain ample change for your cashbox, and have a calculator on hand. Assign one person to man the "register," keeping a tally of what was purchased and for how much.

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