How to Be the Best Garage Sale Buyer Ever!

Brace yourselves: garage sale season is coming! Last year we wrote a post on how to host your best garage sale ever, but for those of you obsessed with seeking out that perfect thrifty find, we thought we’d change it up by bringing you…

garage sale buyer

Stay Protected and Hydrated

It’s no fun to come home for a day of garage saling with a nasty sunburn and/or heatstroke. If you’re sensitive to the sun, make sure to wear sunscreen and don’t forget to reapply every two hours. Wear a hat or sunglasses to keep the sun out of your eyes, and keep a cooler with beverages in your car.

Be Comfortable

Dress in layers so that you can survive a chilly morning combined with a blazing hot afternoon. Wear comfortable shoes; skip the flip-flops if you want to avoid wet feet on dewy grass.

Be Prepared

Bringing along some (or all) of these items can make the day a lot easier:

  • Change: Most garage sales will have change on hand, but if you get there later in the day, it’s better to come prepared with your own change.
  • GPS/map: Getting lost…ain’t nobody got time for that.
  • An empty shopping bag: Instead of struggling to carry all those knick-knacks, bring along a shopping bag. Your arms will thank you.
  • Tape measure: Need to know if a piece of furniture will fit? Carry a tape measure with you for good measure.
  • Swiss Army knife: In case you need to cut a length of rope in order to tie something to your vehicle.
  • Screwdriver: For checking battery compartments.
  • A supply of batteries in various sizes: For checking to make sure battery-operated items actually work.
Know the Area

If you’re looking for baby clothes, you won’t have much luck in an area predominantly occupied by retirees. Conversely, if you’re on the hunt for antiques, searching in an area with lots of young families likely won’t yield anything. Higher end neighbourhoods will have nice stuff, but the price tag will also be higher.

Clothes Shopping? Bring References

Don’t depend on clothing sizes to let you know whether it’ll fit; it’s likely been washed multiple times and possibly shrunk. If you’re looking for kids’ clothes, bring along a pair of pants and shirt as a reference to compare.

Think On It

If you see something you’re not sure about, carry it with you while you browse – that way, it won’t get snatched up while you’re deciding. If the seller is asking a price you’re not willing to pay, leave your name and phone number and ask them to call you at the end of the day if it hasn’t sold. At that point, you might be able to wrangle a good deal!


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