Top Tips for Hosting a Garage Sale


Top Tips for Hosting a Garage Sale | Rochester MN Moms Blog

It is often said there are two seasons in Minnesota: Winter and Road Construction. I would add another to the mix – Garage Sale Season!  Garage Sale, Yard Sale, Rummage Sale – whatever you prefer to call it, the time of year when people clean out their closets and their garages is upon us!

The other day I looked around my house and realized we are busting at the seams. Totes of “stuff” fill every available inch of our spare room and garage.  I realized it was time for a purge and time to start planning a garage sale of my very own.  While I’m not a novice at shopping garage sales, this is the first time I will be attempting to host a sale of my own.  I decided to turn to the experts to get the low-down on top tips for hosting a garage sale!  Here’s a countdown of the best tips.

10. Plan your sale date to coincide with a city-wide event, or partner up with your neighbors. Several sales in the same neighborhood will drive more traffic to your sale.

9. If your address includes a rural route number, find a friend in town to host the sale with. People don’t drive to the country for garage sales.

8. Offer cookies, coffee, bottled water, etc – this makes a great job for kids who want to help out at the sale.

7. Have a “free” box with items that are stained, chipped, cracked, missing a piece, etc. Some people will stop just for that, and children love it!

6. Attach items that go together (think 2 piece pajamas, 2 piece outfits, etc) with a safety pin or invest in a price tag fastener gun (you can find them as low as $10 online). This will make life easier for you and your customers.

5. Display items well – hang as many items as you can, organize clothing on tables by size, season, etc. If the weather is nice, pull as many tables and items out into the yard or driveway as possible. Put high demand items (strollers, large toys, bikes, etc) close to the road to attract people just driving by.  Make your sale visible.

4. Be prepared to negotiate with shoppers and know what your bottom dollar is on large items.

3. Keep prices cheap. Price items in $.25 increments, and don’t price anything lower than $.25. This way you won’t have to deal with nickels/dimes/pennies.

2. Offer a “Fill the bag for $X” type of deal on the last day, or offer everything for ½ price on the last day of the sale.

And here is the number one tip for hosting a garage sale…


1. Advertise your sale well in local papers, online, and with attractive, well-marked signage.


Skip on hosting a garage sale and donate your items to a local charity or thrift shop!

Would you add anything to this list?

Thank you to all of my friends and family for your insight and advice shared in this post!

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Agriculture has been intertwined in Mamie Luhmann’s life since birth, as she was raised on a dairy farm, and was a member of both the 4-H and FFA Programs. She went to college at UWRF and earned a degree in Agricultural Education. After a semester as a high school agriculture teacher, she took a job with the UMN Extension as a 4-H Program Coordinator, and completed a Masters Degree. She met her husband Paul at the County Fair. Together they moved on to a small farm and started raising chickens, sheep, and their 2 daughters, Clara (5) and Hazel (2). Mamie is an “agvocate” and loves to teach others about agriculture and farming. Her daily adventures include collecting dozens of eggs, cleaning straw out of her washing machine, using her hair dryer to warm baby lambs, and raising 2 little girls to love livestock and farming as much as she does. When she isn’t getting her hands dirty on the farm, she’s busy with her career as a Training and Development Liaison at the Mayo Clinic. Mamie contributes to the AgStar Women in Ag Blog and also pens her own blog at Blessings Abound.