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Garage sale 101

Declutter, make money, and meet the neighbours. Here’s how to ensure a successful garage sale. Watch our UsedOttawa.com Community Coordinator, Christa, discuss how to host a garage sale on CTV Morning Live, here.

Two weeks leading up to the sale

  • Reach out to your neighbours. Maybe they have items to sell. A multi-family sale will garner even more attention
  • Start getting your items ready. Clean items will sell for more
  • Gather your essential items:
    • Price labels and tape
    • Markers
    • Signs for the street
    • Coins to make change
    • Cash box or aprons for the cashiers to handle money
  • Put an ad on your local Used.ca site. There is a category specifically for local garage sales. Be sure to include:
    • Your location (by filling out the postal code box while creating the ad); we often share garage sale maps on Fridays!
    • Opening and closing times. Are early birds welcome?

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  • A list of some of the items being sold, these will then appear when people search our sites and make them aware of your sale (when I was searching for a new tent last weekend, I came across this ad directing me to this garage sale)

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  • Share your garage sale with your friends via social media. Use the link to your ad on Used.ca or the share function within the ad. Be sure to include your area’s most popular hashtag if there is one (e.g. #yyj #ottawa).

 Pricing and displaying items

  • Check your local Used.ca site for comparable items and price accordingly
  • The rule of thumb is 25% less than the price of new
  • Consider pricing in bulk, four shirts for $5, bag small toys into ziplock bags, etc.
  • Post the most interesting or popular items nearest to passing foot and vehicle traffic to draw attention to your sale
  • Use a portable clothing rail to make clothing more desirable
  • Lay down a tarp if items are going on the ground
  • Group items together; toys on one table, holiday items on another
  • Have lots of bags and boxes on hand to encourage people to buy more
  • Consider a half-price sale in the last hour of the sale
  • Have a box of FREE items to attract attention and purge

After the sale

  • Anything that didn’t sell can be donated or sold on Used.ca
    • Use the free section of Used.ca
    • Do a bulk ad and offer one price
    • Donate to charity
  • Take your signs down and recycle

And the most important task of all – HAVE FUN!

Useful links

Find our weekly garage sales maps on UsedVictoria.com here.