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The $3000 Garage Sale: A Quick Overview For Aspiring Garagepreneurs
By Vincent Pagliani

Call it whatever you like... Garage Sale, Yard Sale, Estate Sale, Tent Sale, Moving Sale, Rummage Sale. Whatever you call it and wherever you operate it, the Garage Sale seems to be the one retail channel that continues to thrive in every economic climate. Garage sales never goes out of style. And people love 'em.

Think you can't make serious money on a garage sale? Think again!

The first thing to understand is that a profitable garage sale -- like any other profitable business -- is not just dumb luck. Successful garagepreneurs know how to offer the right products at the right price at the right time...and cleverly promote each garage sale event.

There's more to a successful garage sale than planting a Garage Sale! sign in your front yard and piling up a bunch of junk on a couple of card tables. Garagepreneurship is estimated to be a $2 billion per year industry -- that's right, industry. Some enterprising garagepreneurs will make serious money this year.

The average profit for a weekend garage sale is $500 - $700. Does that sound good? Or do you aspire to make a few thousand dollars for a weekend's work?
Earning $1000 for a weekend's work is easier than it may seem. Earning $3000 is not only possible, it's realistic...if you choose well, price it right, present it well, promote it cleverly, and offer your buyers a pleasant shopping experience.


First things first...

Set a revenue goal will help you choose merchandise and devise a realistic expenditures budget. Which breed of garagepreneur do you aspire to be? The Purger? The Quick Cash Weekender? Or the Stealth Wealth Accumulator?

THE PURGER. Garagepreneurs whose primary garage sale objective is to purge their junky closets. Money is a distant secondary goal.

THE QUICK CASH WEEKENDER. The garagepreneur who wants to raise a few hundred dollars for a couple of days' work. (Junk-purging is just a bonus.)

THE STEALTH WEALTH ACCUMULATOR. This is the garagepreneur who views each garage sale as a small victory: accumulate enough victories and you build a real business. The Stealth Wealther often rakes in several thousand dollars per sale...then does it again in a few months, or even a few weeks.

The Stealth Wealther is already planning the next one before the first one ends. Yes, the Stealth Wealther carefully plots each venture, markets aggressively, and knows how to cultivate -- and capitalize -- on resources.

Chances are, you're not a Purger, or you probably wouldn't be reading this article.


Check with your city clerk and local codes enforcement department to determine if there are ordinances and regulations on operating garage sales. Some municipalities require permits, and may regulate the number of garage sales you can have, as well as the number of consecutive days the sale can run. There are almost always signage ordinances you should know about; for example, ordinances forbidding you to post flyers on utility poles and signs in government right-of-ways.

Spy on local garage sales, ideally over the course of several weekends. Study your competition's advertising and promotional tactics, especially the successful competition.


Think like a retailer. Full tables and packed racks attract more interest and keep buyers interested longer, increasing the odds that you'll sell almost everybody something.


A thought about Garage Sale Zen: A garage sale is a treasure hunt for shoppers. You must have some treasures. The serial garage sale shopper loves the thrill of discovering an unexpected treasure, at an affordable price.

As you're gathering merchandise, always always Think Profit. Focus on profit, every step of the way.

The more inventory you have, the more successful your sale is likely to be. Massive inventory generates excitement and hedges your bet that you'll have something for everyone.


Scout high-quality wholesale/discount suppliers & dropshippers -- many offer discounts up to 85% off retail. Get catalogs. Analyze profit margins. (Free Quality Merchandise Suppliers list available in author's resource box.)


The fundamental Zen of Garage Sale Pricing is simple: People are shopping your sale because they expect to find bargains. As you construct a pricing theory, never lose sight of the fact that this is a garage sale, not a Sotheby's auction. That doesn't meant you can't get top dollar for unique, sought-after items -- you can. But you must learn how to choose wisely, so as not to erode your profit.


Yes, the garage sale is a commercial enterprise, a shopping experience. But for most garage sales shoppers, your sale is also recreation and a social event, all rolled into one.

Whether we like to admit it or not, we're all susceptible to packaging. A compelling package draws shoppers to your sale, and encourages them to linger once they arrive. Invent ways to package your sale, as well as your items. Tailor your efforts and the ambiance of your event to accomplish your specific revenue goals.

You've probably heard of the Five Ps? When you're marketing goods to the public -- whether you're garagepreneur or a multinational corporation -- the Five Ps apply. (Technically, there are more than five, but marketers tend to have their favorite five.)

Product. Pricing. Promotion. Positioning. Publicity. Packaging. Pass-Along Permission.

Whether you're a Purger, Quick Cash Weekender or a Stealth Wealther, this quick overview should get you started. If you're a serious garagepreneur with serious revenue goals, you may need the complete $3000 Garage Sale Blueprint, which is available in Secrets of A Successful Garagepreneur: A Step-By-Step Guide to Making Serious Money on Garage Sales.

Good luck with that garage sale!

About the Author:

Vincent Pagliani is editor of Web Entrepreneur Advisory, which publishes SECRETS OF A SUCCESSFUL GARAGEPRENEUR: A Step-By-Step Guide to Making Serious Money on Garage Sales. Download our free suppliers list & TOC @


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