Monday, May 28, 2007

Our Much-Needed Yard Sale

Saturday, May 26th 2007

Due to our impending move and lack of space in our new apartment, we decided that we should have a yard sale. The one weekend that worked out best turned out to be Memorial Day weekend, so that did not bode well for us since most folk would probably be out of town or at the beach during the day, but we tried our best under the circumstances.

Most of the goods were items that we just no longer needed or wanted or their novelty ran out a long time ago as well as several size 6 and 6.5 pairs of shoes, clothing and some small furniture. We were fortunate to have really great landlords that allowed us to use the front yard area which was enclosed by a fence and had a black top surface, making the setup pretty easy. They even threw in a few items of their own to sell, which was kind of cool in the beginning, but it turned out that they had a different approach from us and may have scared people away from looking closer at everything.

The morning started off rather well, with morning passerby's stopping in and buying several items. But as lunch time rolled around, it got really hot with the sun overhead, and there were fewer people passing by. We had posted some flyers in the vicinity, but it wasn't until later in the day that I realized the major intersections with lots of foot traffic weren't covered. So Brian and I took turns in posting more.

Yay! Customers!

Definitely had to put on the day continued on and we still had lots of knick knacks, the prices continued to fall to hopefully encourage more buyers, but some of this stuff were really quite hard to sell. We shifted our price signs to the left (see pic above), making room for new low prices, and had a free box in which we were constantly adding more items.

It's hard work sitting around watching your stuff bake in the sun.

So at the end of the day, still having lots of stuff, we decided to continue our sale for another day, except our new tagline was "Everything for $1". We did pretty well for the first day, making around $270 (?)

Our new posters for Sunday

Sunday, May 27th 2007

We woke up late, having too good a time at the yard-themed dinner the night before.

At around 9:40am, even before we had everything set up, a woman and a man came in, looked around, and bought 21 items. That's $21 even before we officially opened! Not bad. The day continued on quite like the day before, but we did have some interesting customers - one woman kept picking up items and setting them aside and then debating about whether to buy each of them, then putting them back. She actually got into a small grabbing fight with a boy who was maybe 12 years old over a gyroscope she had put back. The boy ended up buying it.

We ended up making over $400 in those two days - not too bad considering that most of the stuff were knick knacks. Aside from clothes, shoes and some other items, we ended up leaving some items out for people to take for free at the end of the day. The clothes and shoes were donated at Rosie's Place and Boomerangs. We actually had visitors again on Monday - there were these 2 Brazilian women who came by both days and bought items both times, but they were quite the hagglers. They came back for an item they were interested in on Sunday, but it was gone by Monday.

It was quite an interesting and learning experience.

The one approach we recommend when having a yard sale is that you must be okay with selling your items at a very low price, knowing that there will be buyers who will want to haggle the price down even further. In the end, the main goal is to get rid of everything. You're essentially having the sale, because you don't want the items any more. You can always take photos of the items to have some record of them. That certainly takes up a lot less room than actually having the item itself, especially when you have as much as we had.

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