Garage Sale Hunting Guide – How to Be an Expert Yard Sale Hunter


A few months ago I found a garage sale near my home advertised through Craigslist. The sale was comprised of a few older families that lived in a condominium complex. Since it was a Friday and they were still putting things out I knew I was in a good position to make some good finds.

Unfortunately, within a few minutes of looking around I had decided it was a bust- nothing there that I was interested in- and I decided to leave. Just as I was leaving the sale a couple dusty bottles caught my attention in a dark corner of the garage. I went over to the shelf in the garage and examined a small paper sign that said “Alcohol $2.00″.

My hand reached out for the familiar bottle and firmly grasped it, I studied the label, and quickly fished out 2 $1.00 bills from my wallet, wondering if this was a joke or what. Having worked at a 5 star French restaurant in my college years I knew what I had in my hands was authentic, but I still couldn’t understand why these people were practically giving it away.

I quickly found the woman and quickly gave her the 2 dollars and held up the bottle. She nodded and put the money away routinely and turned to other garage sellers who were making offers on other items. I excitedly raced home wanting to look up what the treasure I had just bought was worth.

It turned out that the bottle I bought was going for up to $399.00 online. While I could sell the bottle of Dom and make a nice profit on my $2.00 investment, I have decided to put it in a safe cool place and keep it for a special occasion.

Garage Sale Hunting Tips

o Use print and online resources during the week to find out where the sales are and what time they start.

o Get there early as the good stuff goes fast.

o Don’t be afraid to bargain-these people are selling their stuff because they want it gone.

o Drive around the main roads of large planned communities and keep your eye out for Garage Sale signs- many people will not advertise, only put out signs the day of the sale.

o Check your community bulletin boards and other community groups- often times churches, schools, and other organizations will have large annual multi-family sales.

o When buying multiple items-offer the seller one price for all. Ex. “Would you take$5.00 for these?” Keep in mind that when the garage sale is over and their driveway is full of stuff that didn’t sell- a lot of it will be donated anyway. For some garage “sale-rs” the end of the sale is the best since many sellers are practically giving away items that nobody else wanted, but you would for sure miss the $2.00 bottles of Dom Perignon.

o Garage sales are usually best on Saturday mornings, but some start on Friday afternoons and go until Sunday afternoon.