You have decided to have a garage sale. Great! But what if, at the end of your sale, you’re left with all the STUFF and none of the CASH you wanted? Here is my list of 30 top items to sell at a garage sale.
You’ve put all the work into gathering, pricing and cleaning your junk valuable treasures. You do a good job advertising and setting out signs. You sit for 2 – 3 days hoping someone will pay you for these treasures. But what if no one does? How to have a successful garage sale?
I am a professional garage sal-er. (It’s an awesome job!) I’ve gone to garage sales since I was knee high to a grasshopper. Now, I’m a picker, flipper, a garage sale expert. I also sell items at garage sales. The annual multi family sale I participate in brings in thousands of dollars every year.
Can You Make a Part Time Income Selling at Garage Sales?
The big question is: do I make enough money at garage sales as a side business ? And the answer is: No. I do not make a lot of extra money selling at garage sales. I make money selling other places like Etsy and Ebay. But people can and do make extra cash selling at garage sales, so it is possible.
Garage sales for me is to get rid of household or vintage items from my business. I want to get my money out of items instead of just donating them at the thrift store.
Since I buy household items, kids clothes and vintage items at garage sales most of the time, I do get my money out of them. Some items bring more than I pay; some items bring less, so overall, it’s a wash.
That means I get to use a household item (ie rug, blender, baskets) for free since I’m selling it for the same purchase price after I’ve used it for several years. My kids get to wear their garage sale clothes…FOR FREE since I sell them later for the same purchase price. My business does not lose money on vintage items that don’t sell online…since I sell the overstock at a garage sale later. At the end of the day, selling my extra items at a garage sale is a great way to “make” money on unwanted items.
What Is My Criteria for this List of 30 Top Items to Sell At a Garage Sale?
- Items that I’ve sold or seen sold quickly at garage sales I participate in
- Consistently sell quickly
- Sell before the garage sale even opens or always on the first day of the sale
- Difficult for me to buy because they are gone before I get to a yard sale
Things to Note About This Yard Sale List
- I live in the Midwest and am speaking from my personal experience. This is what I’ve observed and may not be the same across the country.
- I do not shop in every single category of garage sale items. There may be other top selling merchandise that I have not tried to buy or sell.
- This list is with the understanding that an item is not overpriced at a garage sale. I am talking about “garage sale prices” here and not “I saw this on Ebay for $100 so I’m going to ask the same at my garage sale” kind of price. You don’t have to give things away, but you need to price items low enough to offer a good deal to yard sale shoppers.
30 Top Items to Sell at a Garage Sale (that you should list and photograph in your social media advertisement)
I’m going to start with something that HAS made me money throughout the years…live plants. I’ve repotted and sold cactus babies, flowers from my garden that have spread, extra vegetable plants that I have, etc.
I price them much lower than local nurseries and stores.
I easily make $100 a year on excess from my yard.
I’ve sold iris, daylilies, cactus babies, succulents, houseplants I don’t want anymore, ferns I don’t want to overwinter, wild raspberry vines.
Good condition, working power tools are always hot items.
Any necessary item like a ladder at a price at least half of store price will sell quicly.
Lawn Care with a Motor
Lawn mowers, chainsaws, weed eaters, rototillers, etc sell well if they are priced well and work. Even non-working items can sell quickly if priced accordingly.
Large Gardening Tools and Gear
Garden wagons, wheelbarrows, T-posts, buckets, anything that is useful in the garden or outdoors are all some of the best items to sell.
Garage Gear and Tools
Guy stuff in general is going to sell quickly. Garage heaters, tools, air compressors, organizers, etc are sought after. Some dirt and grime is even ok on these items as long as they work well. If they don’t work, price accordingly and some fixer man will want it as a project.
Kayaks and Paddle Boards
If you have a man-powered water craft like kayaks, canoes and paddle boards that you want to sell, never fear, it will go faster than you can believe.
Name Brand Kids Coats
Even if they’re not name brand, good quality kids’ coats (that aren’t stained and worn) will sell quickly. It’s a necessary item that parent’s hate paying full price every year.
Toddler and Kid Shoes in Great Condition
Baby shoes you can find everywhere. Then the kids get to walking and wearing out their shoes. Finding older toddler and kid shoes that are in great condition is like finding gold.
Kid and Baby Clothes
An item that, if you have a ton, might not alllll sell. But you will definitely sell a bunch of it. Just make sure it’s in good condition (no holes, stains, etc).
Big Ticket Baby Gear
Car seats, baby swings, etc. The exception is strollers that often take longer to sell unless it’s a highly sought brand name. Good quality and clean condition is always the key. No one wants to clean your baby’s spit up off the gear.
American Girl Dolls and Accessories
This is pretty specific, but if you’re selling your kids’ American Girl collection, be prepared for lots of people to show up early.
Vintage Barbies and Accessories
Vintage Barbie items are not only fun for girls to still play with, they are a big collectors’ item. People of all kinds will want your 1970s – 1990s Barbie items.
Legos and Duplos
Still going with the toy theme here, but Legos (especially vintage Legos) sell quickly if priced well. On the other hand, if you price it at Ebay prices, it’s not going to sell. Garage sales prices are not Ebay prices! I can’t say this loudly enough.
Outdoor Kids’ Toys
Playhouses, slides, swing sets are all difficult to get if they’ve been photographed on the garage sale’s advertisement.
Outdoor Water Toys
Water tables, swimming pools, floaties all sell well. This, of course, does have a seasonality to it. They will sell better in spring and summer than in a fall garage sale.
Another item that kids grow out of often and “need” is bicycles. Finding those at less than store price is a perfect way for parent’s to get expensive items at lower prices..
Hobby Lobby and Target Throw Pillows
If you have throw pillows from these stores, list them with the name of the store. You know Target people…they go crazy for their home décor.
Every.Time. we list these on our garage sale ad, people end up buying from us online before the sale even starts. These are definitely good items to attract prospective buyers.
Book shelves large and small sell quickly at yard sales as long as they are in good condition. New bookcase cabinets from places like Hobby Lobby or vintage wood bookshelves are great yard sale items.
Modern Farmhouse Décor
Again, Modern Farmhouse décor from Hobby Lobby and Target is good stuff that will bring people out quickly.
Name Brand Kitchen Tools
Cuisinart tools, Kitchen aide mixer, All Clad pans, if you happen to want to sell any kitchen item with a big name brand, you’re in luck. It will sell fast!
Rustic Home Décor
Wood crates, antique doors, old chairs, chippy paint anything are great items that will all sell quickly. If you have a lot of Rustic and Primitive items, you will have a successful sale.
Vintage Library Card Catalogs
I say this because it’s something I’m always looking for and have a hard time finding. If you’re crazy enough to be getting rid of a vintage library card catalog (big or small), people will show up crazy early to snag it. These items you can also put higher prices on.
This is pretty specific, but I collect this. My excess pieces I sell at a garage sale, and they always go first thing. Savvy shoppers love that green jadeite!
Vintage Rattan Furniture
As I type this, I’m thinking of the vintage rattan settee I missed out on by mere seconds just last week. This is a Boho and Mid Century vintage style score that a lot of people are desperate for. Make sure to display items like this on your online ad and easily visible from the street.
Good condition and pretty outdoor furniture is always a big draw. Lounge chairs, table and chair sets, vintage wicker and similar items are large items that will sell.
I add this one because it will draw lots people but if you have a lot they may not all sell. I’ve always sold the few I have. Record collectors love picking through cardboard boxes full of records.
Small Mid Century Furniture
Mid Century décor is definitely in high demand right now, and people will flock to buy it. End tables, coffee tables, side chairs will all gain early interest.
Authentic Vintage Farmhouse Décor
There are people who love Hobby Lobby type of Farmhouse décor and people who love the authentic, time-worn Farmhouse. Galvanized buckets, old hand painted signs, black and white enamel pans (the list could go on and on) will make potential buyers go crazy to get to your sale!
There is my list of 30 top items to sell at a garage sale. It is by no means comprehensive. And this doesn’t mean that nothing else will sell. These are just items I’ve found to be popular items that sell within the first day and often within the first few hours. I hope this helps you have a successful yard sale!
Read more of my best garage sale tips below.
Comment below and tell me what best selling item at your garage sale has been!
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