In this part we will discuss goals of the tag sale. Is the goal to make money or to simply get rid of stuff? Some people don’t care about the money they would make by having a tag sale. We have already said it’s a lot of work, and it is. Some people just don’t want to be bothered. Heck, they can take all the stuff down to the local non-profit and take the tax write off. But even that is work. And, if your the type of person who really doesn’t need to money, well the tax write off isn’t going to mean much to you anyway. You’d be doing that as more of a favor to the charity and that’s fine. Many flea marketers, and treasure hunters alike hit those store too for the buys. Maybe your stuff is “too good” for a tag sale or a donation. That’s possible too. We will discuss that aspect later when we talk about pricing. If your goal is to get rid of things and make a little cash then, a tag sale – or even an estate sale would be beneficial to you. The main rule you must remember however if you want to get rid of stuff and make money too, is to build a profit into the sale for the buyer. In other words, the item has to be priced fair and reasonable enough that someone will actually reach into their pocket and pay you the cash. What type of buyers are out there? Well, the answer is simple…all types! Tagging or yard sailing, mouse-ing, or hunting for rusty gold has become a national past time in the United States. Everyone it seems is out there looking for things they like, things they collect, things they need, things they can use, thing they can resell, heck things they don’t even need! They just can’t pass up a bargain. What kinds of things sell? Almost anything. George Carlin once said if you hammer two pieces of wood together some one will buy it. What types of things do you have to sell? And, what type of things to sell that will actually make money? We will now answer that last question by categorizing stuff into three categories; antique, collectible and modern. An item generally has to be at least 100 years old to be considered an antique. So, let’s do the math. You’ve been in your house for 50 years. When you moved in you brought with you your parents dining room set. The set has been in your house for 50 years plus your parents had it for at least 50 years (you remember having dinner on that table when you were little). Your mothers mother gave that to her. Chance are that set is antique. Collectibles are things that are less than 100 years old. That metal Coca-Cola carry along cooler you have down in the basement was bought in the 1950’s. You remember bringing that to the beach. In fact, you remember when your mom got it – she saved and turned in her S&H green stamps. Your sons Tonka trucks he had when he was a child. He is now 47 and they are collectible. Then, there are modern items or things that were made with in the last 30 years. Within these 3 categories of antique, collectible and modern are many sub categories or areas of interest to buyers. You must look through your house, attic or basement and get a feel for the types of things you have and want to part with. Once you do that then you will need to start getting organized. You are now at a critical junction. Just exactly how much stuff is there? We have been in houses where literally we needed to clear a space in front of your next step to move forward. Loaded. In Part 3, we will share some of the tools and methods we use to help people get organized so that they can have an orderly, effective sale and make the most back for there efforts. There are several ways to do this but there are also mistakes that can be made so check back soon!
In Part 1, we will broadly discuss reasons that motivate us to think about having a tag sale. If you’ve ever had a tag or a yard sale, you know it’s a lot of work. You have all the set up, then taking everything down and putting things away when the day is done. You may be in a situation where your thinking about moving or downsizing. The kids are out on their own and that 3-4 bedroom house is not really needed any longer. You’d like to put the house on the market and move to someplace smaller but there is 40 years of your stuff in there! You’d be surprised what people save. One gentleman told us, “we have brand new still in the box toys up in the attic”. He went on the explain that every Christmas, they would buy two of the same toy – one the each of their boys. But sometimes, the boys just played with one and never opened the other so it got put away and forgotten about. Or perhaps dear old Aunt Bette passed away and you have the task of cleaning and selling her house. Aunt Betty was an avid flea marketer, never keep any records of what she bought, simply bought what she liked and the house was loaded with old antique “Brimfield” type things. No matter what the situation is, the contents can be turned into cash – but as mentioned, there is a lot of work involved. Where do you start? How do you even get organized? When is the best time of the year to have one? What time do you start and what to do with those pesky early birds!?! One lady’s house we recently dealt with was so full every time she got motivated to start organizing, she broke down and cried. She never, ever reached the point of actually doing anything! It was too emotional for her. Turns out the emotions were stemming from a fashion boutique she was forced to close. She wanted to part with things – but couldn’t bring herself to the point of actually getting rid of anything. Lets face it, if you decide to have a tag sale it should be worth your while. In the next part we will discuss goals for having a tag sale. Is the goal to make money, move or just downsize? Perhaps it’s a combination of all those things.
Until next time!
It’s late September and I really should be back at school…oh Maggie I wish I, HOLD ON wait a minute – got carried away LOL! Yes, it is late September here in New England and the season for tagging and estate sales is winding down. Check back soon for my blog for tips on having a successful tag sale. You wont want to miss this do’s and don’ts – all from a buyer’s perspective!