Garage Sale Tactics

“Garage Sale of Biblical Proportions” was the sign our neighbors (Jeff & Marie) erected to announce their garage sale last weekend. The wife and I figured this was a real can’t miss event, so we ambled over to see what goodies they had that we couldn’t live without. Fortunately, there was no treasure in their trash so we went home empty handed.

While looking over their knick-knack table (“You can have anything on the table for only 10¢ each”), and fiddling with a broken camera tripod (“Oh, I suppose I could let you have it for only five dollars”), Jeff came up to me and whispered, “Ron, do you know anyone who can use a waterbed?”

“I didn’t know people were still sleeping on them,” I mused.

“Well I have one in my basement and Marie is pretty upset that I’ve kept it. I could let it go for only fifty bucks.”

I looked at him with a question mark on my face, “Gosh, Ron,” he whined, “I paid $650 for it a few years ago.” He was still whispering.

I whispered back, “Jeff, why are you whispering?”

He glanced over his shoulder to see if his wife was listening and he said, “Marie wants the darn thing out of the basement because it was the bed my first wife and I slept in for three years. She thinks I keep it to…”

“Oh, I see.” I interrupted with understanding. “No, Jeff, I don’t need a water bed, but thanks anyway.”

Like Jeff and Marie, you may be thinking of having a garage sale before summer is over. If you are, then here are some tactics that will help make your sale more successful:

First of all, remember that some bargains aren’t bargains no matter how cheap they are. It doesn’t matter that you paid $1300 for your Macintosh 512K computer some time in the last century it’s not worth $89. Heck, it’s not worth 89 cents. And don’t try the “it’s an antique” sales pitch. It is not an antique – it’s obsolete. The same goes for those VCR tapes, your old bowling ball, and the 2010 calendar from Jamaica (But it has such pretty pictures on it!).

Another thing – separate your stuff into men’s, women’s, and children’s stuff. I don’t like to look through a box of miscellaneous hardware and have to fight off a bunch of dusty Avon bottles.

Also, while I’m poking around your stuff, don’t stare at me like you recognize me from America’s Most Wanted. I’m not the guy. I’m just someone with too little money and too much time.

Jeff called a few minutes ago “You know that water bed I was telling you about? I couldn’t sell the stupid thing, so I cut it up and made shelves out of it. Marie is a lot happier and now we have a place to put all the junk we didn’t sell.”

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