Yard sales, garage sales, and flea markets are the best places to find some really cool stuff at really great prices. While rummaging through the items, you’re sure to find things you need, items you’ve wanted, or stuff that you didn’t know you wanted until you found them there. To make your shopping experience successful, here are some tricks and strategies to find the best deals.
It all starts with a plan
To score really good deals, you need to have a plan in place. Start with compiling a list of sales that you’re interested in. Then, create a shopping list of all the things that you want or need. Don’t forget to set yourself a budget. Once your lists are ready, map out the location, so you can easily drive around town without wasting your time and gas.
Work your way through
As soon as you arrive at the yard sale, scan the area to determine whether it’s worth spending your time looking for the stuff you need. Certain items such as car seats, mattresses, cribs, strollers, electronics, etc., are not worth the purchase, simply because you don’t know how long the item has been used and you may end up spending more on fixing it in the long run. Look for stuff you can resell, such as antiques, collectibles, and rare items. Off-season items are usually sold for much cheaper and you could score a great deal on them. Don’t be afraid to ask for items that you cannot find. Also, don’t shy away from digging your way through boxes to find what you’re looking for. As there are no return policies at yard sales, make sure you try the products before you buy them and inspect the items carefully before you make a purchase.
Time to negotiate
Negotiating is not as tough as you think it is. All you need is the right approach. To begin with, start by building a connection with the seller - compliment the stuff they are selling, ask questions, or just have a casual conversation about anything under the sun. Your friendly approach will ease the negotiating process. Understand that at yard sales sellers expect shoppers to haggle. If this is your first time, ask them if they are willing to lower the price. Once you’re confident, you can start making offers. One of the most effective ways to trigger a seller to start negotiating is to walk away once you’ve made an offer that they won’t accept. If you’re buying multiple items, a seller will be more than willing to lower than the price of all items. That being said, make sure you pay full price for items that are good conditions and reasonably priced.