Before anyone tells me not to have a garage sale if I hate having them – let me point out that this is exactly what I’m doing by writing this – reminding myself of – not to have garage sales in the future.
Here’s the thing – I enjoy going to garage sales – but having one of our own is a bummer that I forget about until I’m in the midst of setting it up or dealing with the cheapos and wack jobs that show up for such things. They show up early, they make offers that are insulting (Will you take a nickel for this?) and in general – I’m pretty sure that giving all this stuff to charity for a tax write off is the better option – so let’s hope I remember this the next time I consider having a yard sale or garage sale.
Yes, there are some nice people and yes, we usually end up making a fair amount of money – but the days usually start off bad with people ignoring the signs or free listings on craigslist which say 8 am, no earlybirds – and before we get the chance to set up we have people going into our garage or opening up boxes without so much as a by your leave.
Then there are the old ladies with thier nickel and dimes and even worse the younger ladies or men with their nickels or dimes. Look, I’m a picker – I look for bargains – but I never offer less than a dollar and usually pay the price people are asking. I’ll make offers on high priced things but they are reasonable and respectful offers – and I never argue with someone about what their stuff is worth. I make an offer with a smile and maybe an explanation and then they either take it or not – and usually, we’re both still smiling. The creeps that come to my sales will try to tell me that I don’t know what something is worth and when I tell them that I own an antique shop and do frequent appraissals – they sometimes go so far as to tell me I don’t know my business. This is the point I tell them that they should leave before we have a serious problem.
A guy today tried to tell me he could buy a new gas powered weed eater for $40 at Walmart. I pulled out my phone and showed him that they are actually $138.47 – a woman asked me how much for an old mill saw blade – I told her $10 and she said “I was thinking more of a dollar” – I told her “You can give me your dollar as a donation, but the blade stays here for any less than $10” at which point another lady handed me $10 – little did I know that my wife had just agreed to sell it to her for $15 – but that’s fair game.
The early birds piss me off as a picker, a seller, and as a human being. My ads and signs clearly state 8am, no early birds – and yet people still roll up at 6:30 and sometimes knock on the door to ask if they can look early…these same guys are doing the same things to other sellers and when i show up at the listed time – the good stuff is usually gone – nice guys finish last – what kind of world is this?
Estate sales are a different story – you set a time and lock the door, let the crowd build and work themselves up to a fever pitch then let them in an entry point and have a controlled exit where they can line up and pay for their purchases…no questions, no b.s. – everything is the price it is marked until the last day then it’s half price – of course, my friends that run estate sales tell horror stories about that too…
It’s the cheapohs – crabs at the bottom of the bucket trying to suck all the same shit and clawing each other to do it – next time – I’ll donate it if I can’t sell it on ebay or craigslist…