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Monday, September 20, 2010

Too Little, Too Much

Last week two small towns nearby had their city-wide garage sales. I was sorely disappointed with the selection and prices. Why, oh why, do people price old worn out clothing (not even good brand names!) for $1 or more? It's the type of stuff that you would expect to see in a free box, and wouldn't even consider taking.

The odd thing is that it is the richer neighborhoods that I find this happening the most often. You'd expect someone who could afford a $200,000+ house to not be dressing their children in Garanimals from the 90's. You certainly wouldn't expect them to price that clothing at $2!

Then I run into a garage sale with really nice stuff...that is terribly overpriced! A Bumbo seat for $20, or sweatshirts for $10. It is nice stuff, and I know that things cost a lot when new, but these types of prices are not realistic for a garage sale. Even at consignment shops you can't expect that type of return on your investment.

What about the sale that had a candle set from the dollar store priced at $3? Or an ugly little mirror with a crack in it priced at $8 (and no, it was not an antique!).

I have to really dig through a lot of garage sales to come up with a few good things. Sometimes it doesn't seem worth it, after gas money and all the running around. The thrill of the hunt and the really good sales keep me coming back for more though.

In each town wide sale there tends to be a couple places that has nice things and decent prices. I head to these places first. Out of the two city-wide sales this past week I only bought one bag of things, from one sale. I was able to get this whole bag of clothing for the boys for $10.75. It was 12 pieces of clothing.

Do you live in an area where there is a lot of overpriced junk? Maybe this is typical of most sales? What was your best garage sale find ever?


  1. I find that the areas with the houses priced around $300,000 are the most overpriced. But you also need to think that approximately half of those people can't afford their mortgage payments- since they purchased too much house for their income. They are probably looking to pay down debt or something. I rarely shop those sales. I try to stay in the $100,000-$200,000 area houses. These people know how to shop well and sell well. Also, I'm not above telling people that they are too high in their prices. Sometimes they negotiate, and other times they pack all their stuff away at the end of the day. :)

  2. My best bargain ever was when my son was small. I came across a goose down/feather parka with a streak of grease across the front and no price tag. I was sure she hadn't tried to remove the grease so I asked "How much?". .she hesitated and then said "$5". ."Sold" I said. I used LesToil rubbed into the grease with an old toothbrush and tossed it into the laundry. Came out clean!!! My son wore that parka two winters and then we donated it to charity.

  3. I have found that this season most of the sales I have been to have been way over priced! I am sure it's got something to do with the economy! I know when we had our yard sale in June we had really low prices and when we have ours next weekend it will be like that again. However, my best find was just this past Sat. We went to a half price church sale and I got 2 paper bags FULL of clothes for my 8 year old for $5.00 and I got an electric skillet for 2.50. Definitely a good find!

  4. I was laughing hysterically while reading this post. I could NOT agree more! There are some people that are kind of nuts when it comes to pricing their stuff. At our last city wide sale a few weeks ago (Ihave pics on my site if you want to go look) There were people selling JUNK and I mean real JUNK for insane prices. There was one sale that had this old metal ladder for $60.00! When I drive up and see posted prices that are insane we just drive right off without even stopping. I think that some people just have no clue what a garage sale is. One sale that I went to I had a huge pile of clothes and I asked teh guy what he was selling them for he said a buck a piece. I looked right at him and told him that was pretty high for a yardsale. I them made him an offer on the whole pile and he took it. I guess that sales are hit ot miss but if you get lucky you will get a sale where the person is willing to bargain. Too funny that you made this post!!



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