Is it over? Is it over? Is it over? The chant is repeated in a stadium loud, collective, voice.
As far as the Kansas City Royals are concerned, the answer is a disappointing yes. However, if the question is posed regarding the garage sale season in our area, the reply is less certain.
Most of the time, for most of the people, the weather determines the duration of the garage sale season. The reality is that sellers are not too keen on sitting outside in frigid temperatures to make a buck or two. (The cold can make a seller lose sight of the possibility of making thousands of those bills.) When there are few sellers willing to brave the atmospheric elements, then the buyers evaporate as well.
So it is up to Mother Nature. As long as the weather stays warm enough, and the wind does not gust excessively, there will be willing and eager sellers and buyers a plenty. When there is a consistent change in temperature, you will witness a significant lull and an end to the garage sale season.
There is still time to hold a garage sale, especially if you can fit all your goods in your garage. It is an ideal time for an organization to hold a garage sale in an indoor venue (such as a school gym or a large church auditorium). If you are the only “game” in town, more buyers are bound to appear and buy.
Quite frankly, it is curious that there are not more organizational sales at this time of year. Perhaps, there is too much distraction with Halloween, Thanksgiving or winter holidays. It is possible that the masses think of buying new, not used, given those distractions and upcoming holiday events.
For shame and pity’s sake, as they said in the olden days. As garage sale fanatics know, a garage sale is the best way to buy new and to make the most of used. Those of us in the “thrift biz” know that if the minions changed their collective mind, they could change their budget and their life!
That said, as the season winds down, there are some caveats and special tips.
- It is probably not a good idea to have a yard sale or go to one when you need a flashlight to see. Stick to daylight hours, noting that the amount of light we enjoy is different at this time of year, especially after we turn the clocks “back” for daylight savings time.
- Note that the frequency of garage sales will wane between November and March. If you do go to a sale now, consider what you will need before the garage sale season begins next spring. Remember the gifts and holidays you will experience before next year’s seasons. Think about indoor activites (such as reading, knitting, putting together a puzzle or making stuff). Account for frostier times with thrifty buys on mittens, gloves, scarves, boots and coats.
- Review and detail information about the weather in garage sale ads. Make sure that you obtain or provide information about inclement weather. Buyers can become quite peeved if a sale is cancelled because of rain, wind or frost and they were uninformed.
- Prepare during and for “the off season.” It is never too early to plan and get ready. Organize now for sales in the spring. Separate your “trash” from treasure. Consider consigning. Donate accordingly. Try to do a little something each and every week towards having a huge sale at the first signs of spring.
- Some people (and we all know who you are!) find it difficult to withstand a garage sale famine. Four or more months without treasure hunting might prove vexing. Garage sale fanatics might try to chase a bargain at an indoor estate sale or antique mall. Perhaps, you can become a coupon collector and saver. There are flea markets and neighborhood thrift stores. You can follow sales at big box type stores and participate in price matching. Obviously, attend any garage sales that are posted and scheduled.
Recount the season’s best and largest garage sales, and let your garage sale Examiner know your most impressive and interesting scores! Tweets accepted at…where else…@agaragesale.