How to Shop Garage Sales
It’s prime time for some second-hand shopping, particularly at garage and yard sales. Weekends find a bevy of bargains on nearly every neighborhood corner. With up-cycling, reusing, and refurbishing a way of life for many home decorators, savvy and goal-oriented shoppers have developed certain strategies for finding that perfect piece for their home.
Map it out. Research sales online (Craigslist) or in the newspaper Wednesday and Thursday and map out a plan of action.
Go early. The prime time to shop is early. Don’t waste away these precious few hours stopping for coffee or breakfast.
Bring cash, plenty of cash. Never let an item slip away because you don’t have enough money on hand.
Plan for transport. If you’re seriously looking for a dining set or dresser, bring a truck or have one available to you that day for pick up. If returning to pick up, make clear and concise arrangements with the homeowner, making sure there’s a “sold” sign left on the item and perhaps a receipt.
Bring a tape measure. If you have a specific (or limited) space to fill, it’s a necessity.
Bags and Baskets. Whether they’re on your list or not, you may find yourself picking up armfuls of clothes (coats are always a good find), vases, frames, or bowls. Bring your own sturdy bag or basket for convenience and courtesy.
Some of the best finds come from big places. Head to downtown Sac or San Francisco for fabulous finds with edgy appeal.
Upscale communities can offer high-end goods at bargain basement prices. Pencil in some neighborhood (and sale) exploring on your Napa, Carmel, and Tahoe excursions.