Pricing Yard Sale Items: A Guide

stacks of thread with price tags

So you’ve decided to have a yard sale. You got tired of seeing all of your stuff taking up space in the attic. Or you got sick of saying: “When was the last time you actually used this thing?” We get it. It’s time to clear it all out. Congratulations! That’s a big decision to make and the first step to having a yard sale! Now comes the hard part: organizing. Are you starting to panic wondering how to price yard sale items? Don’t worry, we can help. Pricing yard sale items is a piece of cake as long as you follow these easy guidelines!

Organize Early

Organize early. Well, duh, you might be thinking. But we’re not just talking about putting random items in various piles around your front lawn. Strategy is very important in the early stages of having a yard sale and pricing items. Believe it or not, research is incredibly helpful before you begin. It can be hugely beneficial to do some online hunting for similar items to yours. Find out what your belongings originally cost and what they’re going for now. If you’re able, try going to other yard sales in your area to scope out what other people are doing. You don’t want to completely overprice your items and not get any business because buyers would rather get it cheaper down at the Johnson’s. Pricing yard sale items is easy when you have your organization down!

Set Your Prices Firmly Ahead of Time

rows of fabric with price tags

An important thing to keep in mind when figuring out how to price yard sale items is that you don’t want to be caught off guard in the middle of your sale. If you’re not confident with your prices, or what you’re selling, you probably won’t have great success. Go through your belongings and organize prices for everything, even the smallest items. Decide right then and there whether or not you are willing to haggle. Because there will always be one person: “How much? $25? I’ll give you $15!” If you’re comfortable haggling, go for it! It can be fun and you can definitely make a good chunk of change that way. Otherwise, be firm and clear with your prices. Having people wanting to negotiate is a risk factor no matter how great you are at pricing yard sale items. And, frankly, it can be a bit of an annoyance.

With your prices chosen, you have to display them somewhere! Some people choose a color sticker system, others write each price out individually. We think either one can work, but whichever way you choose, you need it to be completely clear how you price your yard sale items. If you’re going to do color stickers, you’ll need to display what the colors correspond with. Choose only a handful of colors so buyers aren’t constantly forgetting and needing to recheck the sheet. And use neon! This is not the time for pastel stickers. Go neon green, yellow, orange – anything bright to get attention. On the other hand, pricing yard sale items can be done on individual pieces as well. Every item should be tagged clearly, unless it’s a box of books, for example, that are all one dollar each. In this case, just the box should be marked. Unless you plan to use a label maker, or print something from online, the tag itself should be sturdy, easily read, and gentle on the items. Try to use a thick marker on the tag to make it easy to read and write the price before you place the tag on the item to prevent any bleeding through from the ink. Remember this when wondering how to price yard sale items: items should be cared for with the next owner in mind. Even if something is junk to you, it could be priceless to the next owner and they likely won’t want to buy something that is damaged in any way.

Be Realistic, Not Emotional

This is a hard one and we know it. It’s easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of yard sales. There’s so much to do and plan and organize when pricing yard sale items. And buyers realize this. In the midst of the craziness of the day, yard sellers often forget that just because they think something should be worth a certain price, not everyone will agree. Sure, the knick knack on the mantel from your great-aunt is incredibly sentimental, but Suzy from down the street doesn’t know that. She just thinks it would look nice on her mantel. It’s nothing personal, but not everyone understands the history. Try to see the item for what it is, and not the emotional connection behind it.

Standard Prices

brown handle with hanging tag
Prices will fluctuate anywhere you go. There’s no one definitive guide to pricing yard sale items, unfortunately. A lot of it is good judgment and a certain element of hoping for the best. The good news is, we’ve created a list of standard prices to help give you an idea of what to expect when it comes to how to price yard sale items. But feel free to make it your own!

  • Clothing: Adult clothing is generally priced anywhere between $3-$10. Kids clothing is around $2-$8. Make sure to take into account how worn looking the clothes are.
  • Books: For regular sized novels, paperbacks usually go for $1 – $2, hardcovers $2- $3. Sometimes you can do a deal like, “5 for $5,” or that kind of thing.
  • Toys: With such a wide range of items, you’ll really have to judge pricing these yard sale items on condition and size. But remember, these are pre-played with toys.
  • Technology: Same as toys. While technology will generally sell for more, it’s still a yard sale.
  • Furniture: Furniture can be a big selling point. Tables, couches, etc. are fantastic sale finds. Check the condition and give it your best judgement.

Your How-To is Now Done

So now you know that pricing yard sale items is easy, right? Of course, nothing on this list is a hard and fast rule. Make your yard sale your own, and be prepared to make tough choices, knowing it will be hard to part ways with some items. But it’s all a part of the excitement of hosting a sale! And now your old things will have a new life!

We’d love to talk to you! Contact Yard Sale Radar today!