Time to Get A Cruiser: Garage Sale Tips

I know that title makes little sense but I’ve been absent from SacRag for a while and I guess I’m a bit rusty. Anyhoo (a phrase I hate), I don’t know whether it’s just that I’ve been living in Sacramento for a while now, or the subliminal pressure of past SacRag posts on the subject, or all the talk of “the environment”, but I’m obsessed with getting a bike.  And not the kind of bike that would give people any chance of mistaking me with an athlete either. I’m in the market for a super-vain cruiser that can only get me to Burr’s ice cream and back, people. The obsession is so strong that it’s finally motivated me to have that garage sale I’ve been talking about for months. So it’s coming up. The date and location have been intentionally ommited so as to preserve our hallowed SacRag from becoming a craigslist substitute. I’m not plugging my sale here, I’m wondering: Any good tips out there for pulling off a blow-out garage sale, Sacramento style?

28 thoughts on “Time to Get A Cruiser: Garage Sale Tips”

  1. FP, if that stuff includes an awesomely cute cruiser refer to the beginning of my post and email me! 🙂


  2. HeyMeg, you can be the SacRag’s very own Cruiser Chick! (Man, September of ’05, seems like only 10 or 11 months ago)

    Be sure the stuff you’re looking to sell out of your garage isn’t better served being donated to a local charity. The tax deduction may outweigh the hassle of having 100 randoms roaming through your hood trying to get your $1 flatware set for $.25 all the while having frequent Sac Rag commenter “adamant” warn you about the folks that go to garage sales only to “scout” your house for a future burglary so be sure to hide your valuables and…what were we talking about again?


  3. Step One: ADVERTISE!! Sacbee and Craigslist are a MUST! Be creative and baby stuff brings in the people like nobody’s business.

    Step Two: LOTS OF SIGNS! I prefer creative ones, but traditional ones work, too.

    Step Three: Price to sell. I don’t like to barter so I just priced it to get rid of it. Sold out in one day by 1pm.


  4. I advocate for the donation/tax deduction too.

    The SPCA will come pick up your stuff, and so will the Salvation Army and others, I’m sure. The new Goodwill at Fulton & Hurley has an easy-access drop-off on the side of the building.

    WEAVE Works between I & J near Pete’s Pizza is a great place to take women’s career clothes, as is the Sacramento Food Bank & Family Services “Suits & Satin” program (they take men’s business attire too.)

    Do you have any old bridesmaid or cocktail dresses you’ll never wear again (or any of the accessories to go along with those?) Give them to Cinderella’s Closet! http://www.safeinsacramento.org/html/donate1.html

    I just read through this site, and that seems like a lot of work:



  5. I hate itemizing deductions, so I always opt for the yard sale. I actually think they’re kind of fun. My husband and I have had quite a few over the years. We once had a yard sale in Berkeley at which we sold everything for a quarter. I mean everything: bookshelf, books, etc. We made $80 in quarters!!!! I would second the advice given above, especially with regards to advertising. The only other thing I might add is that you should continually arrange and re-arrange your stuff. If it looks too picked over, no one will buy it.


  6. You have to watch their eyes… If they keep on trying to take a peek in the house or back yard, they are definitely casing the joint.


  7. I think I just figured out how to get rid of all of my unwanted junk… I’ll “donate” it to a garage sale that I find on Craigslist… If you see someone unloading a pickup in front of your house the night before your big garage sale, it’s probably just me. Fire a warning shot with your shotgun and I’ll be on my way.


  8. Sell stuff?!! Always a bad idea. As soon as you sell it you will need it, and have to buy all new stuff!


  9. Location, location, location, oh and snd some signs. I had a GS near Watt and El Camino and man I could not believe the traffic. I sold stuff that was total junk and people bought it. Things started to sell so well I went into the house to look for more things to sell 🙂


  10. Why donate? The whole point of selling is to profit and use said profit for a bitchin’ vain beach cruiser.

    As far as a donation of Xbox games, the idea brings me back to childhood trauma I suffered when my mother “donated” all of my Star Wars and Transformers- effectively selling a down-payment on a new house for pocket-change.

    You never know what’s going to be a collectible some day. (A word of advice, though: if it’s labeled “Limited Edition,” it won’t be)


  11. People sometimes forget that time has value, too. You gotta factor the value of spending your weekend selling the stuff.

    I’m seriously liking runnergirl’s idea. I think I’m going to haul it all to the charity thrift stores.

    Except the cruiser. Sorry, I’m keeping mine. Trek city bike, almost as comfortable as my couch.


  12. When I wrote “too” at the beginning of my post, I was referencing YOUR post about donations. Sorry to steal your thunder by expanding on the idea and offer some specifics! It shall be duly noted that RonTopofIt was the originator of the donation idea.

    HeyMeg, City Bicycle Works has a great selection of cruisers. I picked up a super-cute pink one in the summer of ’05 to accompany my mountain bike & hybrid. They also had a tangerine colored cruiser with some Hello Kitty graphics on it, including Hello Kitty on the tire treads. I loved it, but no self-respecting mid-30’s person should be riding such a bike.

    You should check with your company to see if they offer any bike incentives. We were reimbursed for part of our bike purchase price when we turned in documentation that we had replaced 250 miles of car trips with bike trips (including ALL trips, not just those for commute purposes.) It took a couple months of riding the bike to the store and gym, but it paid for my cruiser.


  13. FP, I appreciate what you’re saying about the value of time, but you are underestimting the amount of enjoyment I get from being outside talking to neighbors and strangers. I’m weird like that.

    Game Guy, you know when mortgage brokers use words like “Optimus Prime” they aren’t refering to Transformers, right? Though that would be awesome.


  14. But if you were to use the same amount of time itemizing your taxes, you’d get back a nice enough refund to throw the block party that would be talked about for YEARS!

    “Yay for Schedule A!”


  15. HeyMeg, you used an “Optimus Prime” reference- I am in love with you.

    I say screw the donations, re-sell is one of the wonderful things about having too much already! You want your money for a cruiser, you gonna get your money for a cruiser.

    Have you considered selling a kidney or plasma to raise enough money? If you consider all of the extraneous body parts we have that you can profit from, I bed you’d be cruising in no time…


  16. never, NEVER let them use your bathroom. Even if they then force their child out of the car (out of the blue) and make their child pee on the side of your house (while the child is completely dry and crying out of fear of their own mother.) Strange, but true.


  17. HeyMeg, I’m with you. It’s fun to talk to strangers and neighbors. Do you have a lawn chair? A radio? Some lemonade? It can be a very nice way to pass the day. Plus, it’s amazing how something that means very little to you can make someone else’s day. I like giving yard sales, but I like shopping at them even more…I’ll help you look for a cruiser!!!


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