Stretch Your Dollar: Save money with our garage sale tips

HOUSTON (KTRK) -- With spring upon us, you may be feeling the desire to clean and clear the clutter.

A garage sale is the perfect way to unload a bunch of your unwanted items quickly while making extra money to put towards the bills or that summer vacation you've been saving for.

Before you throw all your goods on the front lawn, there are several strategies you need to employ to attract shoppers and maximize profits.

Here are tips on how to make more money during your next garage sale.

Advertise, everywhere! Post an ad on Craigslist, in your local newspaper and around your neighborhood to get the word out. Tell friends, family and coworkers about the sale and post it on social media sites like Facebook. Highlight the types of items visitors can expect to find to draw a bigger crowd.

Don't call it a garage sale. For whatever reason, the terms "yard sale" or "moving sale" have more positive connotations with local residents.

Review prices.Price items too high and you'll scare off shoppers. Price them too low and you'll be pestered by hagglers who realize you just want to get rid of things. If you're unsure how to price something, both Goodwill and the Salvation Army offer helpful valuation guides for reference. Pin or stick price tags on everything so you don't leave people wondering.

Stage the items.Transform your yard into a story with a little staging, Novak says. For example, group a dress with a bag and a necklace that go together, along with a full-length mirror; place a picnic basket with a fishing pole, and make a sign that says, "Gone fishing." You could also have a board game area with a popcorn bowl, some blankets and a sign that says, "Family game night." "Taking an extra moment to make these little groupings will really pay off; they'll fly off the table," Novak says.

Choose the right date.Yes, it must fit into your busy schedule, but it also must work well for everyone else. This means avoiding major holidays and choosing a date near the first or the 15th of the month, which lands on or around payday for most buyers, says Jamie Novak, New Jersey-based author of "Keep This Toss That." A weekend in early summer, when it's not as hot, usually does best, says Andrew Schrage, co-owner of Money Crashers Personal Finance, a personal finance website.
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