The Art of Price Negotiations When Shopping at Yard Sales
Planning to do some yard sale shopping this spring? Well, you aren't alone. The spring and summer months are the prime time for yard sale shopping, as many homeowners are looking to clean out unwanted belongings in an effort to earn some cash. But if you're hoping to buy and resale items purchased at a yard sale for a profit, you'll need to master the art of negotiations. Just because an item is marked for a specific price doesn't necessarily mean that it's the bottom price. With the right approach, you can often negotiate the owner into selling it at a lower price.
Dress Nice... But Not Too Nice
You might be surprised to learn that your choice of clothes will play an impact on your ability to negotiate better prices at a yard sale. If you show up looking like you just rolled out of bed, owners may be hesitant to lower the prices of their products. Additionally, if you show up wearing a business suit, they may assume you are looking to resell the items for a profit, in which case they may hold their ground on the price. Even if you are planning to resell the items for a profit (and you probably are), don't let the seller know, as this may affect his or her decision on whether to lower the price.
Bundle Items Together
Among the easiest ways to negotiate better prices at yard sales is to bundle items together. If the owner is selling old vinyl records for $2 bucks a piece, for instance, you can offer to buy 10 of them for $15. Because you are buying bulk, there's a good chance that he or she will agree to this lower price. Besides, the worst that can happen is they'll say "no" and you'll have to settle for the original price.
Be Reasonable with Your Negotiations
Arguably, the single most important to follow when negotiating deals at yard sales is to be reasonable. In other words, don't offer $10 for an item that's marked $100. This can have a negative impact by discouraging the seller from budging from his or her price.
Look for Flaws
The vast majority of items sold at yard sales and garage sales are used (not surprisingly). Therefore, there's a good chance of them containing flaws and damage. You can use this to your advantage by negotiating lower prices base on the flaws. If you see a coach with a small scuff in the fabric, ask the seller if he or she is willing to accept a lower price it because of the damage.