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Thread: Don't let the big house fool you.

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    Smart Canuck Minou's Avatar
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    It's always amazing how people with big houses in desirable areas price things at garage sales. I went to a community garage sale this morning. On Kijiji, I had seen an ad saying that one of the homes was going to be selling "premium" children's clothes, so I made a mental note to check out that sale on my walk through the area. Well, the house was on one of the "premium" streets in that development. It was a big sale in what amounted to a 3-car garage. The people had divided the kids' clothing into large Ziploc freezer bags. Most had two shirts or a shirt and a pair of pants in them. What surprised me was that a lot of the things I saw packaged that way were quite washed-out looking. While many things were Gymboree (and pretty well-worn), many of the items I saw were George or Joe! Funny that two well-used George T-shirts would cost $5! A new-with tags toddler-size fall jacket was $25. A child's bike was $70, and even though someone offered $65, the offer was refused!

    The weird thing is, the place was mobbed, and people were there loading up on the bags of clothing by the armful. Most people sell most children's clothing items for a dollar a piece at a garage sale. Shopping at the end of a season, a person could get brand new Gymboree clothing for their children for a dollar or two more than they were paying at this sale.

    Years ago, I went to a sale in a very exclusive neighbourhood. The yard was pretty much an estate. They wanted $15 for a white, crumb-filled, Hamilton Beach 2-slice toaster!

    I guess it works for the sellers, but are garage salers really willing to spend more for something just because the people selling it are wealthy? Do the people selling genuinely believe that their stuff is worth more, even if it was originally from Walmart?
    This thread is currently associated with: Garage, Guess, Gymboree, Walmart
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    I think sometimes people who are wealthy are just unaware of how much things should cost.
    I went into a high-end store the other day and I couldn't believe how marked up the prices were for things that were pretty much the same quality as elsewhere. But if that's the lifestyle you are used to, you wouldn't know anything about reasonable prices.
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    Canadian Genius anisa's Avatar
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    those big spenders must be hitting hard times if they are trying to pawn off garbage like that!

    do the right thing, just donate it man!
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    GGGRRRR!!!! I HAD JUST WRITTEN A LONG POST AND HIT THE WRONG BUTTON AND IT WENT POOF!!! ...........that's so annoying....

    Anyways, I completely agree with you. Hubby and I will walk away from yard sales where the people are just asking ridiculous prices. It's just annoying (especially when you see that they purchased an item at the dollar store for $1.25 and now they are selling it for $1.00....seriously????)

    We went to a yard sale a few weekends ago where a man was selling a garage full of toys. It was apparent that they had purchased them on clearance or from a warehouse (they had the remains of those lovely clearance/liquidation bright stickers on them), and he was selling them for $1-5 below the regular retail value depending on the toy. He even had put the retail value on a sign by each group of toy! I was looking at them in disbelief when a woman came up to the man, held up a toy that he was selling for $10.00 and said that Toys'R'Us had them on sale for $9.99 this week lol! He was not very impressed because she was pretty loud, and then told her that at least here she would save the taxes! She obviously didn't buy it lol.

    I have never been to a yard sale at a really huge house, but I always wondered if they would price their stuff more lol. I guess each person is different though. We are having a yard sale this weekend with the rest of my family, and we price stuff low, accept most offers (please don't offer me a $0.25 for something marked at $5.00, that's just insulting), and the stuff we don't sell we send to Goodwill or Salvation Army. We're selling it cuz we don't want it anymore. Sure, it would be great to make a bit of money to go out for dinner with hubby or buy something we've wanted, but we're not doing it as a second source of income lol!
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    You should check inside some of these huge houses...the actual house costs so much, some people can hardly afford to furnish it.

    When I went to garage sales, I would usually leave pdq when I saw that the prices weren't reasonable...seems like they wanted to keep their stuff more than I wanted to take it off their hands.
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    My lifestyle is greatly enhanced by yard sales.
    I get so many useful and beautiful things that way.
    ( but try to get the same amount of things out of the house within 48 hrs, so to not accumulate more)

    My yard sale price guideline is about 10% of the price of new retail and a bulk discount the more I buy.
    For a higher price, it better be new, or rare or extremely necessary.
    It is easy to just move away from ridiculous pricing to go to the next yard sale.

    In my experience, homes that are large and expensive tend to have owners who are asking too much money for their used items, and a rare few who practically give items away.

    It has been the most productive overall in yard saling, to go to areas of middle income people who own their own homes.
    Items are decent and prices are mostly appropriate.
    Last edited by greencanuck; Sat, May 12th, 2012 at 09:06 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by marstec View Post
    You should check inside some of these huge houses...the actual house costs so much, some people can hardly afford to furnish it.

    When I went to garage sales, I would usually leave pdq when I saw that the prices weren't reasonable...seems like they wanted to keep their stuff more than I wanted to take it off their hands.
    For many years, my father was in an industry that took him to many properties every day.
    The vast majority of people with monster homes had practically no furniture at all.

    Cheap old card tables and folding chairs were in the kitchen /living room.
    The bedrooms had mattresses on the floor and clothes in cardboard boxes.
    That was most of the furniture you would see.

    These people were so financially overstretched with the huge expensive monster home mortgage that they never let people inside to see that they had nothing else.
    Last edited by greencanuck; Sat, May 12th, 2012 at 07:50 PM.
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    One Awesome Domestic Diva MrsSunshine's Avatar
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    so many good points.. we did quite a few today.. starting at 6AM.. there were already ppl leaving the sale when we arrived at 5:55.. wow. for us unless its a charity sale like the one we went to today where stuff is everywhere and you do bulk purchases and pay all at once.. we rarely buy at sales if there are no prices on anything.. if you don't want to price it y should we buy it.. and like my father I HATE when ppl say make my an offer.. seriously.. ?? its not my stuff... we like to class some sales.. 'we need to pay the rent sale'...for example where prices are like $5 something that is def. not worth $1... we can def. tell when prices are high.. esp. when by 10-11 am they still have a bunch of stuff left.. OH and please clean your stuff up.. at least dust it. ... we did very well this morning.. we hit 10 garage sales.. lots of great deals. I do find its a hit or miss when it comes to house sizes and prices. we could go to a mansion and find dirt cheap prices.. or a small little townhouse and they are asking an arm and a leg.. and visa versa.. its crazy. OH and please.. if your going to advertise for your sale to end at 1pm.. don't pack your stuff up at 11.. and say sorry you missed you out as we drive by.. ALSO.. take your freakin sign down when your done.. its common sense and very disrespectful not to. anyway thats my two cents.. thats all i have left after this morning....lol
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    I remember the first time we had a garage sale. We tried to price everything very reasonably but it immediately became apparent that all of the great, mint condition "Scholastic" books I had purchased for my kids were not going to sell for more than 25-50 cents each. I immediately put the box back in the house and took them to the school librarian the following Monday morning. She was absolutely thrilled to be able to add dozens of good quality books to the library. I added to the school library every year thereafter. There was no way on earth I was going to sell them for 25 or 50 cents when I knew I could forego the money for the opportunity of 'blessing' lots of of other children. I am a book junkie and the school benefited from it! It felt WAY better than a few loonies in my pocket.....
    Last edited by DianneS; Sat, May 12th, 2012 at 08:45 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by marstec View Post
    You should check inside some of these huge houses...the actual house costs so much, some people can hardly afford to furnish it.

    When I went to garage sales, I would usually leave pdq when I saw that the prices weren't reasonable...seems like they wanted to keep their stuff more than I wanted to take it off their hands.
    You and I think alike.
    Some want the big house for show, but they are mortgaged up to their neck.
    "keeping up with the Jones" as they say.

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    One Awesome Domestic Diva MrsSunshine's Avatar
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    thats awesome Dianne.. bet they loved it. have to say my worst pet peeve is those who come to a sale and are told the item is $? and they say 'NO $!.. the person says no its $?.. and the person literally argues and says no i give you $? you take $!.. really..? wow.
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    Some folks are really pushy..in fact, obnoxiously pushy. Of course, then there was the time a lady tried to walk off without paying for an entire box of our best items. She was putting in the car when I popped up behind her and reminded her that she had 'forgotten to pay for it'. Didn't think I'd need to hire security for a garage sale.

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    Smart Canuck Minou's Avatar
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    I know what you mean, Marstec. As a high school student in the mid nineties, I would babysit every day after school for a neighbourhood family. The house was very large, and the family had been living there for about five years. They didn't even have kitchen cupboards, other than the basic frames for the cabinets along one wall. No countertops. I guess they felt they would save money by finishing the kitchen themselves, but it just never seemed to get done. The pantry was a series of boxes lined up against one wall. The only TV they had was a 13 inch, and the sofas were pretty ancient. I think it took years longer for anything to get finished properly around there.

    I love garage sales, though it's harder to get out with two kids now. It's great when I can spend so little for things we need. Fabulous when you can get a barely-worn (and sometimes, I suspect, never worn) pair of kids' winter boots for $1, knowing you would have had to pay $30 to $40 buying them in pretty much the same condition from the store in season.

    Dianne, it's great that you were able to donate your books! When I find books for $0.50 or so, I definitely buy them. They're really valued at our house, and two kids here will get the joy of reading them before they're passed along again. I certainly don't consider them less valuable because they were cheap! It just means that we have a bigger collection of stories to read!

    I agree, Greencanuck, with the whole idea of shopping in middle-income neighbourhoods. People tend to be more realistic! They're not selling because they "need' the money, and they're not overvaluing the things that have been cluttering their home. I think sometimes the wealthier people think they're doing the "little people" a favour by selling them THEIR "valuable" stuff. Sometimes people even seem to assume that those shopping at their garage sale are poor!

    I agree that some buyers can be really pushy at garage sales. I really prefer that people mark their items with a price so I can make a decision to buy it or walk away. I don't usually haggle on price, so it's uncomfortable to ask a price and have the person stand there expecting me to accept a too-high price and buy the item.

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    searching for answers i_forget's Avatar
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    I was MAD yesterday. Took my DD (6) out and we found a sale in a good neighbourhood. I picked up some nice sewing books and a couple other little things and my daughter found a cat knick knack in a box that says $0.10 so I said she could have it. As we are walking around the lady comes up to me and tells me this thing is a collectible and is worth over $60 and the price is $10 on it. I told me daughter that she could not have it for that price and she was so upset (she is going to be a cat lady when she is old lol). I was irritated at the woman for not pricing the items correctly.
    Last edited by i_forget; Sun, May 13th, 2012 at 06:30 PM. Reason: my horrible spelling

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    Smart Canuck Jody22002's Avatar
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    I have had hit and miss with the wealthier areas of town and garage sales. There is one area of the city where the wealthiest people in the city live and I find that the garage sales in that area are great but head into the upper middle class area, and the prices are outrageous. Yesterday, I saw a pair of used "Joe" brand flip flops priced at $8.00. You can buy them brand new for $4.00! Crazy!!!

    It's not just garage sales either. We used to buy A LOT of building supplies at our local Habitat for Humanity Re-Store and the prices were great. I was there last weekend and they were charging more for ceramic tile than Home Depot and some of the tiles in the boxes were busted. I get that they are an awesome charity who helps many people but when I can buy it new somewhere else for cheaper, I am not going to support them.

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