Garagellenium primer: Get ready to garage sale

Oak Bay-wide garage sale is coming up Saturday, June 11

Jennifer Blyth

Oak Bay News

Are you ready to Garagellenium?

Oak Bay’s annual community-wide garage sale is June 11, meaning now’s the time to sort, price and ready your no-longer-loved treasures.

“It’s a great event,” says this year’s co-ordinator Cassie Kangas, noting that having so many  sales in one neighbourhood brings shoppers from all over the region – great news for sellers.

Homeowners can use the event to sell for their own profit or to raise money for charity. Garage sale addresses are published in the Oak Bay News before the sale, with charity sales identified.

Garage sales are particularly good for home sellers, who know they won’t want to take everything with them when they move, notes Kangas, a long-time local realtor and regular Garagellenium participant. “It’s a good process to be vetting their stuff: ‘Do I want to take these when I move?’”

Garagellenium runs from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. The registration deadline is June 4 – visit for details.

How to host a successful sale

Hosting a garage sale can be a lot of work, but a little planning and organization can make homeowners a tidy profit while also tidying the home. Kangas offers her top tips for a successful sale:

1. Be Organized!

2. Advertise your sale – Garagellenium participants will have their sale advertised in the Oak Bay News.

3. Pre-price – price all items in the days before your sale and ensure everything has a price tag or clearly marked sign. (Some people are too shy to ask prices).

4. Price items realistically.

5. Be prepared to negotiate – Some people will want to dicker, especially if they’re buying multiple items.

6. Be ready to make change – Have some change and small bills on hand. Most people tend to come with $20s from the bank machines.

7. Get noticed – Put out large easy-to-read signs with the date, address and start and end time clearly displayed (take the signs down promptly after the sale ends).

8. Have proper parking – Be a good neighbour and let neighbours know there may be extra traffic during your sale.

9. Be ready to go – Have all sale items out and displayed before the time your sale is advertised to start. Try to have items displayed in a place that’s easy for people to see from the road and make sure they’re easy to reach. Do not have sale items in an area that contains items that are not for sale.

10. Have a bin of free stuff – make sure it is clearly marked free.

11. Get electric – If selling any electrical items, have an extension cord plugged in so people can test the item.

12. Clothes caution – If selling clothes, go through the pockets before putting them out for sale.

13. Add variety – Have a wide selection of items if possible, or ask friends and family to bring their treasures to sell at the same time.

14. Keep it clean – Sell items that are clean and in good condition if possible

15. Bags & boxes – Have some shopping bags or boxes for people to carry items away.


Tips for buyers

Don’t be an Early Bird. 9 a.m. does not mean 8:30 a.m.

Respect sellers’ property, stick to the driveway or sidewalk if possible

Carry small bills and change, don’t expect the seller to always have change

Do not make insulting comments about items on sale, you are effectively insulting the seller

It’s OK to bargain but be reasonable – often your best bet is to buy multiple items enticing the seller to give you a break

Be mindful when parking and driving – small congested streets can be dangerous

Don’t ask for holds – if you want a larger item and need to come back for it prepay and give seller your contact info

Be courteous to your fellow “salers” say “please” and “thank you”

Most importantly have fun!