16 Reasons to Always Stop at Garage Sales

Some people love garage sales; others pass by without a second thought, writing them off as a jumble of other people's trash. If you’re in that second group, you’ve been missing out on a chance to score some incredible deals. While not every garage sale is a treasure trove, there are plenty of bargains to be had, and even better, unique opportunities you won’t find on the big-store shelves. Here are 16 reasons to check out a garage sale this weekend.

Good Frames Cost Next to Nothing

Picture Frames At Garage Sale

Picture frames can be expensive. In fact, it’s not uncommon for a frame to cost more than the print inside. While you’re unlikely to find a lost masterpiece at a garage sale, you will often find amateur or dated paintings in unique, high-quality frames. Chuck the artwork, and reuse the frame.

Related: 10 Inventive Ways to Display Family Photos


Find New Additions to Your Collection

Yard Sale Antiques Collectibles

Whether you collect old dolls, cat figurines, vintage telephones, or postcards from the 1920s, visit enough garage sales and you’re bound to strike gold. Plus, you get to enjoy the thrill of the hunt, which is a large part of the fun for most collectors.

Related: 17 Things You Won’t Believe People Actually Collect


Furnish Your Home for Less

Yard Sale Furniture

Although secondhand upholstered furniture poses a bedbug risk, wooden furnishings, including tables, nightstands, dressers, and armoires, are a good bet at garage sales. As long as the piece is in fair condition, minor cosmetic issues can be overcome with a coat of paint and new hardware. And if you have the DIY itch, you can put in a little extra effort to transform a ho-hum piece of furniture into a one-of-a-kind wow.

Related: The 15 Best Cheap Furniture Makeovers We've Ever Seen


Eclectic Dishes Can Be Found in Abundance

Dishes Garage Sale

If you don’t mind mismatched collections of dishware, garage sales are definitely worth your while. Antique dishes, drinkware, barware, and serving pieces can be yours for little more than a song. 

Related: 10 Kitchen Favorites That Last a Lifetime


Stock Your Kitchen with Classic Brands

second hand cookware

Not only are yard sales great places for finding unique dishes and glasses, but you can get classic cookware for a steal. Cast iron pans and dutch ovens can cost a fortune when bought new, but not when you get them used. Best of all these kitchen staples last a lifetime.

Related: 10 Kitchen Favorites That Last a Lifetime


Bask in Nostalgia

Nostalgia Items Garage Sale

Missing the days of vinyl records? Looking for board games you remember from your childhood? Still hoping to complete your collection of Beanie Babies? You can find all these treasures from the past and more at the typical garage sale. It’s like a trip down memory lane.

Related: The 10 Best Things to Buy Secondhand


Get Fit on a Budget

Used Gym Equipment

We know you are going to stick with that new exercise regimen, and luckily for you, garage sales are perfect for picking up barely used exercise equipment of all types, abandoned by people who, unlike you, gave up on their exercise resolutions!

Related: 10 Ways to Score Big at a Yard Sale


Outfit Growing Kids

Garage Sale Kids Clothes

Kids grow fast; unfortunately, their clothing doesn’t grow with them. Instead of stretching your budget to fit your child’s ever-increasing stature, why not shop garage sales for nearly new kids' pants, coats, sweaters, and shirts? You’ll frequently find adorable garments for babies, toddlers, and young children—and sympathetic parents may even be willing to barter with a fellow parent to find a lower price that works for you.

Related: 11 Things Never to Buy Secondhand


Help Your Garden Grow

Buying Tools At Yard Sales

Let your garden—and your bank account—grow with flowerpots, watering cans, and yard tools purchased secondhand for a few dollars at garage sales, at a fraction of the price you’d pay to pick up the same items new. Word to the wise: Pass on hopelessly rusted tools and cracked pots.

Related: 11 Ways to Buy Your Garden on the Internet


Play Dress Up

Garage Sale Costume Jewelry

Shopping garage sales is a great way to add serious bling to your wardrobe without breaking your budget. Sure, you might have to do a bit of searching, but you can find vintage brooches, pretty glass necklaces, chandelier earrings, and big, bold, and beautiful cocktail rings mixed in with the less desirable items.

Related: The Best Flea Markets in Every State


Build Up Your Library

used books

Peruse yard sales to find classic novels that might be missing from your bookshelf. Rather than spending $15 for a new book, you can get the same one—only used—for dollars. The covers might be different, but Shakespeare and Austen’s stories always remain the same. That said, keep shopping at your local bookstore to support your current favorite authors!

Related: 9 Smart Uses for Dusty Old Books


Score Hot Wheels

second hand bike

Whether it’s for you or your kid, garage sales are a great spot to find affordable bicycles and scooters. Don’t walk away if it has a flat tire or worn out cushion, those parts are easy to replace. Just don’t take the helmet with it; a used bicycle helmet is unsanitary and could be damaged.

Related: 35 Great Things You Can Get for Free Today


Snag Some Storage

used baskets

Every house can use more storage. You can save a lot of money by skipping the stores and heading to yard sales for the goods. Not only will you find super cheap crates and baskets, but you can scout out bookshelves and sturdy trunks (which cost a fortune in furniture stores).

Related: 18 Clever Storage Solutions You Can DIY for Free


Revisit Retro Video Games

used video games

Everything old is new again, and that includes video games. While you can find classics like Nintendo and Game Boy online, garage sales usually offer better prices. These people are looking to get rid of their stuff, while those selling games and consoles online want the most competitive offer. Plus, stumbling upon a limited edition find is part of the fun!

Related: 10 Retro Home Products That Are Roaring Back into Style


Christmas in July (or August or September...)

Christmas Decorations Garage Sale

While decorating your house for the holidays is a joy, the credit card balance that comes with seasonal shopping is a drag. But when you stock up on lights, ornaments, tree stands, and lawn decorations at a local garage sale, you’ll get the thrill of saving money, acquire some lovely decorations for your home, and still have cash left over for your gift budget.

Related: 10 Ways to Decorate Your Xmas Tree for Under $10


It’s Fun

Garage Sale Tips

The number one reason to check out garage sales? It's fun. Where else can you score a pair of designer
jeans for a dollar, finally complete your collection of vintage Barbie dolls, and pick up the perfect side chair for your living room, all for less than a $20 bill?

Related: 10 Smart Ways to Snag Free Stuff for Your Home


Get Shopping

Get Shopping

Now you know what to keep your eyes out for the next time you pass a garage sale!


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