Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Ins and Outs of "Treasure Hunting"

Hi everyone! It’s Danielle again. Going to garage sales, estate sales, and flea markets is a big part of my job. I go out and look for treasure, photograph it, list it, and sell it to others that enjoy the convenience of shopping from their computers. Over the past year I feel like I have gotten so much better at treasure hunting than I was when I initially began. In this post I want to quickly share a few of the main things I have learned.

1. Going with a friend or family member is extremely helpful. The cost of gas is the biggest expense in going to garage sales, so by taking turns driving, it can lighten the load on everyone involved, and allow for greater profits.

2. Antique stores can often be a waste of time. Although once in a great while it is possible to find good deals, it happens very rarely and is not the always most effective use time. Most often the items are already priced at what they are worth, which doesn’t leave much room for Etsy sellers to make a profit.

3. A small town in the country’s city-wide garage sale can be amazing. I went to Newcastle’s city-wide garage sale in April not expecting much, but I found so many good deals. It seemed like there were older things and a lot of items with more character than I have found in big cities.

4. It is also a good idea to pack snacks and cold drinks. Almost every time I spend the day going to sales I end up spending more on food and drinks than I do on the items I buy for resale.

5. Finally, my last piece of advice is if you are looking for estate sales (which is where you can usually find more vintage than garage sales) it is super, super helpful to use a newspaper to locate them. I only started doing this recently, but it makes such a huge difference. My strategy before was always to look for and follow signs on the road or to look up a few on Craigslist and print off a map, but that was a huge waste of time and gas. Anyone can say anything on Craigslist, but if someone is willing to pay for a newspaper ad, their sale is usually legitimate.

I hope this helps!

- Danielle

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