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Survey Shows What Shoppers Want At Garage Sales

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Survey Shows What Shoppers Want At Garage Sales

CHICAGO (CBS) ― For the last couple of days, we've been giving you tips on how to stage a successful garage sale. We've heard from all the experts; now it's time to hear from the people who really matter: the shoppers. Tonight, in the last part of "The Ultimate Garage Sale Guide", CBS 2's Dorothy Tucker holds her own yard sale, and surveyed shoppers to learn what really works. 

 Click here to download a free copy of the Ultimate Garage Sale Guide. It includes many more tips, plus important safety information.

Yard sales are a lot of work. It takes weeks to collect all the stuff, and days to research, price, promote and set it up to make the perfect sale.

Part of our sale included a survey. We gathered information from 43 shoppers. That gave us some insight into what makes a successful garage sale. We learned that advertising is key.

What works best? Survey says:

1) Garage Sale Signs
2) Neighborhood Newspaper Ads
3) Internet Sites
4) Flyers

"What I would suggest is that you put one of these signs out by the street, and then as they're driving by they'll be able to see that sign pointing down the alleyway," said Estate Sale Expert Nancy Kirby.

Next on the survey: what do shoppers want to buy at garage sales? Out of a list of 20 items that included antiques, toys, clothing and more, shoppers chose their favorite four.

Survey says:

1) Books
2) Kitchen Appliances and Bath Items
3) Furniture
4) Home Décor

"They're looking for bargains. Every day items, pots and pans, linens, holiday décor. You can find brand new furniture," said Estate Sale Expert Diane Hudec.

The hunt for bargains is big this year, and it's bringing out droves of shoppers. People like Sherry Garvey who only went to a dozen garage sales last summer are going more often this year.

"I've probably been to 100 of them in the last couple of weeks," Garvey said.

Why so many?

"Because there are things that I need and I don't have the money to afford them when I go to a store, and they're cheaper and good quality still at a garage sale," Garvey said.

Garvey exemplifies the most important finding of our survey: 69 percent of the shoppers said price is more important this year because of job loss, salary reduction or fixed budgets. Sellers need to consider that fact.

"If you price them the right way, more people will buy your stuff," Hudec said. "You may not make a whole lot, but you'll make more than you would if you price them too high."

We've learned a lot in our three-part series, and we are sharing it all with you. 

(© MMIX, CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved.)

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