Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Turkey, cranberry sauce and another Imaginarium train table !

Alas, it looks like closing time for this year's garage sale season! With Thanksgiving just days away, the number of yard sales has really dropped off. I was reduced to about five decent houses this past Saturday. Sadly, this upcoming weekend looks even worse. As of tonight, not a single garage sale has been posted on Craigslist for this Saturday. It also happens to be the weekend before Thanksgiving, so I am certain many folks have their attention focused on turkey, football and parades! Can't really blame them, but I am still a little conflicted. While it's a bummer to see the garage sale season come to an end, I am also not against sleeping in on Saturday mornings!

It rained-but I still scored!
But if last Saturday was my last hurrah for the season, it wasn't a bad way to go out. Although a bit rainy, I still found a handful of sales to attend. At one sale I scored something that will probably make me sound like a broken record... another Imaginarium train table set! Unbelievable, right? I discovered the table at a sale held inside a jam packed garage. It was easy to spot. To save space, the sellers had it standing upright. Surrounding the table were lots of cardboard boxes waiting to be moved out to the driveway if the sun peeked out. Most yard sale pickers have been in this challenging situation. Too much stuff shoved in too small a space. Not only was it impossible to look at everything, I nearly broke my neck trying to walk around the garage! But despite all the boxes, I was really only interested in one thing...that Imaginarium train table. The lady was asking a $50 dollar bill for the table and track pieces. That was a number way more then I wanted to pay. I immediately negotiated her down to forty big ones, pointing out the fact that selling the table would free up much needed space in her garage. Although she agreed to take my offer, I think the rain and low buyer turnout had a more to do with changing her mind then my negotiating skills.

Arriving home, Sonny Boy help me carry the Imaginarium table into the garage. Ironically, we plopped it in the same spot where the previous table had sat just weeks before. Once again, it took up residence on Mrs. Dude's side of the garage. Logistically, it just works better for my garage sale acquisitions to be stored on Mrs Dude's side. Although Mrs. Dude hates losing her prime spot to a train table, I did my best song and dance to convince her the table would be sold quickly. It's a no-brainer! In fact, I am so confident that it will sell, I listed it on Craigslist for a very bold price of one hundred dollars!

The hundred dollar mark hasn't seemed to scare anyone away. The table attracted a huge amount of interest. However, it seemed like all my potential buyers were super busy moms who couldn't find the time to drive to my house! Most told me they really, really wanted the table, they couldn't pick it up right away due to a kid's doctor appointment...a work conflict...a school schedule...or hubby had the car. The reasons were endless! The e-mail activity got so crazy I started losing track of all the moms and what they told me! In the future, I am considering sending a form e-mail to all future inquiries with the simple instructions, "Please just call me when you're actually in your car and prepared to pick it up!"

But despite all this frustrating e-mail dancing, I did get the table sold. A nice lady stopped by and paid me a cool $100 dollars for the table. She told me she bought the table for her young daughter. I helped mom carry the big Imaginarium table to her car. After figuring out how to drop the rear seats on the borrowed SUV, we pushed the big table into the rear cargo area. This time, no toes were hurt in the process! (See previous blog.) After making an easy sixty dollar profit, I wouldn't mind scoring one last train table for the season. That's a bit of wishful thinking on my part, considering the garage sales have all but ended for the year!

Speaking of the holiday season, if you haven't already done so, any Christmas themed and gift items should be posted on eBay immediately. One look at all the Christmas commercials on television proves the holiday buying season has already begun! I started posting my holiday stuff over a week ago. In addition to it being the "most wonderful time of the year," I love the fact that almost everything I post on eBay ends up sold. Junk that sat dormant in previous auctions will get plenty of looks and attention during
Thomas Train piece finally sold!
this time of year. Even things you wouldn't expect like pre-owned clothing will often see holiday bidding. It's a great opportunity for you to clear out "stinker" inventory. For example, here's one that might surprise you; I bought this Thomas the Tank Engine piece for two dollars at a garage sale last year. It was brand new in the original box. While you might think a new Thomas piece would sell quickly, this piece went unloved for many auctions. Weird, right? After several auction strikeouts, I finally reposted it last Christmas and sold it for $15 dollars! So even if you are absolutely convinced you have a stinker that won't sell, try one more time during the holiday season.  

But let's not completely rush past Thanksgiving just yet. It's one of my favorite holidays and this Dude has a lot to be thankful for. Down a few lines on my list is my incredible garage sale hobby wherein  I regularly turn dollar bills into twenties, fifties and even hundreds! I am also thankful for the many readers who visit MoneyintheGarage and share your great comments and tips. With that in mind, be sure to have a great Thanksgiving celebration with your friends and family. Enjoy some turkey, take in a parade and rest up while you can. The busy Christmas season is about to begin!


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  1. Glad you found another table! It is sad to see the garage sale season ending but like you said....sleeping in a bit later is a plus! ~~Pam

    1. I just sold it today too! $100 - gots to love it, right?

      Pam- Yes...Mmmm, sleeping in followed by a good cup of coffee and the Saturday morning newspaper. That works for me!

      Thanks for writing in....Dude!

  2. Gobble, gobble, to you, too, Dude! Love reading about your "Find-N-Flip" items! Finding someone who really loves the thrill of the hunt and then the fun of turning a buck into.......well, MANY MANY more is great! Sometimes I don't think others "get" me and this fun (not to mention WAY profitable!) hobby I do so love! Had to shut down my ebay store while I drove a car out to our AZ house, and when I opened it back up the week I got back it was an EASY $600 - selling stuff I had listed - didn't need to do anything but package, throw it in an envelope and then transfer the money in my Paypal Account to the husband's beer account!! LOL!

    Counting the many, many blessings I have been giving, and THANKFUL for each and every one of them!

    1. Susie Q - When it comes to flipping on eBAy, I totally "get you' for sure! It's an awesome feeling, right? That's very cool that you take time off and still generate $600 in cash! Gotta luv it!

      You will appreciate this-The eBay app on my Apple Iphone rings like a cash register whenever I've made a sale. So I'll be sitting around the house watching TV or eating dinner and I'll hear my Apple go off with a "Cha-Ching". Usually when this happens I'll yell out, "Woo-hoo...Just made some more money!" Its a great feeling! !

      Definitely something to be thankful for! Thanks for writing and and Gobble, Gobble to you too...Dude!

  3. I used to live in Florida where there were yard sales all year round. Now I live up north and miss those sales. Yesterday we were hunting for a stove/oven and walked into this dingy smelly appliance store. Here he had other random items for sale and I found a New in Box 1997 collector barbie Doll (worth more than the $2 I paid for it). It's already listed!

    1. That's a definite advantage to living down south. From reading it seems like if you live in the right area, you can score some nice stuff. They scoop up Tommy Bahaman shirts, golf shirts, ect.

      I am not complaining too much though. I like the time off. This morning, Mrs Dude, Sonny Boy and I went out for breakfast at local diner. Something I would never take the time to do during Garage sale season! TIme flies by fast , so before you know it I'll be back out there hitting the sales in early's all good!

  4. Our garage sales have come to a screeching halt as well. I'm spending more than I like to at thrift stores, trying to keep inventory in my store, but I'm still making money, so I won't complain. Thanks for sharing your thrifts and flips and your comical writing style with us each week. Happy Thanksgiving! :)

    1. Kim - Like, you, I fall back on the thrift stores to get me through the lean winter. It's actually surprising how well you can do, as long as you stick with hitting the stores consistently.

      I appreciate your nice words and hope to have some good stories and tips for everyone over the winter months.

      Happy Thanksgiving....Dude!