Grow your Database Through Community Garage Sales

Play Video
There are so many powerful ways to connect with your community. Hosting a garage sale is one of them. You don’t have to be a full-time event planner or community organizer to benefit from this type of wide-scale event. As Nicole Romanik and Natalie Antosh will tell you, it takes time, organization, and a lot of follow-up.
Natalie Antosh of Cleveland, Ohio is a long-time agent who uses garage sales as a way to connect with residents and be a leader in the community she serves. Nicole Romanik used garage sales as a tool to help launch her real estate career in Northern New Jersey over the last couple of years and grow her database. Both agents have had transactions, increased their brand awareness, and met people in their communities they wouldn’t have otherwise known from the garage sales they host.
To put on a garage sale that resonates with your community for all the right reasons, check out the following 8 best practices that have made both Natalie and Nicole’s respective garage sales a hit.
1. Confirm the opportunity is available in your area
It’s important to make sure that no one else in your area – including your town – hosts their own garage sale before you set up your own. Once you’ve determined that it’s possible to coordinate a city-wide garage sale in your area, you’ll want to figure out the necessary permissions and permits you may need to acquire. You don’t want to get underway with the planning to find you need to press pause.
2. Pick the garage sale date ahead of time
Choose specific dates and times. You may choose a single weekend day, a full weekend, or even an extended weekend. However, once the day is chosen, stick with it. You may want to coordinate with the local town calendar to make sure that there are no known conflicts that will draw attendance away from the garage sale. For instance, Natalie makes sure that there aren’t any scheduled swim meets or softball tournaments for the weekend she chooses.
3. Lay out a marketing calendar
Design a plan to advertise the garage sale in advance so that you know it’s being adequately marketed. You’ll want to initially send a save-the-date and then continually stay time of mind via social media, newsletters, emails, and local media outlets. If you manage a local event page or neighborhood page, or if your town has an event Facebook page, be sure to take advantage of it! And don’t underestimate the importance of signage – participants should have signs in their yard and on their streets pointing attendees in the right direction.
4. Involve other co-sponsors.
Enlist the help of other co-sponsors and volunteers. Co-sponsors can be other local businesses and help defray the cost of the event. You’ll want to be able to provide them with the cost breakdown and workload associated with being a sponsor. Sponsors can also provide discounts to be used the weekend of the event in order to encourage the community to visit their businesses. Volunteers can be anyone in the community willing to help with other aspects of the event, such as posting signage
5. Provide a sign-up for garage sale participants
Offer signups for participation in the garage sale via QR code online and in local businesses prior to the event. The signup is your opportunity to collect detailed information on participants. For instance, you’ll want to ask for participants’ names, addresses, phone numbers, the items they plan to sell, the day they plan to participate (if your sale is more than one day), if they are willing to volunteer (such as to distribute signs), and if this is their first time participating in the community garage sale.
6. Follow-up with garage sale participants
Because you’ve collected so much information on the front-end from participants, you’ll be better prepared when reaching out to participants regarding what to say and who to talk to. Everyone who has signed up should be followed up with via a phone call. Those that have participated before should be thanked for their continued support. And for those who have signed up yet you have trouble reaching – door knock!
7. Share garage sale map
You’ll want to be sure to share a map of the garage sale locations prior to the event, whether by print-out or by QR code. It’s helpful for attendees to plan their visits around homes that have the merchandise they are looking to purchase.
8. Visit participants on the garage sale day
Plan to spend the days of the garage sale visiting as many of the participants as you can. Talk to them, bring them water, and let them get to know you. Real estate is a relational business, so this is a great time to connect with the people who’ve taken the time to help you make the community garage sale a hit.
Doing an event that benefits the community is a great way to not only build brand awareness, but to contribute to the area where you live. When people know, like, and trust you, they are more willing to bring business your way. And when they know that you are a member of the community that adds value to it, it’s a bonus all-around. What can you do to come from contribution in your hometown?
Scroll to Top