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Before you start:
News and events — visually
Plot out your route: Check for ads or entire neighbourhood sales Grab small bills and change; no one wants to change a ﬁfty Find a measuring tape, just in case you need it for furniture or curtains If walking, bring reusable bags to stash your ﬁnds If driving, make sure to clear your vehicle of clutter in case of large item ﬁnds
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Everyone loves a good deal, which is why yard sales are so popular in the spring and summer. And by following some easy tips, you can turn your hunting excursion into an enjoyable one, and hoepfully come away with some good loot
You bought something that requires batteries. Did you remember to check for old, corroded batteries in the compartment?
Yard sales 101
Don’t be afraid to haggle:
If the seller won't budge, try again later. Hey, that season of Friends you were looking for. Score! Did you check to make sure the right DVDs were in the case?
Start early. Don't wait until later in the day when all the good stu is probably gone.
Buy in bulk:
If two items are $3 each, try o ering $5 for the pair.
Get a receipt:
Nice. A giant rack of clothes.
Is it counterfeit?
Look for inferior packaging, misspellings, unclear printing; materials may feel cheap and ﬂimsy.
Someone has old shoes for sale. Don’t even go there. Used shoes have been molded to their previous owner’s feet. Poorly ﬁtting shoes can cause pain and health problems over time.
You can usually ﬁnd some good deals on these. Don't go by the size on the label. The clothes have been washed a few times and have probably shrunk.
If you buy a large item that you have to come back to pick up, get a receipt showing that you already paid for it.
That lamp you found sure will look nice in the living room. Did you remember to check the cord for frays, or loose/exposed parts on the plug? These can be a potential ﬁre hazard.
You found an ugly framed picture. Maybe you can ditch the picture and use the cool frame for a family photo?
While driving your route, look for any signs pointing to other yard that weren't previously advertised. These sales usually don't get as much tra c and you might score big at them.
People have garage sales for two reasons — to make money and to get rid of stu . Chances are, if they've still got a lot of items left at the end of the day, they'll be ready to slash prices so they don't have to haul it away anywhere or put it back in the house.
Look for safety labels:
Avoid electrical or gas products if a label from a recognized certiﬁcation organization such as CSA Group is missing. Go for the gold! Any jewelry that is actually gold will be marked with a 24k, 14k, or 10k. Someone has old bike, hockey or construction helmets for sale. Avoid them. You don’t know their history or what damage may be hidden from plain view. A helmet that has been in a serious crash may have lost its full protective capabilities. You really could use that car seat for junior ... Avoid it. There is no way to tell if it’s been damaged and it's not worth the risk to your child. That mattress sure looks comfy ... Beware when buying any used bedding. You never know where bedbugs are lurking.
SUSAN BATSFORD, GRAPHICS EDITOR, TWITTER @SBATS1; INFOGRAPHIC BY MEGAN DINNER/QMI AGENCY