5 Flea Market Selling Tips

On a delightfully crisp and unfortunately windy Saturday morning my alarm jarred me awake at 5:30am.

Not your ideal Saturday morning? Well, I may convince you differently in just a couple of minutes!

The jarring alarm was a result of an intense purging that caused a mountain of items I didn’t need in the house anyway. Hurray me!

However, having already hosted a yard sale earlier this summer (you can read all about my 2014 yard sale and 2013 yard sale) and it being late – or even past – yard sale season I thought my luck would be pretty low if I threw up signs and put my stuff out in the yard a la yard sale style.

Then a friend suggested I go to the local flea market.

Now, I’m a total flea market convert.

Do you think I would have made a $169 profit if I had held it in my yard. I would put a month’s salary into definitely NOT!

Since I am now a big proponent of the flea market, while also being quite the newbie at it, I thought I would pass along my newly acquired flea market wisdom for you.

5 Flea Market Selling Tips

5 Flea Market Selling Tips | www.rappsodyinrooms.com

1. Suck it up and get there early.

Our flea market started at 6am. Sunrise was at 7:12am. I thought for sure that no one would be there before the sun rose. Boy was I wrong! It was hopping when I pulled in around 6:15! As soon as I pulled my boxes out of the car people swarmed me with flashlights, ready to buy.

I sold more between 6am and 7am than I did between noon and 1pm. Almost no one bought in the afternoon but I had sold quite a few things even before the sun rose that morning.

 2. 10 Cents is Better Than No Cents

If your items are really valuable (like the Longaberger dessert stand, wrought iron antique candlestick holder) than hold firm at a price. If they aren’t valuable (aka not worth the time to list it on Craigslist, or DSLR camera) than any money is better than none. If they are going to Goodwill anyways, one penny is a profit on them. So negotiate so you can sell as high as possible but if you know the person wants to buy it, eventually cave and let them have it at their price. It’s still money in your pocket and one less thing to put back in the car.

 3. Create an Emotional Tie

When someone shows interest in an item, help them make an emotional connection. Sometimes I would tell them a story about an item. Or setup a vignette on a way they would possibly use it. Or ask them if they had someone/someplace special in mind for the item. Help them connect to the object and they are more likely to buy it. #usedcarsaleswomanmegan

4. Park Near a Bathroom

Laugh all you want but if you’re by yourself you’ll thank me later. I love people but I’ve had many people swipe things from yard sales so I didn’t want anything valuable walking away at the flea market. Picture me sprinting towards the Porta Potty. Next time I’ll plan strategically for my bathroom breaks.

5. Pack Snacks and Water

You won’t really have time to go out and get food but you will definitely need it to keep your energy going all day! I brought lots of little snack foods, a sandwich, and not nearly enough water. I found the snacks helpful to keep me energized throughout the hours. It is pretty intensive with all the moving of stuff and talking to people all day so it is very important to stay hydrated!

I hope you found these tips helpful and will be able to rake in the cash when you give the flea market a whirl! And here’s a fun before and after of when I started (when the sun was just rising) and when I ended.

5 Flea Market Selling Tips | www.rappsodyinrooms.com

Oh wait – don’t think your town has a flea market? I would give it a quick Google search before you just breeze by the idea. I never thought our smaller town had one but then I found out that every Saturday AND Sunday there is quite the bustling flea market. So don’t give up hope and try to find a flea market next time you do a house purge!

  • Great job on getting rid of stuff and making money at the same time. I’ve been to that flea market and it was a hopping spot!ReplyCancel

    • Thanks Paula! Yeah — why did it take me so long to find that place?!ReplyCancel

  • There was an AWESOME monthly flea market in my hometown. From May to October, it was very good with several hundred people set up, everything from yard sale stuff to antique dealers. I would set up there a few times each year, arriving about 5:30am. I could usually sell $500 by noon. I had about a dozen regular customers and could pretty much call it a day after I’d seen them! I liked that I could leave when I wanted to without having to stay all day.ReplyCancel

    • There are flea markets here, but they don’t attract the type of shoppers that buy my stuff. Sigh.ReplyCancel

      • I’m sorry to hear that your local flea markets aren’t loving your things! 🙁 The just don’t appreciate good stuff apparently!ReplyCancel

    • WOW! That’s amazing!! Sounds like a flea market I would want to visit!ReplyCancel

  • That flea market is in Lafayette, Indiana, in case you’re anywhere near there. As far as I know, it’s still happening.ReplyCancel

  • Kim

    The Pickens flea mkt. Pickens,SC!!!!!Every Wednesday!!!!!!ReplyCancel