What to Buy at Garage Sales to Resell


What to Buy at Garage Sales to Resell

While some argue that rummaging through other people’s junk is a waste of time, I argue its one of the most therapeutic and profitable thing a flipper can do.   No, I don’t mean dumpster diving which is dirty, yucky and illegal.  What I’m referring to is rummaging through garage sales!

If you happen to be living in the suburbs, chances are you see a lot of garage sale signs everywhere.  Every single one is a new adventure with treasure waiting to be discovered.   An best of all, there are tens to hundreds of garage sales going on around you all the time.

In this article, I’m going to show you a few things you should be watching out for so you can profit handsomely on your next trip.  

Disney DVDs

Disney DVDs
Can you spot the Disney ones?

In the age of Netflix and Bluray, the value of DVDs have plummeted.  It is next to impossible to resell DVDs; the exception being Disney DVDs.  

Disney movies are timeless and parents of every generation show their favorites to their kids.  And because of this, Disney DVDs are sold on eBay for $5-$10 at a minimum.

Many times, you can find stacks of DVDs being sold at garage sales for only a few bucks each.  And with some negotiating, a buck or less.    And by picking these up, you’re looking at a decent profit for each one.

However, it gets better.

Disney made a decision years ago to come up with a rotation for the release of their movies.  They have a “vault” and when movies are put into the “vault” they are no longer for sale (physical or digital) for at least seven years. 

And because of this, certain movies become rare and wanted within those seven years.    If you happen to pick up one of those “vaulted” movies, you can sell them at an even higher price.

Wikipedia has an update list on which movies are in the “vault” currently.

Lastly, almost every Disney DVD had multiple releases over the years.  For example, Lion King had at least 4 releases within the last 20 years.

Just like books, collectors are looking for the first releases and thus they hold more value.  Be on the lookout for these as well.


DIY Furniture
What a difference a layer of paint and new knobs can make!

If you don’t mind putting in a little elbow grease then furniture is something you definitely want to be on the lookout for.

Furniture is often bulky and dated and thus being sold for very cheap or even being given away at times.   The previous owners just want them gone.

However as you can see in the picture above, some sanding and paint can make a HUGE difference.  And the end result is a modern and trending piece that someone else will pay much more for.

And you don’t have to limit yourself to just dressers and night stands either.

Smaller items such as lamps, vases, mason jars, mirrors, frames can be transformed into modern works of art.  And with these items, they can be sold online and shipped.  

For some inspiration, check out my Pinterest page which has thousands of ideas and tips.  


used books
Look for first editions and author signatures

It’s almost guaranteed that you will find stacks of books being sold at every garage sale you come across.  Most of them are completely worthless and can’t be flipped.

However, if you have the time, flip thru them.  Every so often, you’ll find the first edition of some famous author.  And if you do, then you’ve struck gold as they are worth big money.  

And for the rest of the books, you can check out their value by using BookScouter.  Simply enter the ISBN and see what others are offering for it.  

Tip:  If you’re finding a lot of books that are worth picking up, negotiate with the seller.  The more you buy the more you can negotiate.  This works especially well towards the end of the day when they are trying to clean up.  


Assorted Legos
Assorted Legos

Bulk Legos are worth money so don’t ignore them.  

Check out this article for more information: Selling Bulk Legos and Retired Sets For MASSIVE Profit


American Girl Dolls
American Girl Dolls

Just like DVDs and books, you’ll find kids toys sold at almost every garage sale you run into.

Next time pay closer attention to the dolls that are being sold.  Focus on the ones with older attire since generally, the attire resembles the decade they were introduced.

The reason being many of the ones from the 60s, 70s, 80s, and 90s are now collectibles and worth a lot of money.  Look for brands like Corolle, American Girl and Groovy Girls.  

Take a look at this article that showcases some dolls being sold for hundreds of thousands of dollars!

Brand-Name Clothing and Shoes

brand name clothes
Brand name clothes might be hidden

The second-hand market for clothes is absolutely mind-boggling.  Tens of billions of dollars.  So definitely pay attention!  For all of the women out there, this is where your keen eye and fashion sense really comes in handy.

Don’t fall into the trap of looking for styles that fit you or your body type.  You want to focus on styles that can easily be sold.   Look for brand name items that usually go for a lot of money and be on the lookout for clothes with tags on them.  They can be sold as new.

You’ll be surprised how often some people purchase clothe and never wear them.

Kids clothes are also worth looking at since they can be paired to make sets.  Purses and shoes are worthwhile if they are brand name items(be aware of fakes).  Men’s shoes like Jordans, regardless if they are replicas or not, are worth a lot of money.  

Electronics (Game Systems, Tablets, Phones)

video games

It’s pretty common these days to see games systems, tablets, and even phones being sold at garage sales.  

Game systems are always worth something no matter how old.  In fact, the older Gameboys, PS2s, PS1s and Ataris fetch a good amount of money.  Newer Xboxs 360/One and PS3/4 are also holding their value decently as well.   

Tip:  Make sure you are getting all the wires, chargers, and accessories that usually come with the system or you might have to spend money to get them to work.  

iPads and older phones are also worth money too, whether you can make money flipping them really depends on how much you can get them for.

You can check the value of game systems, tables, and phones on eBay or Amazon Trade-In.

In Conclusion

Garage sales are everywhere and around all year, so if you strick out simply try again.  Take your time and have some fun.  And once you net some good profit from a trip, I guarantee you’ll be itching for your next one!  Good luck :).  


9 Replies to “What to Buy at Garage Sales to Resell”

  1. I just started flipping used goods last week after seeing Gary Vee’s 2017 Flip Challenge. And I’m looking to make it a full-time work-from-home job! Loving it so far.

    Great blog post!

    1. How is it going Bo, considering doing this myself. Being disabled I can see doing this when I am up to it vs. not being able to work a job anymore.

  2. Thanks for posting this , it’s very informative and help me a lot. Now I know what to look for in the garage sale .

  3. I have dabbled in flipping for a couple of years. Thanks for the article. I am always looking for more insights. I am thinking about actually buckling down and trying to do it full time. I have wanted to work from home for a while, but am always scared I won’t make enough money to support myself and my disabled husband. I have looked into opening a resale shop, so this article helps toward that goal also.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *