BLOG: Stock up with some extras at yard sales

Katherine Ranzenberger

Yard sales are great for finding stuff you don’t have, but they can also help you get back-up supplies for things you already have too.

Use yard sales to stock up on supplies for camping trips or even extra household items. (Photo via from Steve Cadman)

Let’s say you like to go camping. You don’t want to have to unpack your dishes or equipment every time you come back from the woods, so that’s why you have things like mess kits, crank flashlights and camp shovels. And what better way to stock up on all those duplicate supplies than checking out some yard sales.


BLOG: Tips to prep for yard sale shopping

As we mentioned, it’s best to keep your camping supplies and your regular-life supplies separate.

  • At the yard sale, look for: Portable dishware, foldable chairs, sealable water jugs, coolers, gently used tents, sleeping bags, tarps.

UPSTAIRS/DOWNSTAIRS: It can be a pain to have to go upstairs for everyday items, like the tape dispenser or scissors. Why not pick some of those supplies at the yard sale.

  • At the yard sale, look for: Office supplies to use at home, vacuum cleaner, brooms, hammers, screwdrivers.

SUITCASE: Some things you can’t leave home without. Having spares pre-packed in your suitcase can help make sure you never forget them.

  • At the yard sale, look for: Alarm clocks, lint rollers (unused of course), hand mirrors, full-size notepads, carrying cases of all kinds to separate your items, a good book.

IN EVERY CAR: Buying supplies for in the car is normally an impulse purchase, but you might find everything you need at a yard sale.

  • At the yard sale, look for: Window scrapers, pre-made emergency kits, jumper cables, a trunk storage case, coolers, a good book (to read in a massive traffic jam), cell phone supplies, first aid kit, window screens, no-electricity games for kids.

THE SHED: Sure, you use your shed to store your lawn mower, but wouldn’t it be easier to keep some household items there as well?

  • At the yard sale, look for: A roll of heavy duty tape, hammers, screwdrivers, tree saw, extra empty garbage can or similar container, garbage bags, rain coats, umbrellas, extension cords, light bulbs, twine, exclusively outdoor toys for kids and pets.

GROSS STUFF: You have nice stuff, and sometimes you don’t want to get that stuff dirty for one reason or another. Maybe you’re painting or expecting to get terribly muddy. Designate a storage area for items you plan to use once and then throw out.

  • At the yard sale, look for: Scissors, items to make into rags, tarps, hooded coats, gloves, broom, mops, buckets, shoes, paintbrushes.