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Auctions vs Rummage Sales vs Yard Sales.

April 25, 2013

Obviously not being able to declare being a professional bargain hunter, I feel I can give my personal views on the three .  We have gone to more of each than I care to put a number on and thoroughly enjoyed all of them.

Depending on what you are looking for would likely be the most important factor.  In our case it is more the entertainment than the need to purchase a particular item,  thus making it more pleasant.

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There are a few auctioneers in the area who have an auction on a regular basis throughout the year,  except during the winter months.  One continues with the sales on a bi-weekly basis all year-long.

I go to see what they have up for auctions in box lots.  Most times boxes are filled with a variety of items and trinkets sold at the end of a bidding session for less than $2 each.  Personally I can’t resist these as going through them when we return home is much like Christmas morning.  Boxes filled with so many things that each handful is a true surprise. Somewhat like Forest Gump and his comparison of life and a box of chocolates.

As a couple of examples, we bought a huge box for a dollar,  lugged it to the car and continued filling with car with yet more boxes.  The huge box contained 2 full brand new sets of cookware,  kitchen utensils, glass ware and other treasures.  The useful items and the saving was mind-boggling.

Another windy, drizzly day I was watching a trailer full of items for a metal coffee pot to come up for sale.  While waiting many other items hit the block  None were bid on so the auctioneer kept adding to the collection with no response.  Finally my item was added but by now there was much more than I really wanted to pack in the car.  Finally almost begging the auctioneer looked directly at me and pleaded, ” please offer a bid,  a dollar”.  I believed that if I did certainly the bidding would take off.  No such luck,  after 3 times asking he said “sold for a dollar to (my number)”.  Now I had a real problem,  pack all this stuff in the car and then remove it again at home.  Well several boxes wasn’t so bad.   Actually the few boxes turned into a whole wagon full of boxes and other items including a pair of crutches.  I honestly was not aware that my bid was on the entire trailer full.

We managed to get it all into the car which thankfully is a van and took it home.   there were numerous items, including tools in the boxes which would be quite useful.  A basement wall lined with boxes which were of no use to us,  was later taken to a local arena for their bi-yearly rummage sale.

Auctions are an experience for many,  a way to downsize and a great way to settle unwanted items from an estate.  Sometimes there is a nice profit but other times it is mind-boggling at the mere pittance made during such a sale.  It’s a gamble at best from both sides of the auction table.

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Then comes the rummage sales.  Churches are probably the most well-known for their sales,  everything donated from area residents.  Something for everyone is no falsehood.  If you can’t find what you are looking for at a rummage sale then you really don’t need it.   Most of these sales we have gone to have everything you can possibly imagine from fresh food dishes to undies,  tools to wall hangings and computers to  children’s books and toys.

The rummage sale we usually frequent has prices any one can live with.  All money collected is then turned over to the local hospital auxiliary and is then used to purchase hospital equipment.  A win, win situation from beginning to end.  I fully expect all the church run rummage sales also use their profit for needed items to maintain the church and groups within.

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Finally on my list comes the yard sales.  These are not my favourite ways to spend time.  You could walk a mile and not see a thing that interests you,  but I’m sure each item up for sale will gain interest from someone.  I’m always amazed at the folks who have items priced just a few cents less than stores do.  Is this wishful thinking or perhaps they really didn’t want to part with the items.  I don’t know the why’s or how comes,  I just know that they don’t appeal to me.  I wish all persons conducting all varieties of sales,  all the best.  I really do hope that they all reach their goal.

What I do know for sure is that to me – these sales add up to good weather.  Bring them on.  I’m also hoping that along the routes to the west coast we will at some point come upon one of these sales.  Yes, fishing, auctions and rummage sales could keep me contented.

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