Before I had Fox, I decided that the best way to get some great toys and baby stuff would be buy them second hand. We have been living on a student budget for the past 5 1/2 years, so buying all new things was out of the question.
We had generous friends and a work baby shower that gave us a lot of the essentials for Fox, but I still thought it would be great to find a few toys for when he got a little older (and I was just excited to get some baby stuff).
I found out that a friend from church was a big garage sale-er and the next time she went, I tagged along. She is really amazing. She goes garage sale-ing in October, and gets all her Christmas gifts for her kids (she has 5), and is a super savvy buyer.
Here are a few things I learned from her and a few subsequent garage sales:
1. Don't be afraid to walk away without buying anything (even if you are friends with the person selling).
2. If you think the price is to high, ask for a lower price. The worst thing they can say is no, and if you don't think it is worth it, walk away.
3. Go with a specific list in mind, but be open to other items that might be useful.
4. Be prepared to drive around a lot, and get out a lot (I would recommend that you don't take little kids on this outing).
5. Look for items you might need in the future (baby items, Christmas gifts, etc).
6. With the previous point in mind, don't just buy stuff because it is cheap! Get things that will actually benefit your life.
7. Start early. The best stuff goes to those who get there first. If you can go at 7AM, you get first pickings.
I love garage sales because not only do you get some great stuff on the cheap, but it is also a great way to get to know people in your community better. It is a wonderful way to buy second hand, and do a good thing for the environment.
Do you have an pearls of garage sale wisdom to share? Let me know in the comments!