When holding a garage sale, you have a lot to worry about: pricing, organization, setting up, sitting still, rowdy children, rowdy parents, and a whole host of other crazy and unexpected circumstances. One thing you may have to contend with is the weather. Even if you've chosen what's supposed to be the nicest weekend of the year, you may still find yourself battling with the elements to keep your garage sale alive.
Rain is the most likely troublemaker on a garage sale weekend. If there's any chance of rain, you might consider laminating your signs to prevent them from running or disintegrating. You'll also want to keep a few tarps on hand to quickly toss over your items to keep them dry. Consider keeping a portable shelter of some sort to pop up over your sale, or -- if the forecast is especially dour -- try holding your sale inside the garage instead of in your driveway. That way, the hardcore customers can still shop even as it pours down outside.
Heat is a villain you may have to face, but it's fairly easy to be prepared. If you have an extension cord and outlet within reach, set up a fan or two to blow cool air on your customers. Have complimentary cups of ice water available, and set up in such a way that you create as many shady areas as you can. As for your own safety, stick to the shade and drink lots of water yourself.
In the unlikely event that you get snow in the late spring or summer (or, more likely, that you've chosen to hold a winter yard sale), you'll likely need to call it off. Snow is a problem for your customers as well as for your sale, and if it's cold enough to snow, it's cold enough to stay indoors.
Wind can be a nasty monster and tear apart your nicely organized sale. It can also make your dollar bills and your paperwork fly away! When the breeze starts picking up, get something heavy to put on your important papers. Make sure signs on your tables are secured and well-taped, and tuck books or other paper products away in boxes. Wind may deter customers, so if you can, offer some sort of shelter from it, perhaps in the form of your house (by putting items up near it so they are protected while they shop).
Thunder and Lightning
This is another sale-closer, if it gets too close to your house. Customers will be nervous getting out of their insulated cars if the storm is nearby, and since thunder and lightening often preclude a storm, it's best to start closing up shop before the heavier weather hits.
And while you're checking out the forecast for your yard sale weekend, stop by GarageSaleCow.com too. The world's fastest-growing online garage sale community is full of wonderful resources, including the ability to advertise your sale, for no charge at all!