Ever hosted a yard sale?

Even if your sign says 8am to Noon. Prepare for “The Earlies” - who ring your doorbell at 6am.

Besides this inconvenience, you do get the win-win of decluttering your house and making some money to take the family out to eat. 

If you hit up a local yard sale, there are nine items you shouldn't buy at a yard sale - courtesy of Bob Vila, Reader’s Digest, and Family Handyman.

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9 Items You Should NEVER Buy at a Washington Garage Sale

Garage sale, yard sale old unwanted items and utensils.

Car Seats

Second-hand stores like Goodwill will not accept them as donations. Graco reminds parents that car seats come with an expiration date. They explain that car seats wear out with use. It’s nearly impossible to know if any of the car seat’s hardware was damaged in an accident if you’re purchasing it at a garage sale. 


The idea of using someone else’s mattresses is gross. Mattresses can be expensive. So should you buy one from a garage sale? The experts say no.

Why Not? 

Bed bugs. 

They infest everywhere from five-star hotels, and luxury cruise ships to college dorms and homeless shelters. Once they’re in your home, they can wreak havoc -  so, skip the garage sale mattress. 


Experts say that even if the product is new in the box, you should still skip it. Why? The quality starts to dwindle the longer it sits. As for used cosmetics? That's a hard no. Once exposed to air, bacteria and other microbes in the makeup can multiply.


Even if the Macbook or PC looks like it’s in good shape, you don’t know how many times it’s been dropped or spilled on. You also don’t know if the internal battery is about to give up the ghost.

Running Shoes

The typical life of a pair of running shoes is 300-500 miles. When you buy used running shoes at a garage sale, you don’t know how many miles are on them. Plus, running shoes could be full of bad toenail fungus. Nope. Don’t do it. 


Like car seats, this one is all about safety. Consumer Reports explains that drop-side cribs were banned in the United States in 2011 because of the number of injuries and fatalities. It may also be difficult to tell which type of crib it is and if it’s been recalled in the past.

Used Video Games

They back up their products when you purchase used video games from a retro game retailer. You can’t say the same about games you buy at a garage sale where all sales are final.

Bike Helmets

Safety standards are constantly changing and one that you pick up at a garage sale might be able to protect your skull in an accident. Perhaps the helmet you took was involved in an accident. It can look good - but compromised.

Non-Stick Pots and Pans

Experts mention the coating wears off in about three to five years.

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If you're planning to host a yard sale or garage sale. Consider using the these tips. Planning and proper execution are necessary. Also, patience and teamwork are great. Planning ahead, advertising, and being an approachable host are beneficial. Follow the tips and you'll be a success!

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The weather is looking nice this weekend which means that many Western New Yorkers will be heading out to do one of their favorite things, hitting the yard sales around town.

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