How to Score the Ultimate Flea Market Finds
With all of the fun flea market and thrifting shows out these days, it is no wonder everyone has been bitten by the bug to go out and find some treasures! After all, you never know what sort of treasure is waiting for you, buried somewhere deep among the junk. If you ever wanted to hop in the car and spend a day on the flea market trail, but just not sure how to get started, take a peek below at tips for how to score the ultimate flea market finds! Even if you are a newbie, these tips will help you look like a pro that a seller will see coming from a mile away. Knowing how to score the ultimate flea market finds can help you snag the goodies you have been wanting
at a price people will be jealous over. Take a look!
First, you are going to need some basic supplies. Take a look at some items the pros know to carry with them when shopping. Most of these items you may already have around your home, or you can find them at your local retail store. You may find you do not need all of these items, but they are a rough guide to get you going. When digging through boxes, looking for makers marks, or just trying to get through the day these items are ideal.
Tape measure (for making sure a furniture piece will fit, checking glassware measurements)
Small flashlight (perfect for digging through boxes or dark garages)
Magnifying glass (for identifying makers marks and any damage)
Free eBay smart phone app (great for consulting for the value of items)
Packing supplies (many seller do not have paper or bubble wrap so bring your own for wrapping breakables)
Snacks (choose high protein snacks and bottled water to keep you fueled.)
How to Score the Ultimate Flea Market Finds:
1. Plan your route the night before.
Your local paper, Craigslist, and Garagesale.com are the perfect places to find flea markets in your area. You might find several being help on a Saturday morning, so you will want to plan your strategy the night before. Wasted time and gas is wasted money, so rank them in the order you want to visit and plan accordingly.
2. Be an early bird. It is a must!
This one is essential. You have to leave early! If a sale starts at 8, try to arrive 15-20 minutes early so you can be the first to start shopping. The serious shoppers are out early to snag up the best deals, so you will want to be among them. No sleeping in! Of course it will be busier and you will battle a crowd, but ultimately it is worth it as you get first dibs.
3. Bring your own shopping basket.
It is easy to get your hands full and find yourself unable to pick up anymore items. Instead, bring a reusable tote basket that you can put your finds in. This way they will stay safe while you are shopping and you can free your hands up to rummage for more. It is better than a shopping bag since the market seller won’t feel like you are concealing items, plus it is roomier.
4. Master the barter.
This one is intimidating, but essential. Flea market sellers are use to people bartering with them. In fact, they often inflate prices knowing that a buyer will try to talk them down on a price. Don’t be afraid to ask for “the best price.” Don’t point out flaws or criticize the item, but don’t gush over how much you love it either. Just simply ask “can you do better on this piece?” and get out the cash. If a seller sees you are serious and ready to pay cash right there, you are more likely to get a great deal.
5. Group items for a better price.
Do you see a box of records you want? Or perhaps there are a few dozen books or jewelry pieces you have your eye on. If so, group them up and ask the seller for a better price since you are buying in bulk. Many will be happy to liquidate a large group of items and will come down on the price for you.
6. Pay attention to condition.
Nothing is more upsetting than getting home and realizing you purchased a damage item. Be sure to inspect all pieces for chips, cracks, repairs, holes, stains, etc. Hold them up to the light, ask a friend to double check for you, and use your magnifying glass to get a closer look. If something is damaged and you still want it, just ask the seller if they saw the damage. If they missed it they may offer a better price.
7. Look high and low.
Don’t leave any stone overturned. Treasures can be tucked away in boxes, under tables, and in all sorts of nooks and crannies. Don’t just look at the items on the folding tables, but look under the tables, rummage through any bins, boxes, baskets or other vessels items are being stored in. Even if it looks like a bunch of stuff you don’t want, you never know what is hiding underneath.
As you can see, shopping flea markets can be fun and really pay off! Follow these tips and see how you can score the ultimate flea market deals and be worthy of your own t.v. show. Happy hunting!