7 Tips for Making Thousands of Dollars Shopping Yard Sales

Another person's junk really can be your treasure. Here's how to profit big -- as much as $20,000 a year -- as a garage sale "picker."

1. Grab a newspaper

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Yes, a newspaper. Sure, you can search for garage sales online, but the most profitable ones are advertised in the local paper.

Many of these ads are placed by older people, who tend to be less internet savvy than younger sellers, said Levitan. You’ll find the most profitable items being unloaded in established communities that have plenty of seniors and in the areas with the highest property values and incomes.

For example, Levitan once found a new $400 GoPro Hero4 camera for just $50 at a sale in a wealthy community.

But targeting the best areas will only pay off if you rise and shine. Start with 7 a.m. Saturday sales and try to be the first to arrive. Bring cash — maybe $200 or $300 — in smaller bills since the sellers may not have much change.

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