Minnesota Garage Sale CultureGarage sales are as Minnesotan as hotdish. Minnesotans are traditionally thrifty, homely, neighborly, and environmentally conscious, and the garage or yard sale fits our nature well.
Twin Cities residents love shopping at garage sales as much as they love holding them. Necessary items like children's clothes and toys are classic yard sale best buys, as well as books, kitchen wares, garden items, and furniture, saving a significant amount over their new price.
The popularity of garage sales affects local thrift stores. Twin Cities' thrift stores are not as well stocked as those in other comparable cities. Yard sale holders who donate their unsold items to a local thrift store make money and support a local non-profit organization too.
When are Garage Sales Held in Minneapolis and St. Paul?Garage sales start as soon as the weekends start to be reliably above freezing, usually late April, and continue into October.
Friday and Saturday are the most popular days for yard sales and garage sales, with Sunday being a traditionally quiet day for garage sale shopping. Sales usually only extend into Sunday if the seller has a lot of items to sell.
Where to Find Garage Sales and Yard Sales (Or Where To Advertise Your Yard Sale)Listings of garage sales, moving sales, and yard sales are published in local newspapers and online. Most garage sales are listed on craigslist, or in newspapers.
- Minneapolis/St. Paul craigslist. Free to post adverts.
- Pioneer Press classified ads (mostly St. Paul and eastern suburbs). Fee to place an advert.
- Star Tribune classified ads (mostly Minneapolis and western suburbs). Fee to place an advert
Craigslist is free, but many garage sale visitors check the newspaper on Saturday morning to plan their day of garage sale shopping, so it can be worth the money to place an advert in the newspaper, especially if you and some of your neighbors are holding a sale on the same day.
Multi-Family Garage Sales, Block Sales, Neighborhood SalesAnd speaking of block sales, and neighborhood sales... Neighborhood sales are very popular, to the point where whole cities hold garage sales over one weekend. Bloomington's city-wide garage sale is possibly the largest in the metro area, held in late May.
Just outside the Metro area, cities around Lake Pepin on the Mississippi River all take part in the 100-mile Garage Sale in early May.
The Star Tribune publishes a neighborhood garage sale calendar in late April with listings covering the whole metro area, in print and online.
Do I Need a License To Have a Garage Sale in Minneapolis/St. Paul?Probably not. Ordinance for yard sales varies between cities.
In Minneapolis, you don't need a license if you are selling your own property from your own residence that you own or rent. The sale can't last longer than 72 hours, and you can only have two sales in twelve months. You can't sell items purchased for resale, or items consigned for resale. You have to do the selling yourself, you can't employ someone to hold the sale.
In St. Paul you don't need a license if you are selling your own property from your own residence that you own or you rent. The sale can't last longer than 72 hours, and you can only have three sales in one calendar year. You can't sell items purchased for resale, or items consigned for resale.
To thieves, garage sales are an excellent way to check out what you have in your home that they might want, as well as the temptation for opportunistic thieves to take your sale items, money or other property in your garage or home. Make life harder for thieves with these crime prevention tips from the City of Minneapolis Police Department.