Thursday, February 26, 2015

The 5 BEST Tips for the Flea Market

How to be an instant
when going to the Flea Market

1. If you want it, GET IT!  Do NOT hesitate.

 Sometimes it can be difficult to decide whether or not
you are going to make a purchase.
Most flea markets have so many things,
it can be a bit overwhelming.

Occasionally, we like something but we may decide to
"think it over".
Bad idea.
Often, when we decide to go back, the item is GONE.
Many of us have those tales of remorse:
"...the one that got away".

Instead, if the price is right, get it.
Later, if you decide against the item,
you can always resell it. 

A few years ago, I was debating on a pair of chairs.
Within seconds of telling the vendor I would take them,
another woman came up to the vendor
to say she wanted to buy them.
Whew!  What a close call!
Then, as I carried them to my car,
about a dozen people complimented
me on my "great" chairs.
Lesson learned.

2.  Bring cash - especially small bills.
(And, keep it safe...!)

Cash gives you better buying power.
Smaller bills allow you to negotiate with vendors.
All in all, cash is best for flea markets.

Be smart.  Be safe.
Divide your cash up and store it in two or three places.
Be on your guard for pick pockets
and store your cash safely.
I like to use a small cross-body purse,
so that my cash is in front and close to me.
Then, I hide some of my cash in another place.

3. Look carefully.
The treasures are often hidden.

Let's be honest.  Some flea market stalls look
like they are filled with pure junk.
Seriously, some of the items look like
they belong in the trash.
(I can't believe the vendor even took
the effort to pack it up and display it.)

And yet...
There are times when the best treasures
are hidden among the stuff within these stalls of trash.

 Have "eagle eyes".
Take your time.
Look carefully.
It may be worth your while... 
 4. Be personally prepared.
You want to have a great day.
The only way that is going to happen,
is if you are prepared and comfortable.

A.  Wear comfortable shoes!

 You will be walking - a lot!
Wear comfy shoes (or live to regret it).
I love wearing my UGG boots to the flea market.
It is usually cold in the morning, and my UGGs keep
my tootsies toastie.
Plus, they are so soft!
(I know some blogs say UGGs are "out" -
but not in California.  They are still very popular,
especially in beach communities).

B.  Wear layers. 

 Start with a tank or soft tee.
Add long sleeve shirt, sweatshirt, or cozy sweater.
If necessary, add a jacket or coat.
I, personally, love to wear a pashmina scarf:
soft, warm, and comforting.
I also like to carry a cute bag.
Hey, look stylish - but dress for the treasure hunt!

C. Bring water (and a healthy snack).

Flea markets generally have food and beverages for sale.
However, the choices may not always be "the best".
Bringing some water
and a granola bar or bag of nuts. Healthy is better!

D. Bring a rolling cart, large tote, and/or bags. 

On my recent foray to the flea market,
I pulled a rookie move and forgot to bring
anything to carry my items.
The "pros" have their rolling carts.
Large, sturdy totes are also a good idea
(for small and/or fragile items).

I love "Flea Market Flip" on HGTV.

I love "I Brake for Yard Sales".

In other words, I love Lara Spencer!
One thing I have learned from Lara:
don't be afraid to negotiate.
I negotiated (for the first time) with vendors
the last time I visited the flea market.
I saved a bundle.

Tip: Mind you MANNERS!
There are some offers that are just rude.

A few months ago, I had a yard sale.
My son sold our "like new" couch for $30 (WHAT?!?!).
The woman then tried to offer me $10.
I wanted to slap her.
Well, not really - but I was insulted beyond belief!
When you are negotiating, remember that you
are dealing with a human being with feelings.
Be courteous.

There you go... 
Now you're a Flea PRO.

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