Guest blogger Pablo Solomon shares his yard sale shopping experiences with us today:
Although I am now an internationally recognized artist living the good life, I grew up in some of the poorest neighborhoods in Houston. We were a multi-cultural home in which several languages were spoken because my father’s family was run out of several countries due to religious and political oppression before finding freedom and opportunity in the USA. My parents taught me to work hard, get an education and to save in a disciplined manner. They also taught me how to barter–we traded stuff for stuff, stuff for work, work for work. We also sold anything and everything that we could. Things we got off the trash, things we bought in yard sales and things that we just did not want or need anymore. So I probably know as much about buying and selling at yard sales as anyone alive.
Yard Sale Shopping–Bad Experiences–Good Advice
The basic rule of yard sale shopping is “buyer beware” and just as important “buyer keep your mouth shut and buy the find of the century as fast as you can”.
In other words–when you buy, you buy as is and you must use your own judgment as to what the item really is and what it is really worth. There are times that you will pay way too much. There are times when what you think ( or was told ) is an antique is a cheap knock-off. Just enjoy the good deals and chalk the bad ones up to experience. It is all part of the same continuum.
On the other hand. It is the seller’s responsibility to know what he/she has and what it is worth. I once bought a very valuable painting for 50 cents. I gave the seller two quarters and left with my treasure. It is not your duty to inform the seller that his/her item is either valuable nor is it your job to tell him/her that the item is crap. Either buy or don’t buy–it is that simple.
The seller is giving no guarantees and is not obligated to give you your money back–even if he/she lied like a demon. On the other hand, I have had sellers stupid enough to look me up literally years later and complain that they sold something too cheap. Yard sales are great opportunities to get good stuff cheap and also to be taken to the cleaners. It is your job to educate yourself–not to be a cry baby.
About Pablo Solomon
Pablo Solomon is an Artist & Designer and is an internationally recognized artist and designer known primarily for his drawings and sculptures of dancers as well as for his soothing and environmentally friendly designs. His work can be viewed at http://www.pablosolomon.com. Pablo has been featured in books, magazines, newspapers, radio, TV and film. Currently he lives and works with his wife Beverly on their historic 1856 ranch north of Austin, Texas. Before acting as his full time muse and business manager, Beverly was a model and then in sales and marketing for Diane von Furstenberg, Revlon and Ralph Lauren.
Recognition for Environmental work and design– Last year he was featured in an article by Mark Anderson for National Geographic about my part in the first Earth Day.
Recently his design work has also gotten a lot of press. Bunny Wong featured me as one of 3 top American designers in her article on how to achieve that hotel sleek and serene look in your home for Woman’s Day and AOL.