There is a whole pre dawn culture happening on the Gold Coast in the form of Car Boot Sales. They offer a great opportunity for you to clear out your excess "stuff" and put some cash back in your pocket. Taking place on regular Sat & Sun mornings throughout the month, they usually fall on the 2nd and 4th Sundays or 3rd Sunday of the month for example. Most people will have come across car boot sales, had a wander round, discovered a few bargains, enjoyed a sausage sizzle for breakfast and then carried on with their day. Becoming a stallholder is a different ball game.
If you want to sell items, the first thing to do is research your options for location and popularity of sale. The easiest way to do this is to go along to the market, at a more civilised hour, check out how busy it is and see what sort of stuff other people are selling. The learning curve here is to realise that the busier the market, the earlier you need to get there to set up in a good spot and in some cases, even get in. The Ashmore Rotary car boot sale turned away 60 cars before 5.45am on their last car boot sale in April. Cars had already begun to queue up for admission at 3am.
So where are the car boot sales held? 7 different locations can be found on the GCCC website. Ashmore City Car Park, corner Southport Nerang & Currumburra Roads, seems to be the busiest with lots of people selling before 6am, in the dark and with the car park already full to capacity. There are lots of buyers at that time too. It takes place on the 4th Sunday from 5 – 11 am. It's organised by Ashmore Rotary and costs $20 for a site. There is a recorded message on 0449 280 666 with more info or contact Karen on 5539 5000.
The 2nd Sunday of the month sale is held at Stocklands Shopping Centre in Burleigh. It runs from 5 – 10.30am although selling drops off around 10am. A site here will cost you $20 but it's busy so you should make your entry fee back pretty quickly. It's run by Kirra-Currumbin Rotary, ring Gloria on 5593 9182 for info. Cars are parked in a double space. You drive through, park and sell out of the back of your car.
Labrador Primary School, on Government Road, is on the 3rd Sunday of the month, 5.30 – 12 noon. Contact John for more info. A site will cost you $10. Elanora State High School, corner 19th Ave & Avocado Street, is on every Sunday from 5.30 – 11.00am. Dodgers Touch Football holds theirs at Cos Zanitos Park, corner Olsen Ave & Jacob Drive Labrador on the 2nd Sunday of the month, from 5 – 12 noon. Contact Tracy for information on 0416 131 844.
So what sells? Anything goes it seems. Clothes & shoes are popular sales items. DVD's are always available and attract lots of interest. Put a box at the front of your stall and people will always stop to look. Organise a table to put your sales items on, as when you look at clothes on the ground, even on a tarp, it doesn't look good and people have to crouch down to look at them. A portable hanging rail with clothes on hangers is the way to go or a table that you refold items on, after a wave of shoppers who love to rummage. Sports equipment like canoe paddles or a pilates ball are great bargains for shoppers, as generally people just want to clear out excess from their home or garage or are moving house and need to streamline what they can take with, so prices are really cheap. You will often discover bargains like kitchen appliances people have bought but have seldom used and it all happens at low cost. There are tables with new items too such as leather handbags, it's not all second hand. The second hand goods are generally good quality. It's a case of "one man's trash is another man's treasure." You can also find unusual items that I am guessing come from house clearances, like ex army war memorabilia, which you hope will find its way into a museum. There can be formal dresses and designer shoes to discover. The range is interesting and unique at each market you shop at.
Decide why you are selling. If you just want rid of "stuff" and the money is a nice bonus, then mark down your items to ridiculous prices and they will sell like hotcakes. A dollar an item, can raise $200, if you have that amount to sell. If you are selling because you need the income then get there early for a good spot, arrange your goods attractively with items priced or signs to indicate how much a thing on a table costs. Be realistic with your prices. You know what something is worth when bought new but you are not in a shop, so rather shift the items than lug it all home again.
You can spot seasoned stallholders, as they are the ones who have brought shade, warm clothes for the early start, chairs and a flask for their morning tea. Their boxes with lids, that pack away quickly into the car at the end, are a give away too. If people are doing something for regular income then you can be sure that there are people arriving to buy from them. Certain pre dawn shoppers arrive armed with torches. They hold them like CSI crime scene investigators with the torch facing down, as they sift quickly and expertly through stalls, coming the area like an SAS exercise. I'm fairly sure they are looking for things they can acquire at rock bottom prices to resell on the internet.
One note of caution - beware of shopping around the other stalls if you goal is to have a clear out, otherwise you will bring home yet more "stuff" and have spent your earnings. Buy an alarm clock too or you will miss the boat.
The car boot sale scene on the Gold Coast is certainly alive and buzzing. So whether you are selling or bargain hunting, they are worth a visit. As for all markets, check days and times, for current details, before you go.
Please note that Karen does not work at Ashmore City any more so delete reference to her in relation to Ashmore car boot sale. and secondly the Robina Rotary sale at Nerang on the first Sunday of each month has been discontinued at the instruction of the new owners of Nerang Mall. R Cooper, Ashmore Rotary
There needs to be a carboot sale register to indicate if a carboot sale has been cancelled due to weather or otherwise. Many turn up after spending long hours packing their cars to turn up to find nothing or a sign saying closed due to rain. Many I have turned up to where it would seem the weather is ok but unfortunately closed. Labrador is now notorious for this after the new organisers took over. Once was good and reliable but will end up closing due to unreliability!