Frequently Asked Questions
We’ve created a list of frequently asked questions that people have about our sale. If your question isn’t answered here, please let us know! You can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Your sale is so big, you should add more days! Why don’t you?
We are committed to providing a successful selling experience for our consignors and a fun and exciting shopping experience for our shoppers. We are blessed to have a large facility to consistently use for the sale, and we have developed a loyal following of shoppers, consignors and volunteers who know to look for the sale at the corner of Ramsey and Andover every spring and fall. We can only use the Family Life Center for a limited time, however, and choose to have a shorter, more action-packed and exciting sale, rather than change our location.
2. I’ve heard about a new law that means that anyone selling children’s items will have to test for lead and phthalates. Does that mean you can’t have the sale?
No. The Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act (CPSIA) was signed into law in August of 2008. This law prohibits the sale of children’s products containing more than 600 parts per million (ppm) total lead, or containing more than 0.1% of certain specific phthalates. As written, this law required third-party testing of all children’s items (including furniture, clothing and toys) before they could be sold, whether they were new or manufactured prior to 2009. However, the Consumer Product Safety Commission issued a clarification of the law that allows us to still have a sale. We are committed to following the spirit of the law and will help consignors determine if their items are acceptable for sale.
3. Why do you recommend adult-sized wire hangers?
Your items will sell best when they’re displayed on a hanger, not in a wad on the floor! Children’s clothing is much less likely to slip off an adult-sized hanger. Wire hangers take up less rack space, and move more freely on the rack, allowing shoppers to look through MORE items EASILY.
But don’t just throw away your child-size hangers! Bundle them in groups of 10 or 20 and consign them separately!
4. How do I keep these pants from sliding off the hanger?!
Pants sell best when hanging neatly and flat, not bunched up at the bottom of a hanger. When you safety-pin your pants to the hanger, pin them to the shoulders of the hanger as shown. Don’t pin at the edge of the waist-band. Pin towards the middle of the waist-band. Now there’s no room for them to slip!
C. Pinning closer to the middle of the waistband helps to keep your item displayed neatly. Check to make sure your items won’t slip. Now your clothes are displayed neatly!
5. I have bins and bins of infant-size clothes. How many small-size items will you take?
We’ll take as many as you can tag! But keep in mind that every mom has tons of infant sizes in like-new condition. Babies just don’t wear those teeny sizes for long! So don’t be disappointed if your small sizes don’t sell well. It may be a good idea to only yellow-tag your clothing that’s size 12 months and up, and donate the rest to charity – unless you have more babies in your future!
6. Can I sell my kids’ stuffed animals?
Due to lack of space, we can only accept stuffed animals that are LICENSED characters (Disney characters, Elmo, and Care Bears, for example). Any other stuffed animals will be donated.
7. How do I tag things like sheets and sippy cups and books? What about socks and hair bows?
Crib sheets and other bedding can be placed in large ziplock bags. To avoid loss, place clear packing tape over the opening, then tape your tag to the bag using clear packing tape, or painter’s tape. Your bedding will sell even better if buyers can get a look at what the entire set looks like set up, so consider taping a picture of the items on the crib or bed you used them on.
Books can be packaged in lots by placing them in ziplock bags and taping a tag to the outside of the bag. Or you can sell your books individually, by affixing the tag using painter’s tape, which peels off easily and won’t damage the cover. You can sell sippy cups and bottles individually, or as a lot, by placing them in a ziplock bag and affixing one tag to the outside using painter’s tape or clear packing tape.
Brand new socks may sell individually, but used socks sell best in lots, packed in ziplock bags and tagged as shown. Hairbows can also be sold individually or in lots. If you had a hair bow made to match a particular outfit, consider selling the bow with the outfit. An unusual color-combination bow may not attract the buyer that an outfit WITH a bow would.
Seal the opening with clear packing tape to avoid losing pieces.
Painter’s tape is great for attaching tags. It holds securely, but peels off easily at checkout, keeping the tag intact.
8. You mention using a cable tie to tag items. What’s that?
Cable ties, also known as zip ties, can be purchased at any hardware store. While we don’t require cable ties, using a cable tie for your tag can help to avoid the damage a safety pin can sometimes do to fabric. Cable ties can’t come undone the way a safety pin can, either, so your tag is less likely to be lost.
9. Why do I have to write a description on the tag? Can’t people just see what it is?
In fact, hundreds of people will potentially be handling your item. With that many people looking through items, sometimes a tag will be accidentally pulled off. If there is a description on the tag, we’re much more likely to be able to match the tag up with your item so it can sell – and you can get the credit for it!
10. Why should I consign instead of selling at a yard sale?
Yard sales are great! But with gas prices the way they are, fewer and fewer people are driving all over town looking for the children’s items they need. Even if you advertise in the newspaper and online, there’s no way to know that the right shopper will find her way to your items! Our sale brings in HUNDREDS of shoppers, all looking for children’s toys, clothing and equipment, or maternity items. You are more likely to get a fair price for your items here than waking up at dawn and spending your morning haggling over your children’s outgrown treasures.
PLUS, as a consignor, you get to shop before the general public, so you can find great deals, too – in a comfortable climate-controlled building, not a stuffy garage!
11. Why should I consign instead of taking my items to a consignment shop?
Consignment shops typically pay consignors only 50% of what the item sells for. Plus, they are in charge of setting the price, even though they don’t know how much your item originally cost! At our consignment sale, you are the boss! You set the price, you decide whether or not to put the item on sale for 50% off, and you get 67% of what your item sells for!
Besides, a consignment shop doesn’t generate the excitement among shoppers that our sale does. When’s the last time you saw a line of shoppers eager to get into a consignment shop?
12. I’ve never been to a consignment sale before. What should I expect?
- First, expect a crowd! If you arrive at opening time on Saturday, you’ll find that there’s a line of shoppers waiting to get in. So dress for the weather!
- Next, expect to find LOTS of things that catch your eye! Bring a laundry basket or wagon with you to hold your items. Some shoppers even bring rolling garment racks! We often have boxes and baskets for shoppers to borrow, but its best to come prepared with your own.
- If you’re shopping for a particular item (a crib, for example) head to that area first. Large items go quickly! (We’ll post a floor layout soon, so you can begin your strategizing!)
- There are no fitting rooms at our sale. Measure your child/children before you come to the sale and keep those figures handy. Bring a tape measure to the sale with you, and you can check clothing measurements to ensure a good fit!
- All items are sold as-is and all sales are final. So check your items and make your final selections before you get to check-out! Anything that you don’t want goes back to the floor. This is also true for other shoppers, so check the racks one last time before you go to check-out!
13. What methods of payment do you accept?
We accept cash, checks, with ID, and now credit/debit cards.
14. Will everything be on sale during the 50%-off sale?
No. Barcoded tags will read “No Discount” if the consignor only wants the item sold for full price.
15. Do you allow shoppers to bring children and strollers to your sale?
Absolutely! We’ve even made a special effort to improve the floor plan to accommodate for LOTS of strollers! We do ask that you allow your children only to “test-drive” toys under your direct supervision. The toys at the sale are all consigned items, available for purchase, but not as entertainment for children.
16. I don’t have anything to consign, but I want to shop early. Can I do that?
Absolutely! Any volunteer that works at least five hours shops our private preview sale for volunteers, which is TWO full hours before the consignors’ preview sale. You don’t have to complete your hours before the preview sale. We need lots of volunteers on Saturday, too!
17. Do you provide childcare for volunteers?
No. And you should not bring your children with you when you volunteer, unless you have an infant that can be happily “worn” (in a sling or pouch or other baby-wearing device) for the duration of your shift. But you and a friend can volunteer together, and split the cost of a babysitter – or you can volunteer on opposite shifts and trade childcare. You can bring your children with you when you shop.
18. I was registered to consign, but I just got an email saying I had unregistered. Why did you unregister me?
We can accommodate up to 350 consignors each sale, but over the years we have found that lots of people sign up to consign but don’t ever bring their items. As the sale date approaches and consignor slots fill up, we review the consignor list to determine which registered consignors have not entered any items into the system. In order to make room for new consignors who are eager to participate in the sale, we will unregister consignors who have not entered any items. We will always send several warnings prior to unregistering any consignor, and, as long as we have not reached our capacity, you’re always welcome to re-register. Be sure to enter at least one item into the system to hold your spot!
19. What do you do with the money raised at the sale?
Of the 33% that MOPS retains of the sales price of your items, 10% is tithed to Northwood Temple Church. Another 5% is gifted to the Family Life Center. Approximately 18% pays for running the sale: equipment, materials, software, security and other personnel. The rest supports the Northwood Temple MOPS, Northwood Working Moms MOPS and MOMSNext program. We consider the sale to be part fundraiser and, part mission project. We want the sale to bless everyone who walks through the doors!
20. Is there a limit of items I can consign?
Yes. Each consignor may consign up to 200 items. We have determined that each sale we can accommodate up to 350 consignors with 200 items each. We want each consignor to consign their best items. This makes for a better sale for both consignors and shoppers!
21. Is there a minimum number of items I can consign?
Yes. We do have a minimum number of items a consignor may consign each sale. Each consignor must consign at least a total of $25 worth of items, or consign 10 individual items.