Finding Survival Bargains At Yard Sales and Flea Markets
Guest post by M.D. Creekmore
One of the things, I enjoy most about summer is shopping the various swap meets, flea markets and yard sales. In my area when the weather starts to warm the flea markets begin to buzz with activity. Some sellers simply set up shop at various pull-off areas along the roadside, using their car hood as a makeshift table to display their wares.
This past Saturday was absolutely beautiful, despite being a brisk 51 degrees. It was one of those days that can make a person forget about the state of the world and our own dreaded affairs. It’s been unseasonably cold here for the past few weeks, making a day reaching 51 degrees feel like the warmth of summer had arrived early.
I avoid going into town as much as possible, preferring the quietness and solitude of the land and trees that surround my small homestead. But I do need to make the trip a couple times per week to visit with my mother and a few friends as well as taking care of business matters like mailing letters and such.
This Saturday was different; I looked forward to the trip because I knew there would be at least a few people setting up yard sales and at the local flea markets. But even I was shocked at the number of people trying to sell their goods. It seemed as though every fifth house or pull-off along the way had someone hoping to make a buck.
As the economy continues to worsen, more and more people attempt to sell off their assets in hopes of getting enough cash to pay the bills for one more month. The county where I live has the highest official unemployment rate in the state at over 20%, so lots of these sales can be expected.
Judging by some of the stuff up for sale, I think they go through their house, garage and storage building looking for anything they can sell for a buck or two. You can buy most of this stuff way below retail; the trick is to get out early before all the good bargains are gone.
One of the things I love most about this type of sale is the fact that you never know what you will find. It’s like a treasure hunt and Christmas all rolled into one big adventure. While there is a lot of junk to sort through before finding anything useful, you will be surprised at quality of survival items that can be found with a little effort.
Some Things I’ve Found
- A box full of Mother Earth News magazines for $5
- Ten boxes of #6 shot – 12 gauge shotgun shells for $4 per box
- A single shot 12 gauge shotgun in like new condition for $65
- Countless how to books on gardening and preserving
- A copy of the Turner Diaries for .25 that I resold on eBay for $14
- Most of my gardening tools were bought at these sales
- A new meat grinder for $10
- Cast iron skillets for $2 each
- Hand tools
Don’t dismiss yard sales and flea markets as only having junk. Spring is only a few months away. Get out, and stop at a few of these sales. You may be surprised at the survival related items that you can find – all far below retail.
M.D. Creekmore is a full-time blogger and emergency preparedness consultant. He can be found on his survival blog where he provides free information to help others prepare for and survive disaster.
© 2011, The Survival Mom. All rights reserved.
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