Garage Sale vs Yard Sale vs Rummage Sale

Until writing this series on yard sales, I used to use the terms “garage sale” and “yard sale” interchangeably--& I didn’t understand the difference between classifying products as “lightly used” or “mint condition.” describes the difference between each type of sale—yard sale, garage sale, rummage sale—and cites itself as the authority for the definitions.  While I found that in actuality there is little difference between a “yard sale” and a “garage sale” in terms of definition, there is a difference in recognition, which matters when placing your ad. Surprisingly the term “yard sale” is not as popular as I had anticipated.

The following is a short slide show showing the popularity of these commonly used terms according to Google Trends

Rummage sale definitions:

-is a local phenomenon reserved for the Great Lakes states, particularly Wisconsin it seems (

-a usually informal sale of miscellaneous goods; especially :  a sale of donated articles conducted by a nonprofit organization (as a church or charity) to help support its programs. (Merriam-Webster)

-a sale of miscellaneous secondhand articles, typically held in order to raise money for a charity or a special event. (

Garage sale definitions:

-something you have in your garage. (

-a sale of used household or personal articles (as furniture, tools, or clothing) held on the seller's own premises. (Merriam-Webster)

-a sale of miscellaneous household goods, often held in the garage or front yard of someone’s house. (

Yard sale definition:

-something you have in your yard. (

-a garage sale. (Merriam-Webster)

-a garage sale. (

This is a bit of a random post but I thought it was worth sharing as certainly made me ponder the differences between each type of sale. Have you ever given these much thought?

PS: I've been having a bit of car troubles hence my work schedule/blog schedule has been off this past week. Hopefully this week I'll be able to stick to my preferred schedule of Friday and Sunday postings.