Car Boot Sale vs Garage Sale - Money in, Crap Out

>> Friday, June 10, 2011


It has  been ages since my last post. I have been busy. Many things have happened since my last post. Earthquake in Japan, air strike on Libya by NATO  and on the  local scene explicit sex videos  circulated on the internet   allegedly featuring the  opposition leader, Anwar  Ibrahim. Life goes on. Sometimes  truth  is   simple and crystal clear and  there is no conspiracy, but many  people do not see that. People see what they want to see or hear want they want to hear. I rest my case. 

For today, I want to write  about something that interested me many  years ago. When I was a student   in UK, car boot sales  were my frequent visits rather than other places during the weekends. I was in strict budget and a cheapskate, car boot sales seemed the right place for me  to find  winter clothes and  cooking utensils and other stuff. I remember I bought black and white television  at car boot sales for 10 pounds. It functioned well until my graduation  day. Though the  picture was black and white, I did not complain much.  You can find many stuff at car boots sales like books, household items, clothes, furniture, sometimes collectibles  items or antiques.

Car boot sales are  popular in UK and for those who are not familiar, the name comes  from the way goods are sold from a car 's boot or trunk. A large  group of people  with goods in the trunk   of their cars gathered at open space, then   unpacked their goods onto folding table or on the ground  and start  making sale . You can say car boot sale is more a British thing and meanwhile in USA you can find garage sale or yard sale.

What is the difference between the two? It is the same, selling used items or sometimes crap  that might  have been thrown away, new or like new stuff but the difference is the place. Garage sales take place  at residential area or individual  property  meanwhile car boot sales normally held at open space like  carparks or  grassed fields or community open  space.   Most of the property  houses in the  US have bigger  yard compare to any other countries  in the world and   have a garage attached to their property or part of the building except those in  metropilitan area.   You can find car porch or covered porch in many properties  in Malaysia or UK but not a  garage.  In addition, many of the houses in the US have basements, where they functioned as utility space to put water heater, furnace, air-conditioning system, etc. The built up areas are normally half of the ground floor and some  as  big as the ground floor. The extra large  spaces are used as storage or turned into media room, studio or play room.  US with 50 states, is the third biggest  country in the world after Russia and Canada and just a bit smaller than Europe. Space and land  are abundance with only  over 300  million people in population. Do not blame them. Everthing is larger and bigger. Bigger  yard and bigger built-up  houses  with garage.This is one of the reason probably garage sale  is popular in the USA.They have  more spaces  to put  stuff and also they have space to to throw unwanted stuff on display  at  their  yard  or garage for sale. There are also neighborhood or community garage sale where dozens of families  participating   in the event.

I have visited few residential houses in Rockford, Illinois,  one of them have a backyard almost the size of 2 tennis courts. I  went to  garage sales there too and it was quite fun. I bought few items. During my short visit, I noticed  many houses were in  foreclosure. One of them was priced below US10,000. To date,  million of homes in the US  have been lost to foreclosure. Foreclosure happens when the owner fails to pay the mortgage payment and the bank repossess the property  and put it up for sale. There are tons of websites in the internet  with  foreclosed property listings.When there are many foreclosed homes  in the neighhborhood, it is not good for that area, because  crime rate can go high and the homes become eyesores. It can drag down the property value of other homes in the neighborhood.

Now you can find  websites that listed the  location and place where garage sales  take place so it is quite convenient and you can plan your garage sale visits. You  can also find car boot sales listing on the internet.  Some people buy and hunt  stuff on garage  or car boot sales and sell  them on ebay.

So if you  plan to travel to UK or USA, visiting   friends or on vacation, find some time to go to car boot sale or garage sale. You might find treasure  or something that you like.

p/s: I have no choice but to buy another printer this month or next month, insyallah, Rome will be the next stop. Stay tuned

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