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Spring is finally here in Michigan! We know what that means: crocuses, daffodils, and yard and garage sale signs are popping up all over. If you're holding a sale yourself, we have some important information for you.

After all the sorting and pricing is complete, the hard work of a garage or yard sale is over, right?  Maybe not, since hosting a sale may require you to consider some legal issues, too. The Michigan Attorney General has some helpful yard sale tips. Here are some other things to think about as you scour your home for items to sell.

Are Your Items Safe?

Most people probably don't know that it is illegal to sell recalled products. As the seller, you are obligated to check whether any items you offer for sale have been recalled, especially children's items such as car seats, cribs, playpens, or highchairs. You can check the Consumer Product Safety's Commission's website for the most current recall list.

Local and Municipal Ordinances

Even if the items you're selling haven't been recalled, there are other details to consider before your sale. For example, many Michigan cities require a permit (which may mean permit fees) before you hold a yard or garage sale. Other restrictions may involve:

  • How many sales you can have in one year
  • Duration of each sale
  • Where the sale items can be displayed.


In Michigan, most yard sales are considered "casual" or "isolated" sales, so they are not subject to state sales tax. However, if you are lucky enough to sell something for more than you paid for it, you may want to ask your accountant about income or capital gains taxes.

Questions? Contact us for a free consultation.