Should the HOA Open the Gates to Garage-Sale Customers?

 I recently received an email from an owner who asked if the HOA could or should have a community garage sale day and open up the gates to let people in.

There are pros and cons and ways to minimize the risks.

Pros: encourages “community” and encourages disposing of “junk” (once one gets it out for a sale, it is common to dispose of the leftovers). Perhaps coupled with a movement to clear out overstuffed garages to allow for parking of vehicles and alleviate a problem it might benefit the association.

Cons: It allows the public into the development and may cause parking, traffic, congestion and other problems. There is some liability risks.

Minimizing the risks: Have someone in charge of recording incoming license plate numbers, use signs to direct vehicles and set aside some parking for the timeslot in the guest spots, limit the number of outside vehicles in the development at any given time if parking is limited  and it is possible or feasible, use tight hours, alert owners and offer safety tips, and encourage everyone to be alert to anything suspicious. If possible, have marked security vehicles strucks do a few drive throughs.

Find out if there is a local Goodwill or other charitable agency or Haul Away company willing to come through afterward and do a free pickup.

Other ideas? Any HOA that has had a successful garage sale day?

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