South Miami considers creation of citywide garage sale event

The South Miami City Commission is considering creating a citywide garage sale day, waiving the $20 fee for participants.

Though the official day would only be once per year, residents would be able to hold sales on other days, but would have to pay the fee.

South Miami Mayor Philip Stoddard said that if the ordinance passes, the city would coordinate with South Miami Neighbors, the volunteer organization that came up with the plan, to determine the best day for the event.

“We can help people reuse the objects they purchase,” he said. “It’s better to reuse than to buy new.”

Holly Zickler, a board member of South Miami Neighbors, believes this would bring the community closer. “We see the citywide sale as a day when many South Miami residents [can] participate in hosting their own garage sale or coordinate with a few neighbors to host one on their street,” said Zickler. “We feel that building social relationships is vital to the health of our community and we see the garage sale event as a great community-building event.”

Miami-Dade County residents do not need a permit to hold a garage sale, but municipalities can implement their own fees. For instance, Miami Shores also requires a fee and restricts residents to only one garage sale per year. Pinecrest, however, does not require a fee.

Ronald Guillen, a South Miami resident who held a garage sale attended by 100 people earlier this month, said it would be nice to have the fee waived.

“I think we would sell more if something like this would happen,” said Guillen.

According to the South Miami Parks and Recreation Department, which oversees garage sale permits, the city had 51 garage sales from October 2018 to September 2019. The city has collected $1,020 from fees.

Stacey Margulies, a Pinecrest resident who recently hosted a garage sale, was surprised to learn that South Miami had a fee.

“I think it’s a great idea,” Margulies said about the fee waiver. “I can’t believe they charge that amount just to hold a garage sale.”

A vote on the proposal is scheduled for Dec. 3.

Pablo Alvarez, a Cuban and Puerto Rican American, has interest in writing anything and everything regarding politics, the environment, community stories and much more. He wants to write groundbreaking stories that matter to readers and have an impact on them.