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Schuette's new consumer newsletter answers common garage sale questions

Posted at 2:38 PM, Jul 11, 2017
and last updated 2017-07-11 14:38:34-04

Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette has released a new consumer education newsletter that answers many common questions Michigan residents may have when hosting or visiting a garage sale this summer.

“Garage sales are very common across the state, especially in the warmer summer months,” said Schuette. “Many residents have questions such as ‘Do I need to pay taxes on what I am selling or purchasing?’ or ‘Is a permit required?’ This newsletter looks to answer those frequently asked questions and more, so all Michigan residents can have a smooth garage sale experience.”

The newsletter also offers tips for both garage sale sellers and buyers. Some of the tips outlined in the newsletter include:

Consumer Protection Law:

• The Federal Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act applies to both primary sellers and resellers, which include those hosting a garage sale.

• It is illegal to sell recalled items, so whether you are a buyer or seller, make sure to search the recall list on the U.S. Consumer Protection Safety Commission website when preparing for a yard sale.

Do You Need a Permit?

• Many local municipalities require a permit to hold a garage sale, so it is important to check for the proper requirements before scheduling a garage sale.

o Some communities also limit the number of garage sales that can be held a year, the duration of the sale, or where items can be located on the property.

Do You Need to Pay Taxes?

• Income Tax: Unless an individual holds yards sales regularly or as a business, income tax is not required to be reported. Losses are not deductible either.

• Sales Tax: Yard sales are considered “isolated” sales, so products being sold are not subject to sales tax.