Do You Need a Permit to Hold a Garage or Yard Sale in Maine?
Editor's note: This article was written by a Townsquare Media Northern New England contributor and may contain the individual's views, opinions or personal experiences.
Throughout the spring, summer, and fall, it's not uncommon to see signage directing you towards a garage, yard, or estate sale nearby. For some who live in Maine, thrifting at these type of sales is a weekend hobby. For those holding the sale, it's a way to make a few bucks off of items they no longer want or need. So if the mood strikes and you want to hold a garage, yard, or estate sale at your residence, can you do it? Or is a permit required from the town or city you live in?
Most Towns/Cities in Maine Require You to Get a Permit for a Garage/Yard/Estate Sale
There is no overriding state law that requires any permits to be acquired to hold a garage, yard, or estate sale on your own property. However, most of Maine's largest towns and cities each have their own permitting process allowing you to hold a sale on a specified date. The permits are generally very cheap, ranging from $3 to $15 depending on where you live.
Are There Any Other Rules Involving Garage/Yard/Estate Sales in Maine?
It depends on where you live. For instance, Brewer has an easy and cost effective permitting process, but also have a requirement that your garage, yard, or estate sales be spaced out by 45 days. That means you can't be having a blowout sale every Sunday in the month of July hoping people will come buy up all of your junk. Other cities and towns in Maine also have additional contingencies, so be sure to ask when acquiring your permit.
Could I Be Fined If I Don't Obtain a Permit?
Yes. In Lewiston, if you hold a garage, yard, or estate sale without obtaining a proper permit and it's discovered, you could face a fine of up to $1,000. There goes all the profit from those old records your grandfather held onto.