Checklist Helps Mitigate Yard Sale Liability Risks


Phoenix, Oct. 17, 2012. Cooling autumn temperatures make for a perfect time for homeowners to clear clutter and make some money by having a yard sale. However, many yard sale hosts don’t realize that they could be held liable should a shopper get injured on their property. Therefore, AAA Insurance would like to offer advice to help consumers lower their yard sale liability risk.


“If somebody were to be injured on your property during a yard sale, you could be held responsible for damages or medical bills,” said Brad Oltmans, vice president of insurance for AAA Arizona. “That’s why it’s important to make sure you’re covered to reduce your risk of liability, especially in a situation of a yard sale, where strangers will be on your property.”


To help minimize homeowners’ and renters’ risks, AAA Insurance would like to offer key do’s and don’ts to remember for a successful yard sale:


Yard Sale Do’s

  • Do have homeowners or renters insurance. Standard policies generally provide at least $100,000 of liability coverage and $1,000-$5,000 in no-fault medical coverage. Should someone get injured on your property, this coverage will help protect your assets against a lawsuit.
  • Do consider additional coverage. Depending on the value of your assets, additional liability insurance or an umbrella policy, which protects assets and future income, may be worth considering.
  • Do keep pets indoors, for their safety and the safety of others. Dogs with a prior biting history or with ancestry classified as vicious are typically excluded from insurance coverage.
  • Do allow enough space in between items to prevent tripping or falls. 


Yard Sale Don’ts

  • Don’t rely on homeowners insurance if you frequently have yard sales. It may be wise to purchase a separate policy for business liability or an in-home business policy if you have yard sales several times a year. These types of policies are available from many insurance carriers, including AAA Insurance.
  • Don’t place items too close to stairs and ledges where people could fall, or where the item could fall on potential buyers.
  • Don’t keep sharp objects such as knives and scissors within reach of children.
  • Don’t sell items that should not be sold used, such as car seats, cribs or any product that has been recalled.
  • Don’t leave money sitting out. Rather, always keep your money in a secure location, and only store it in a lockbox or otherwise that is too heavy or large for a thief to carry away.


“Insurance coverage needs can vary greatly from home to home, so it’s always a good idea to consult your insurance agent to discuss possible risks before holding any event on your property,” Oltmans said.  


AAA offers a variety of insurance services, including home and commercial policies. Experienced, local agents are always available to ensure consumers receive tailored protection to fit the needs of their home and lifestyle. For more information, visit


AAA Arizona, the Arizona affiliate of AAA, provides automotive, insurance and auto travel services to more than 825,000 Arizona members. Annually, AAA’s Roadside Assistance responds to more than 450,000 calls for help on Arizona roadways. The auto club also provides insurance, travel, auto repair, discounts and financial services to AAA members. Since its founding in 1927, AAA Arizona has been a leading advocate for the safety and security of all travelers.