Houston, We Have a Problem: City Sues Disabled Couple for Hosting Too Many Garage Sales

One man’s trash is another man’s treasure. That’s especially true when you’re hitting up a garage sale. Not only do the sales provide customers with the perfect way to find inexpensive furniture or dishes, they’re also eco-friendly. Instead of buying new things, old, gently used items that have been upcycled can be toted home. But for one elderly Houston couple, earning an income through their sales has landed them in hot water. The city is suing to make the garage sales stop.
The couple has been hosting the sales on a daily basis to supplement their income. Jorge is blind in both eyes and only gets a meager disability check. According to the city of Houston website, garage sales aren’t actually regulated, and there is no “garage sale permit.” However, Houston stipulates that “residents are allowed to have only two such sales within a 12-month period. Any more than two and the resident is recognized as having a business and must obtain a sales-tax permit from the state.”