Dallas Estate Sales

Dealing with a loved one’s belongings after they move or die can be surprisingly difficult. That’s because those possessions carry emotional weight with people who are grieving and who may disagree over who gets what. It’s also because most of us own a lot of things.

The LA Times reported in 2014 that the average US home contains 300,000 separate items. If your loved one was a collector or liked to keep odd items “just in case,” there’s likely even more stuff that must be sorted and sold or given away. When there’s too much stuff, especially if you’re not sure what things are worth, a reputable estate sale company can help. All you have to do is take the items out of the home that you and your family want to keep. The company handles the rest.

Estate sale services before, during, and after the sale

Estate sale professionals specialize in selling people’s possessions for the highest possible price, and they can handle even a large home much faster than you can. Futures Past Estate Appraisal & Liquidation spells out its process online. In general, things begin with a walk-through of the home, followed by a detailed appraisal and pricing of items worth selling. Many estate liquidators are certified appraisers, and those who’ve been in business in Dallas for many years know local buyers’ preferences and budgets.

Estate sale pros also clean and arrange sale items in appealing displays, advertise the sale and host sale previews. To show you how much work goes into this, Ruth Taylor Estate Sales shows before and after pictures of estates it’s handled.

On sale day (or days), the estate sale staff help shoppers, provide security, handle transactions, and may auction selected items. You can be on site during the sale to watch the proceedings or you may choose to stay away while your loved one’s items are sold.

After the sale, the company can recommend local charities to pick up remaining items. They also share sale information with the executor of your loved one’s will and with you. Finally, the company gives the estate a check for the proceeds of the sale (minus commissions and fees), usually within a few days.

What it costs to hire estate sale professionals

You may pay by the hour for a walk-through and evaluation, to see if the items are valuable enough to merit hiring an estate liquidator. Some local estate liquidators offer this first step for free. Sale fees vary by company but you should expect to pay at least 35% of the total sale proceeds to your estate sale team. For homes that are heavily cluttered or need major cleaning before the sale, expect to pay more. If you want to see an estate sale services contract, Janelle Stone Estate Sales posts its service agreement online.

Finding an estate sale company in Dallas

Ask your loved one’s family attorney or yours for local recommendations. You can also check reviews online (be sure they’re from families who’ve used their sale services, not from shoppers who’ve attended their sales). The Better Business Bureau of Dallas and Northeast Texas lists 8 BBB-accredited estate sale companies. Look for companies with American Society of Appraisers or International Society of Appraisers certification. Feel free to ask for references, and interview more than one company. Finally, get a written contract that details the process, fees, and time frame for the sale.


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