Going through someone’s belongings is always difficult for families following a loss. Getting rid of things is hard and stressful while you are mourning.
LA Times stated the average person possesses about 300,000 things. If your loved one was a collector or did not purge items on a regular basis, you may have more things to handle. Hiring an estate sales company will lessen your stress as they do all the work for you. You just need to decide what you and your family want, and the company takes it from there. They will help you sort, evaluate, and donate leftover items.
It’s important not to get rid of anything before you meet with an estate sale company. There may be some valuable items that you may think are not worth much. An estate sales professional will help you get the most money for your things in a shorter amount of time than it would take you to organize a sale. Caring Transitions posted an article on why you should hire an estate sales company.
First, you will meet with the estate sales company for a consultation to review items. The company will then sort, set-up, display, and price items for the sale. They will complete advertising and contact their sources to ensure the largest turnout possible. Preparing for a sale takes about 5-10 days. The estate sale usually lasts three days.
During your sale, the estate sale staff will be on hand to help shoppers, handle transactions, and offer security. They may auction off larger items. Most estate sales companies can process credit card payments to increase sales. You can attend the sale, but not everyone likes to witness strangers going through their loved one’s things.
After the sale, the company can assist you with donations to charities of your choice. They can help with boxing up and get receipts.
The company provides a written statement itemizing your sale along with a check for the proceeds of the sale, typically few days after the sale.
Some companies do charge for the initial evaluation while others do not charge. Sale fees do vary by company, but the average is around 35-40 percent of the sale proceeds. If your loved one’s home has more than the average number of items and needs a lot of cleaning, the prices may be higher. Some companies may charge for the cleaning up of remaining items.
The best place to start is to ask for referrals from your lawyer or friends who have recently used this service. Online reviews also provide insight but make sure the reviewer hired the service and was not just a shopper. El Paso Plus posted an article on questions to ask estate sales companies.
Estatesales.net lists various companies with contact information. When reviewing estate sales companies, look for a company that has either the American Society of Appraisers or International Society of Appraisers Certification. You should interview more than one company. Ask for a written contract with all fees outlined, the sale process, and the time frame.
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