It can be really difficult to handle both the death of a loved one and all of their belongings but it’s often the case that these two things go hand in hand. Even if your family member has just moved from their home into an assisted living facility it can be hard to decide what should happen with all their stuff, especially if there is a lot of it.
The LA Times recently reported that on average we have over 300,000 separate articles in our house at any given time and if your loved one was a collector or never got rid of anything, you could be looking at an overwhelming project. Luckily, estate sale professionals know exactly how to handle these situations and can help you deal with all the extra stuff you may find in your possession.
An estate sale is more than just selling your things, there is an entire process to go through for both before and after the sale. Estate sale professionals are great at handling large estates or a plethora of things quickly and they can make sure that you get the fair price for all of your items because most of them are certified appraisers.
In general, the first step is to do a walk through with the professional. This will give them a chance to see all the items, appraise everything, and help you decide what to sell and how to sell it. Some pros will do on-site sales, hold auctions, sell items online, or even take them into their own consignment shops.
Once they have priced items, they will come in and set things up for the sale. You can see how Aether Estate Sales prices their items and arranges their sites for sale day with pictures on their website. Most professionals will make sure everything is clean and orderly so sales can go quickly and shoppers can easily get to all the items.
On the day of the sale, estate sale staff will make sure they are on hand to handle all transactions, questions, security, and to run the auction if there is one. You don’t have have to be on site during the sale but it is up to you whether you want to be there or not. The estate pros will do their best to sell as many items as possible and because most of them have been doing this for awhile and know the area, they will have priced items to fit the budget of many shoppers. In fact, Prestige Estate Services talks about proper pricing on their blog.
After the sale is complete and everything that is going to sell is gone, you can decide what to do with the rest of the items. Whether you want to donate them to charity or try to sell them online, the estate sales pro can make recommendations based on what is left. They will also share the sales total with you and the executor of the will and finally send you a check, minus their fees and commission, in a timely manner.
This can vary based on the professional and the amount of stuff you have to sell. They might charge you by the hour to do a walk-through and to price all the items so the more stuff you have the more it might cost but other companies will just charge a flat fee for walk-throughs, pricing, set-up, and take down. They will also take a percentage of the sales, usually around 35%, but you can talk about that and agree on the proper amount.
Your loved one's family attorney or even your own attorney can help you locate a good estate sale company but you can also ask for suggestions from friends and family. You can look online at places like the Better Business Bureau of Naples but make sure when you read user reviews you only look at ones who have used the estate sale services and haven’t just shopped at an estate sale. You will also want to choose companies that have been properly certified to appraise and make sure you go over any contract thoroughly.
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