For many people, it’s difficult to go through the things of a loved one after they have died because those items hold sentimental value. It can also be difficult because there might be a lot of stuff to go through and a huge project is not what you want to deal with while you are grieving.
Many of us have a lot of stuff (around 300,000 separate items according to the LA Times) and older people can have even more if they were collectors, didn’t throw things away, or had little mobility to sort through their things. It can be overwhelming to try and sift through everything to make sure you don’t get rid of anything valuable and this is where an estate sale professional can be a big help. They can handle everything for you so you don’t have to worry about it.
An estate sale doesn’t just happen on its own and there is more to it than putting things out on a table to be sold. There is a process and companies like Sell My Stuff Canada will go over everything with you so you know exactly what will happen. Remember, these are professionals who can handle a large volume of things much faster and easier and they are also certified appraisers so they will make sure you get the most money for all the items.
The first step is to do a consultation or walk-through and take a look at all the items. Before this step, make sure you have removed anything that you want to keep. The estate professional will start to look at the items and pricing them based on their value and if they have been around long enough, they will know the general budget of the shoppers in the area. This will help them to price items to sell.
They will also handle the cleaning and arranging of all the items and will stage the house or site of the sale so it is appealing to shoppers. They will take care of all the advertising too so that on the day of the sale you have a good amount of shoppers.
Once the day of the sale arrives, they will handle the entire process. If there are items to bid on they will run the auction, and they will take care of transactions, security, and any questions the shoppers might have. You don’t have to be on site the day of the sale if you would prefer to stay away but you are more than welcome to be there.
Finally, most estate professionals will take care of the remaining items by donating them to charity or recommending another course of action. They will clean up the house and make sure it looks neat and tidy as well as total up the sales and let you and the executor of the will the final sum. After a few days, they will send you the check minus their fees and commission.
Depending on how many items you have to sell, the condition of the house, and other factors initial fees can be different for everyone. Some professionals will charge by the hour for walk-throughs, consultations, and pricing while others will set a flat fee. Some might even offer the initial consultation for free. They will also take a part of the total sales as their commission and this is usually in the range of 30 to 35% but you can agree on a number before the actual sale.
You can get recommendations from friends and neighbors or even talk to a family attorney to see if they have a referral. Sites like the Better Business Bureau of Toronto are good because they have reviews, just make sure you only take reviews of the services of each company into consideration not the reviews of people who have only been to their sales. It’s also a good idea to make sure they are a part of either the American or the International Society of Appraisers and that you come to an agreement on fees and commission before you sign a contract.
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