Helpful Estate Sale TipsFirst and foremost, it is crucial to understand this is very different from a garage sale. While a successful yard sale functions similarly, it really isn’t the same thing. The biggest difference is you won’t be carting things out of the house and out into the driveway. In an estate sale, you actually leave the items inside and let people walk through the house to browse and buy. While some estate sales do stage outside, if you’re going to sell the home, it’s a good idea to host it inside.
It’s a situation many of us will face one day, if we haven’t already: A relative dies or goes into a nursing home, leaving the survivors to figure out what to do with all the nice things left behind. Or, before you arrive at that point, you or your parents may decide to dispose of most of their belongings and downsize in a big way. Most people expect to see some financial return when they sell off belongings they’ve accumulated over a lifetime, but not all will. The challenge is figuring out which belongings have value and where to sell them. —US News and World ReportNow, doing so might require a complete basement cleanout or at least a serious cleaning crusade, but it does help to generate interest. At the very least, it gives people a chance to see the home in-person and that might be enough to spread the word. If you’re not comfortable doing this on your own, you can always try an estate sale coordinator, someone who does this often. But, if you are able to go the DIY route, use the following helpful estate sale tips:
- Store away items not for sale. As stated above, estate sales are generally held inside the home. So, be sure to store things you don’t intend to sell out-of-sight. If you neglect to do this, you might unwittingly sell something you really wanted to keep.
- Declutter, disinfect, and depersonalize. Now, it’s time to really get down to business and declutter, disinfect, and depersonalize. This is the same advice for selling a house and/or for hosting an open house. The reason for these steps is they are totally necessary. You want a decluttered space, that’s clean and without any personal items.
- Stage items on tables and in open cabinets. Place items you are selling on tables, in open cabinets, and on countertops. These kinds of sales are generally confined to rooms like the living room, family room, den, and kitchen. Be sure to have a price list ready-to-go and consider placing price tags on items.
- Get a few people to help out during the sale. While you might believe it only takes a single person to host an estate sale, this usually isn’t the case. So, ask a couple or a few people for help and place point-of-sale stations near the entrance and near the exit for buyers’ convenience.