||How do I arrange for an estate sale?
Call 941-746-2100 or email to Julie1944@AOL.com to make an appointment for a home visit.
Is there a charge for the visit?
What happens during the home visit?
We look at and discuss the items you wish to sell. I make a determination if there is enough for a successful sale and if there are any problems relating to the location of the residence.
Can you give me an estimate of what the sale will bring?
Yes I can, unless there are so many items which are yet undetermined as to whether they will be sold.
How do you get ready for the sale?
I have a staff of four to six workers who set up the sale. We bring tables, cover them with cloths, and arrange the items in the cupboards and cabinets on tables in an attractive, orderly manner. We empty every drawer, closet, and cabinet. When properly displayed, we price every item.
Where do you advertise?
In the local weekly Shopping Guide, the local daily paper, and I have an e-mail list of about 300. In some locations we also use other weekly papers. We will discuss this with you in more detail at the home visit.
What about more valuable items, like paintings or silver?
It is actually easier to sell more valuable items than the more common ones. However, if an item would be more appropriately sold in another area, then I will discuss this with you. In the past I have sold several paintings for more than $100,000.00, silver candle sticks for $75,000.00, a Lincoln autograph and many other unusual and valuable items. These items were sold to buyers in other parts of the country.
Do you price every item or sell things in box lots?
To maximize the sale income, we do not sell by box lots. Auctions often handle linens, kitchenware and books by the box, but we price them individually.
What about clothing?
If it is in good condition, we sell that too. We do not sell shoes or underwear unless they are new.
What about purses, scarves, handkerchiefs and things like that?
Those are good sellers. Hats and purses are often quite collectible.
What happens to the things that don't sell?
During the last hour of the sale, we have a half price sale for items under $20.00. We have printed bid slips that customers can fill out and make offers on more expensive items. At the end of the day, I sell the remainder out as a group, excluding anything unusually valuable.
Can I put a minimum on some things?
Yes, but if that item does not sell for your minimum, it becomes your responsibility. All minimums must be agreed upon at the time you choose to hire our firm.
Can I refuse to accept some bids that I think are too low?
Yes. Sometimes I can find a buyer after the sale who will pay more. If not and you do not wish to accept the bid, then you will need to decide what you will do with the item as it becomes your responsibility.
How far in advance should I plan to book a sale?
The further in advance the better. Depending on the bookings, it may be possible to arrange a sale with a week's notice but two to three weeks would be much better.
What should I do to get ready?
Go through and remove all personal papers you wish to retain and throw out those you do not want. Throw out all perishables and medications before you leave. Arrange to have all items which are being shipped picked up before the set up day so they will not be in the way.
But I'll be staying in the house until the sale, and I will have boxes and some furniture going with me when I leave.
What do I do?
We need to get those items in a secure place. Either put everything in one room or large closet that we can seal off or go ahead and pack your UHaul in advance of the sale. We will work with you to make this process easier.
Can I stay during the sale?
Yes you can. However, it can be upsetting to see strangers going through the effects of a loved one. This is particularly difficult for an older person who has lost a spouse and is moving out of their home.
Neighbors are often hesitant to shop or leave bids if the home owner is present.
Do you take checks? What happens if they bounce?
Yes, I take checks. I take care of any problems with checks. I have only had one bad check in 30 years.
How do we get our money and do you send some kind of statement?
I send you a business check in four to seven working days. The check is from an escrow account with Bank of America. There is an accompanying statement giving the gross, commission, sales tax, and net as well as any special services you request such as cleaning.
What about sales tax?
Florida law requires that a person in business who conducts sales on a regular basis must collect sales tax. We add the tax to the price at the cashier and remit it monthly to the State of Florida. There is no cost to you.
Can I get a list that tells me what things sold for?
Yes, but we ask you to limit the request to items over $50.00 or the several pieces you are particularly interested in. We literally sell hundreds of items during a sale and listing them all takes hours. I used to give interested customers the sales tickets if they wished, but since we may be audited by the Department of Revenue, we have to keep the sales tickets.