What is an estate sale?
An estate sale is generally held when the contents of a home need to be sold. Most of the time, it occurs when someone passes away and the family is left to clear out the estate. However, other reasons for an estate sale would be downsizing to a smaller home due to retirement, divorce or to pay off debt. Estate sales are designed to sell the contents of the home quickly, so you can expect prices to be lower than what you would find at a retail store or antique shop. To encourage sales, discounts are usually offered on the 2nd and 3rd day of the sale.
What can be found at an estate sale?
You will find a full range of items at an estate sale! That is what makes them so much fun. Anything from antiques, furniture, artwork, rugs, appliances, to everyday items like clothes, linens, dishes, etc. Even outside items like tools, lawn and garden equipment, outdoor furniture and accessories. Every estate sale is different and as they say “…One man’s junk is another man’s treasure…”!!
Who goes to estate sales?
Estate sales can appeal to antique dealers, collectors, interior designers or people who resell items. However, estate sales are wonderful for anyone looking for high quality items, love treasure hunting or looking for knick knacks at a fair price. You never know what you will find at an estate sale. Estate sales are wonderful to find high end furniture or one of a kind items that you don’t see everyday.
What are some tips for attending an estate sale?
Do your research – You can get a list of estate sales in your area from various different websites. These websites usually include a list of estate sale companies conducting sales in the area, the address of the sale (usually published the day before the sale), the hours of the sale, along with several pictures to review. Once you have the address of an estate sale you are interested in, you can do a “drive by”. Look for little clues like a garage full of tools, or kids toys in the back yard.
Know when to arrive – If you see something you are really interested in when browsing the pictures, it is best to arrive early before the sale opens the first day.
Come prepared – Bring measurements of your room or space for the item you are interested in. Bring a tape measure, screw driver or any tools you may need if disassembly is required. For larger items, be sure your vehicle is large enough.
Don’t be afraid to dig – Sometimes you never know what you might find in that back corner of the basement or in the box of miscellaneous items on the shelf. Walk through the entire sale before spending too much time in each room to get your bearings about what is being offered.
Bring cash – Every estate sale is different and some sales only accept cash.