Estate Sale To Downsize Your Home?

As the baby boomer generation and their parents want to live in a smaller house, condominium, apartment or care facility, they see their belongings as just stuff and want to dispose of them in the quickest fashion without giving any consideration to value. This is very unfortunate because the proceeds from the sale could go a long way to help with their expenses. Because people are so anxious to just get it done, things get thrown away or donated like Lionel train sets, dolls, teddy bears, quilts, rugs, souvenir items, dishes, paintings, antique furniture, jewelry, pottery and lots of other things that are worth money. Most of these people are at a time in their lives where they depend upon a fixed income to meet expenses and when inflation takes hold they need any extra money to make ends meet. Antiques, collectibles, gold, silver, antique & collectible toys, stamps, antique guns, antique swords, antique medical items and more are worth money just like your car. The only difference in determining value is that you know what make, model and year your car is so it can easily be looked up in a value guide. Antiques, jewelry, paintings and collectibles are more difficult because you have to be familiar with the subject matter in order to research value.


Estate Sale

In order to get the most money for your stuff, it needs to be sorted. If you want certain relatives to definitely have certain items regardless of worth, they need to be marked or given to them. You also need to mark everything you want in your new home. The remaining stuff are items you want to dispose of. They need to be sorted by how you plan to dispose of them. Some options are charity, consignment store, auction, estate sale or dealer. Some items will go best at an estate sale and quite frankly belong there. Other items would be best given to charity and still others to a consignment store or auction. The key factor in deciding what goes where is knowledge of what you have and how much it’s worth.


Some people, in an effort to get the disposal process done quickly, call in an antique dealer. Some antique dealers are fairer than others. Remember, the antique dealer wants to pay you as little as possible so they can make a nice profit. If you don’t know anything about what you are selling, it might be more prudent to call in an appraiser first. That is why auctions or consignment stores might do better for you because they take a percentage of the selling price.


Auctioneers will tell you that the market is the market but each auctioneer has his own market which is determined by who comes to their auction, what they want and how much they bid. If you take the same item and put it in different auction houses, you may get different prices due to the demographics of their audience and their interest in your item. Auctions can be effective depending upon what you have and their audience. People go to an auction with the idea of getting an item cheap. It’s only the competition in the audience bids that forces the price up. If there is little or no competition, the price has little or nowhere to go before the auctioneer yells “SOLD”. Most auctioneers don’t like to place reserves on items because that limits their ability to sell the item and takes the idea of getting a bargain out of the auction.


SOLD! But at what price?

SOLD! But at what price?

In a rush to move on and get rid of the stuff, many people have estate sales or yard sales. If you saw a piece of Tiffany Glass at a yard sale or estate sale, would you be willing to pay top dollar for it? If you are looking to purchase a used car privately, are you looking to pay book value for it? My point is that depending upon where the item is being sold and how it is marketed may go a long way in helping the ultimate sales price.


If you can wait, a consignment store such as Showcase Antique Center can do a great job for you. We have free appraisal days every Saturday from 10:00 AM to 2:00 PM and will give you a free verbal appraisal. Limit of 2 items per customer. If you are looking to consign, simply set up an appointment, tell us about your stuff and bring it in. We make phone calls to customers we know who might want what you have, we advertise monthly in the Maine Antique Digest, have our web site and blog and put some items on ebay. We sell your items at a fixed fair price and if we are offered a lesser price, we pass that information along to you with our recommendation.


I am not advocating that going with a consignment store is always the right answer in every circumstance, however, it should be considered along with auctions and estate sales.


We at Showcase Antique Center would welcome the opportunity to meet with you to discuss your personal situation. We have helped a lot of people who are attempting to move to a smaller home who tell us that they are really trying to find a way to get more money for their stuff  Just give us a call at (508) 347-7190 or email us at and see the Showcase difference for yourself. You can also visit our web site for more information on the process.

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If you have any questions, please feel free to call us at (508) 347-7190 or email us.

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Showcase Antique Center, Inc.
Marketing for Dealers & Consignors since 1990
The Estate Sales Alternative
371 Main Street
At The Entrance To Old Sturbridge Village
Sturbridge, MA 01566
Tel: (508) 347-7190
See our antiques for sale on line
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