Most people are familiar with estate sales, but not too many see them as a personal option for junk removal. But they can work well for large-scale downsizing.
In today's economy, liquidating a deceased family member’s estate is becoming an increasingly common task. Because a large segment of the population in the U.S. is aging, the estate sale business is expanding. And because of the increasing life spans of Americans, the parents of baby boomers are often only passing away just as their children are beginning to retire.
And because the gown children tend to downsize when they retire, these are two trends that have fueled the growth of estate liquidation businesses.
It is not clear exactly how many estate liquidation companies are operating in the United States. Unlike most other business sectors, the industry is largely unregulated and has no central licensing body. But according to the American Society of Estate Liquidators (ASEL), a trade association, it has been estimated that there are about 14,000 companies nationwide and these numbers are expanding.
The ASEL does note that members must meet certain education or experience requirements and follow a professional code of ethics. However, it is also estimated that the majority of estate liquidators have no formal training and that essentially anyone can set themselves up in business as an estate seller.
Can You Sell All of Your Stuff?
The need for an estate clean out is typically the result of an unfortunate event that can occur in life. These are death, divorce, debt and downsizing. These four events often result in estate clean outs. In fact, an increasing number of Americans are downsizing due to major lifestyle changes, experiencing the death of a parent or other family member, or dealing with divorce and bankruptcy or crippling debt.
In fact, according to AARP, some 8,000 Americans a day will turn 65 for the next two decades or so. Combine that with high divorce rates and the financial crisis that people are still recovering from, and a result is more estate sales.
However, even though the business has traditionally relied on the relatives of those who have died, many people are turning to estate sales as a solution to their own economic or lifestyle challenges. Since about 2008, the economic problems that came from that downturn have also contributed to an increase in estate sales for the living.
And, while it is not uncommon among younger people, it is increasingly common with older people who are either retired or coming up on retirement. These folks are looking to sell off much off some or most of their possessions in order to both simplify their lifestyles and to make ends meet.
So, can you sell your things with an estate sale and can you make a profit?
Keep in mind that estate sale companies typically keep 25 to 50 percent of the proceeds from sales, depending on the number of items offered. What you get for that fee is the staging of the sale at your home, advertising and online promotion, hiring the people needed to conduct and manage the sale, and setting the prices for your item. In addition, they will usually offer services for cleaning up before and after.
While you can certainly downsize and see much of your unwanted or unneeded furniture and household goods disposed of for a price, don't expect to get rich! Tastes changes with each generation. What people look for in furniture and decor has moved from traditional or antique styles to more modern design.
In other words, furniture and appliances that are portable, easy to move around, and modern sell faster and easier than the typical heavy, dark furniture that has become increasingly available as more older people downsize. The problem is that you may find that your prized credenza has little appeal to those attending your estate sale.
This is true for a number of traditional furniture items.
The revolution in home entertainment technology that has brought us flat-screen TVs and digital music have made the old entertainment centers obsolete. Remember TV cabinets? Every room in the traditional American home is seeing a shift in taste, style and size preferences. Despite the challenges, an estate sale can still be a good way to find a good home for your excess belongings. And make some cash on some things, too.
If you have a large amount of furniture and household items to sell, then hosting and estate sale in your home can be a great option. Keep in mind, however, that if you do not own at least $10,000 worth of goods, most companies will not agree to hold your estate sale. If possible, take time to choose a reputable company and have the estate liquidator come in and prepare your home and your belongings for the sale.
As noted earlier, their staff will come in and price items and stage them in your home in a way that’s attractive and minimize breakage during the sale itself. An estate sale is an event that involves far more than a simple yard sale. Having a professional company that can manage the buyers, watch for theft, and facilitate the liquidation is a great benefit and worth the price.
There are advantages to having a sale in your home as opposed to an off-site location. Even though items such as carpets and old furniture aren't big sellers, they are more likely to sell from your home since buyers can more easily visualize them in their own homes.
Once the sale is over and all the dust has settled, you will likely find that there are still unwanted items that will need to be disposed of. Unless the firm you hired offers to haul these for you, you will need to find a good junk removal service.
A Professional Junk Removal Service Can Be a Big Help
Getting your home clean after an estate sale can be a huge task. In fact, it can be overwhelming, both physically and emotionally. Much of what must be done is simply monotonous and time consuming - tasks like sorting through paperwork, for example.
However, there are often clean up that requires physical exertion such as cleaning, moving furniture and hauling off the unwanted items and debris.
This is where a professional estate clean out service like Junk King can be big help.
Once you've made the decision to get help with your house clean out, you need to decide which firm is the right one for the job. You might have a friend with a truck who is willing to do the job, but opting for that alternative could end up costing you more than you think you'll save.
Going with Junk King, on the other hand, provides an efficient, safe and eco-friendly residential furniture and junk removal service. The last thing you need is to worry about the pick up or disposal of household items and debris after your sale is complete.
Junk King for Your Estate Cleanup
When it comes to an estate cleanup, you should work with a company that is punctual, patient, and respectful while treating you with genuine care. With years of experience in helping our customers with estate clean outs, we understand that when a loved one passes away you don’t want to worry about cleaning up their apartment or house.
Whether you are handling an estate sale for a client, are simply downsizing yourself, or even dealing with the daunting task of clearing a deceased relative's home, place of business or any other property left behind, we can help. Our estate clean out services are used by landlords, attorneys, banks and homeowners who need to dispose of unneeded and unwanted items, junk and clutter that might prevent or slow down the process of handing over an estate.
Our team specializes in large debris removal and furniture hauling. We can be on location in mere minutes, so call us today! Our crew is fully insured and well-trained, so you can trust them to get rid of your unwanted items in a professional and courteous fashion.
One of the best things about hiring Junk King is that we recycle a much of the material we pick-up. This is proof of our commitment to being an eco-friendly removal service. If you have questions about what we do or what we believe, give us a call at (707) 744-4254.