How to Start an Estate Sale Company

The fact that you now have to sort through the possessions of your loved and decide what to do with them only makes the situation harder. Try to contact your local radio station to see if free airtime is a possibility at any point. For price tags that fall off or last minute to-do’s and forget-me-nots. Put this sign on the front door when you need help controlling traffic inside the house, without having to put an employee on guard.

What happens during a typical day at an estate sale company?

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Miles of Jewelry & Other Treasures at Estate Sale by Compassionate Transition

Smaller estates typically cost more, while larger estates often benefit from a lower commission rate. The American Society of Estate Liquidators is the gold standard of estate liquidators, as it’s been around since 2001. While membership costs money, you get access to a bunch of educational materials, as well as the ability to use their badge on your marketing materials. Newer to the scene, but headed by estate sale veterans, is the National Estate Sale Association another valuable professional partnership.

Be aware of which items can be recycled, which can’t, and which require special disposal, like electronics. Your municipal website should have some advice for you on that score. The Environmental Protection Agency lists companies that accept old electronics for recycling.

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You may even decide to keep expensive antiques and the like out of the estate sale and try to sell them separately for a greater profit. Here are some examples you may want to think about at your estate sale. If you know you’ll reuse them, invest in some professional, sturdy signs so you don’t have to reinvent the wheel every time. Decide ahead of time how you will handle checks, credit cards, Venmo or CashApp payments.

Another option is to attend a few local estate sales to observe how they are run, making note of any companies to consider or avoid. Some estate sale companies use a Bluetooth device to communicate with each other, and have found it has the same effect on shoplifting as having extra employees. Chalk it up to paranoia, thieves are less apt to steal when they think people are talking about them. If you suspect bad behavior, say, “We may have a problem” or something to that effect to scare the potential thief out of pocketing that collectible. This type of estate sale sign eliminates people who take off the price in hopes of getting a deal – or free! (Yes, there are people like this; stay in the business long enough, and you may start to lose faith in humanity).

Note that not all estate sales take place at people’s houses; some are held online or at businesses that are shutting down, for example. In addition to a percentage of the proceeds for commission, some estate sale companies may charge extra fees. Fees could be for staff, end-of-sale clean outs, charity pickups or donations, or any other reason that should be explained up front and outlined in the estate sale contract.

If you search online for “estate sale companies,” the results will be plentiful and may feel overwhelming. Instead, start by asking family, friends, and trusted neighbors for recommendations. They may know someone who had a positive experience with an estate sale, which will provide you with a good starting point. Just like you’d be prepared with a bridal bag for a wedding, you’ll want to gather everything you might need before your estate sale, instead of scrambling the day of. Not only will it save you time, you’ll look that much more professional and prepared to clients and customers. Pro estate salers know the best stuff often lives in the garage (power tools, anyone?) But some shoppers won’t know other rooms have items like furniture for sale unless you point it out.