6
   

Inside info on estate sales?

 
 
Reply Sat 3 Jan, 2009 09:06 pm
The last good estate sale I went to:

I went on opening day and saw something I loved but it was priced way beyond my means ($2,500). On the last day (the second) I managed to buy said item for $600.

Today I went to an estate sale where just about everything was priced beyond my means. The sale runs through Monday (three days). I'm wondering if it might be worth my time to drive back over there on Monday and have another look around.

Is it typical for estate sale items to be greatly discounted on the final day?

Is there some kind of percentage calculation on what to offer if it isn't greatly discounted?

What is the inside scoop on how these things work?

Thanks!
  • Topic Stats
  • Top Replies
  • Link to this Topic
Type: Question • Score: 6 • Views: 773 • Replies: 14
No top replies

 
Butrflynet
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 09:19 am
From: http://www.brendascastle.com/2007/11/test-my-site.html

Quote:
Estate sales, as the biggest of all tag sales, are a great place to find a good bargain. And because the scope of an estate sale is grander than your typical yard sale, finding items such as antiques and furniture is much more likely. Generally speaking an estate sale will offer a whole household of items to choose from, and will run between one and three days.

In order to get the best selection it is necessary to show up at the very beginning of the sale. In fact, at many sales you will notice a line of people waiting to get in before the sale even opens. So if there is a specific item listed in the estate’s advertisements that you’d like to get your hands on, the best idea is to be early. If you are simply interested in taking a look around and maybe finding something interesting, or if price is more your concern, at many estate sales the price will begin to drop as the sale goes along. If you don’t mind getting second pick, so to speak, than arriving at the sale a little later one will help you avoid crowds as well as get the best deal.


From: http://articles.latimes.com/2008/may/04/business/fi-cover4

Quote:
Determine if it’s a first-come, first-served event. Do you need to get a number showing your place in line?

Then find out when, or if, prices will be negotiable. Some professional estate sellers will consider a counteroffer on the first day, though others won’t budge until at least the second, when you may get what you want for half price. On the last day of the sale, try anything.

And if you’re after something specific " say, Reed & Barton sterling silver flatware in a Francis I pattern " you can get on what sellers call the “want list.”


0 Replies
 
Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 09:50 am
@boomerang,
Quote:
The sale runs through Monday (three days). I'm wondering if it might be worth my time to drive back over there on Monday and have another look around.


Boomer- Absolutely go back if there is something that you really want. In my town, (because it is a retirement area) garage and estate sales are as popular as McDonalds. Every Friday and Saturday, there are loads to choose from.

The way it works, if a sale is run by a professional, the stuff that is left at the end of the sale needs to be put in storage, and then moved to another sale. That costs money. If there is something that you want on the last day of the sale, there is a good chance that you can get it for a fraction of its original asking price.

At the end of a sale, if you want something, just make an offer. You may be pleasantly surprised.

FYI when I sold the stuff from my mother's house, the estate sale lady told me that there are people who go from sale to sale, and KNOW when something has been moved around for awhile.
parados
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 09:52 am
@boomerang,
I have often seen everything marked down 50% on the last day of estate sales.
Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 09:57 am
@parados,
parados- Exactly right. But, especially if the item is large, and has to be moved,
a person can haggle, and get a better deal.
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 10:17 am
Ohhhhh, interesting!

The sale was run by a professional company. Mr. B and I both felt that there was way, WAY too much stuff at the sale to have all come from one house. The items were also very eclectic -- it didn't seem like things that one person would have collected.

There were a few things that I really liked, one of them was pretty darn big too!

I know I run the risk of the items not being there on Monday but it sounds like it would be worth the drive over just to see what is left.

Thanks!
Green Witch
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 11:21 am
@boomerang,
There are so called professional estate sale companies, they sell many home furnishings and bric-a-brac that they buy wholesale and try to sell at a profit. These companies also tend to do traveling auctions. You usually don't get great deals from them because they run sales frequently and can always sell an item at the another event.

If it was an actual estate sale, I would tell you to leave your phone number with the person in charge and ask them to call you if the item is still available on the last day. If they call, try and have them give you a price by saying "what's your best price on that stuffed elephant chandelier?" If he's still too high- say, "I was thinking more around $xxxx.Would that be fair? I have cash." Anyone really wanting to get rid of stuff will be happy for the deal.
0 Replies
 
hamburger
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 11:46 am
@Phoenix32890,
phoenix wrote :

Quote:
there are people who go from sale to sale, and KNOW when something has been moved around for awhile.


theae people are probably "pickers" that have been hired to look for a specific piece or are looking for anything undervalued - auctioneers and furniture restorers often have "pickers" working for them .
as ehbeth (a veteran of auctions) was told by an auctioneer friend :
"the profit is in buying low , not in selling high" .
hbg
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 11:48 am
@hamburger,
as Mince put it, "the money's in the buying, not in the selling"
0 Replies
 
Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 12:02 pm
@Phoenix32890,
Another thing. My mother lived in a part of town that was in a gated community. Garage and estate sales were not allowed, except for the once-a-year community garage sale. Therefore, ALL of my mother's stuff had to be taken to other sales.
0 Replies
 
Phoenix32890
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 12:04 pm
@hamburger,
hamburger- One always knows who the "pickers" are. They are invariably at the beginning of the line, and they get first crack at the most valuable stuff.
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 12:09 pm
@Phoenix32890,
The pickers usually also have a surprisingly large wad of $100's in their grubby looking pockets. It can be a darn good living.
0 Replies
 
boomerang
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 12:23 pm
The company holding the sale is Fischborn and the phone number is local. I think they're a local company.

I'm not looking for anything to resell. Our house is pretty void of furniture. We buy it sporadically and only at good prices. Right now we're looking for a couple of specific things and it seems that the first of the year is always the best time to buy used furniture.
Green Witch
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 12:27 pm
@boomerang,
Quote:
it seems that the first of the year is always the best time to buy used furniture.


I agree, most people are trying to declutter and others are too broken from the holidays to splurge on furniture. Do you have any good auctions in your area? They often have winter sales where they clear out inventory and you can get things cheap.
0 Replies
 
ehBeth
 
  1  
Reply Sun 4 Jan, 2009 12:35 pm
@boomerang,
I went to the Fischborn website - lots of interesting mixed things - looks like it's pretty heavy on stuff from 1880 - 1900 in this sale.
0 Replies
 
 

Related Topics

Getting estimates - Discussion by ossobuco
 
  1. Forums
  2. » Inside info on estate sales?
Copyright © 2019 MadLab, LLC :: Terms of Service :: Privacy Policy :: Page generated in 0.03 seconds on 06/16/2019 at 03:16:14