Have you been handed the task of liquidating a loved ones estate? Not sure what to do next? Here are a few tips to help get you through it:
· Are you going to clear the home out on your own? Or are you thinking of hiring an estate sale company to do the work for you? There are pros and cons to both, but the number one thing to think about is, do you have the time to get it all done? Clearing a home of its contents is a monumental task, and not one to be taken lightly. We’ve seen it countless times where an individual family member tries to do it all on their own, only to be swamped with work and unsure of what to do next. While not impossible, liquidating a home on your own can turn into an incredibly emotional, time consuming, and frustrating job.
· When making a decision on an estate liquidation company, ask for referrals and do your research. There are several things for you to consider. Are you liquidating the whole house or do you only need to remove a few items? Do the belongings warrant going to auction or should they be a part of a charitable donation for a tax write off? Many companies have several options for you to choose from, including onsite estate sales, auctions, showroom sales, and buy outs. Some companies do all of these things, while others focus on only one or two of them. Just know that you have options, and take the time to do some research before you sign the contract. The best thing you can do is attend one of the perspective companies sales, but a quick search online can also do the trick. After everything is said and done you’ll be very glad you did.
· If you’ve chosen to hire an onsite estate sale company like Earlybird Estate Liquidation, it’s a good idea to do some prep before they get there. If you’ve opted for a complete liquidation of the home, make sure to pull out anything you or your family wants to keep before the company gets there. That includes everything from small pieces of jewelry to large pieces of furniture. Once set up on the home has started, everything will be offered to the public for sale. There may be some exceptions, such as large appliances and/or window coverings, but this needs to be made very clear to the company if those items are staying onsite through the sale date and not being sold. If you remove items after the crew has begun set up the value of the item may come out of your portion of the sales.
· Understand that the company is there to help, so it’s best to sit back and let them do their job. Your presence onsite while the crew is working will be a distraction, so it’s best if you stay away for those few days. We know it can be hard and you’re going to be very curious about what’s happening, but there’s a lot to do, so it’s in everyone’s best interest to just let the company focus on their work so they can get the job done on time. Take that time to relax and know that you’re in good hands with Earlybird looking after your loved one’s belongings.
· The sale is not something you should attend. There are several reasons for this, but the most important is that your attendance will be a distraction. Similar to set up days, it’s best to let the pros do what they’re good at: liquidating the contents of the home. In order to do this successfully items will be discounted, sometimes very deeply. Trust that the company you’ve chosen knows what they’re doing and will do everything they can to meet their goals.
· What do you do with the items that don’t sell? There will undoubtedly be some items that don’t sell, and you’ll have to make some decisions about what to do with those items. Some companies will clear them out for a fee while others will include it in their buy out, and you can always opt to take care of it yourself. In our experience, it’s best to go for the clean out, that way the home is totally clear and ready for the next step. It will be a weight lifted from your shoulders to walk into a cleared and cleaned out home when the whole process is complete.
Clearing a loved ones home is something you hope to only have to do once in your life for a reason, it’s not easy. But thankfully, companies like Earlybird Estate Liquidation and Hughes Estate Sales exist to help you with all the work that comes with removing decades of belongings and finding them new homes. From the set up, to the marketing, to the sale, to the clean out, we can help you move onto the next step. It may seem like an overwhelming task, but just know that you are not alone. Earlybird is here to help.