Estate Sales

estate-sales

An estate sale’s main objective is the orderly liquidation of personal property in a relatively short period of time for the highest proceeds possible.

The concept is pretty straightforward, yet (for some) the process can be laden with significant emotional trauma, difficult  logistical challenges, and crucial deadlines.

Closing a home or business can be exhausting — and even traumatic — for the layman. We strive to minimize our clients’ stress throughout the entire process.

We’re  experts in managing estate liquidations, and offer efficient, professional services without forgetting the needs of our clients.

No death need have occurred. On the contrary, about sixty percent of all our sales are downsizing sales of one kind or another. We often work for those who are moving, couples who are divorcing, business owners who are liquidating, etc.

The process begins with a complimentary consultation in which we come and view the property in question. At this time, we also discuss any special needs you may have. (We recognize that each situation is unique.)

Our commission, something usually set in the initial consultation, is based upon what we estimate the gross sales will be and how much work must be done in order for your sale to be successful.  (N.b.: We may quote lower commissions on particular items — e.g., motorcycles, higher end automobiles, recreational vehicles, boats, farm implements, and other exceptionally high ticket items.)

We cannot quote a “one size fits all” commission here, as each estate merits a different commission based upon its estimated gross, the labor required, and so forth.

We tend to book our sales several months in advance, and require that all firm and final decisions about what will and will not be sold be made prior to any contract being signed.

We also require that the venue in which we are to work be thoroughly vacated prior to our starting work. (We do not work with anyone living in the venue we’re to conduct the sale in. This is the gold standard in our profession, and is non-negotiable.)

WHAT WE DO:

Once we sign a contract that outlines our basic duties and expectations, we work patiently and efficiently. We clean, organize and display all items in the home.

If no security system exists on site (and we deem one necessary), we have a traveling, satellite-linked security system, complete with glass break monitors and full room motion detectors — all at no extra cost to you, our client. 

We separate household trash from merchandise to be sold. (There’s no need for you to do this beforehand. We do the work for you! In fact, we even go so far as to ask that you throw absolutely nothing away until we’ve had a chance to see the estate in its entirety. You’d be amazed to see what some folks put into the garbage can!)

We price all items to be sold based upon our many years of experience as professional estate appraisers and liquidators, as well as our knowledge of current market comparables.

Should an outside expert be needed for consultation during the research/pricing process (e.g., with large gems, certain firearms, coins and stamps etc.), we take care of matters quickly and discreetly.

We provide and set up shelving, lighting, mirrors, drapes, tables, locked and lighted showcases, risers, clothing racks, jewelry trays, cash registers and all other necessary equipment.

We obtain any and all necessary municipal permits required for the sale. (Sometimes we may ask the client’s assistance in obtaining H.O.A. permits if they’re required in gated communities with privately maintained streets, though.) We hire a professional photographer to make your sale’s online presence truly shine. 

We maintain the largest e-mail list in the state of Oklahoma, and send out weekly e-mail notifications about the upcoming sale to the many, many thousands of customers already in our database. (We use a professional e-mail delivery service that guarantees a 98.8% to 100% deliverability rate. Our open rate is more than double the national average, and our click rate is over ten times the national average.)

We create, place and pay for advertising in the most appropriate local newspaper(s).

We advertise through EstateSales.net, EstateSale.com, and EstateSales.org to notify customers who aren’t already on our regular e-mail list.

We mark steps and other potential hazards in both Spanish and English, and cordon off any dangerous areas of the property used.  We also place professionally made “no entry” signs that are worded in English, Spanish, and Vietnamese on the entrances to all areas that won’t be open to the public.

We never conduct a sale without an officer of the law (e.g., a police officer or county sheriff) on site; we arrange for said officer, and pay his or her services.

Our friendly and reliable staff waits on each and every customer on sale day(s). (We usually have between nine and twelve staff members on site at all our sales. We strongly suggest that you do not settle for fewer than that no matter which firm you select to liquidate the estate you need sold.)

We keep paper records on all items sold for seven fiscal years and strongly advise that you avoid working with any firm that doesn’t keep precise paper records that can be readily available for the client’s audit, or for any required governmental audits, whether state or Federal.

We accept credit cards, and we “eat” any applicable fees. (We don’t charge these fees back to the consumer, nor to you. “Plastic” sales constitute over 70% of our revenue, and the resulting fees total a significant amount. Remember, too, that it’s against the law in Oklahoma for merchants of any kind to charge the consumer for his or her credit/debit fees.)

We provide boxes, bags and wrapping materials for customers on sale day(s), and we provide a Port-A-Potty for our customers’ convenience. (We don’t allow the public to use the restrooms in the sale venue itself, but want to make certain that everyone’s comfortable while shopping.)

We can arrange for 501(c)3 charity pick-ups and/or buy-out brokers after your sale, else you can choose to keep everything.
(Most clients choose to do a “walk-through” at the close of the sale itself, whether in person or by Skype.)

If there (and this is rare) are very high-end items left over, we can even help you place them into the appropriate out-of-state auction.

We’ll work with your realtor to expedite the sale of your home. (Why pass up free marketing for your largest asset?

We’re happy to provide you with top rate professional referrals for everything from realty to mortgage services to roofing to plumbing. (We even refer other professional liquidators or auctioneers as needed!)

It all boils down to this: we work for YOU, the client, and strive to make you as much money as possible in as short a time as possible.

Our commissions are competitive; our service is comprehensive.

WHAT WE DON’T DO:

Under no circumstances do we hire dealers. (Many, if not most, estate liquidation companies let dealers work for free, and compensate them with early or otherwise special buying privileges. WE DO NOT. The folks who work for us do so because they enjoy the work and are paid an hourly rate to work.)

Under no circumstances do we sell an item without writing a paper ticket for said item. (You should be able to audit the books from your estate sale, as should pertinent governmental agencies. Period.)

We do not rent nor divulge our mailing list. If we list the sales of friends (and we do almost every week!), we do so solely as a professional courtesy, and receive no compensation of any kind for doing so.

We do NOT  buy estates. On the contrary, we believe that buying estates constitutes a serious conflict of interest for the professional estate liquidator.

We don’t conduct dealer previews before our sales, although we once did years ago. (And have regretted as much on several occasions!)

We don’t own a shop nor rent booth space anywhere, nor do we sell online.

In short, we don’t compete against our clients’ best interests.

Your trust, privacy and peace of mind are of paramount importance to us.