Insider Tips for Estate Sale Newbies

Insider Tips for Estate Sale Newbies

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Adrienne Breaux
Feb 28, 2017
(Image credit: Heather Keeling)

Anastassia Nelson may still be in her twenties, but she owns her own stylish house and is excellent at navigating the intricacies of estate sales. Because estate sales aren't like yard and garage sales, they can be a bit intimidating to those not in the know. That's why I asked Ana to share some insider tips and unspoken rules to help guide someone who's never been to an estate sale before.

Ana's insider tips for attending an estate sale:

Be prepared to feel odd.

Estate sales can be kind of weird to a newcomer. You're walking up to someone's house, and it can seem a bit strange to just let yourself in and wander around.

You might not need to carry a wad of cash.

Unlike yard sales, many estate sales accept credit cards as a form of payment.

(Image credit: Heather Keeling)

There's a lot to look through, so plan your time accordingly.

Unlike a yard sale, there is an entire house and property of goods for sale! While this was once someone's home, it's a pop-up shop for the weekend.

(Image credit: Heather Keeling)

You can pick up later.

You can often arrange to pick up your haul later, but if you're hitting multiple sales, make sure you have room in your car.

(Image credit: Heather Keeling)

What's on the tag isn't necessarily the final price.

You can totally negotiate! For larger items, there is often a bid sheet available that will be evaluated at the end of the sale. Say you spot a pretty cool couch, but it's more than you want to pay, leave your bid and phone number with your own price and if the item doesn't sell for the asking price, it's yours.

You'd be surprised how often you might receive a call on Monday morning that they've accepted your offer. Tuesday is typically pick-up day for bid sheet items. And as an added bonus, you might be able to shop the sale once more at rock bottom prices while you're there. After all, the point of an estate sale is to liquidate the estate.


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