Frequently Asked Questions About Estate Liquidation
We hope these questions will provide answers on all aspects of the estate sale process
- Who are Your Clients?
We specialize in liquidation of large and upscale homes and large estates. No home is too big – we have the knowledge, personnel, experience, resources, staging props and buyer contacts necessary to create and manage an estate liquidation in any home.
- Home Owners
If you have just sold your home and need to get rid of extra furniture, appliances and even automobiles, having an estate sale can help.
- Blending Households
Creating a single comfortable and cohesive home from two separate complete households is a huge job. We know how to make it easy and pain-free!
- Corporate transfers, renters or anyone simply relocating
Career and lifestyle changes such as merging two homes, buying a home or being promoted to another city leave little time to deal with the moving details. We manage the disposition of furnishings and belongings that don’t fit the new situation and can facilitate all aspects of the move.
- Trustees, Executors of Estates, Lawyers
We manage the downsizing and/or disposition of the trust client’s personal and household property.
- Real Estate Agents
We assist by having their listing cleared and cleaned before the new owners move in or cleaned and staged for market presentation.
- Seniors and “Empty-Nesters”
When you have decided to downsize to a smaller home, a senior’s residence, or an assisted living residence Smart Move manages a broad range of services that take away the worry and work of downsizing to a simpler lifestyle.
- Home Owners
- What is your process?
- We sit with you and listen as you tell us what you want to accomplish. We carefully consider your wishes, and what you want to sell.
- We analyze the arrangement of your home and property to determine traffic flow.
- We use a variety of comprehensive services tailored to meet the needs of each client to custom design a plan that will effectively accomplish your goals.
- We write and place all advertising, send out e-mail announcements to our subscriber list and place directional signs and balloons to help buyers find your sale.
Throughout the liquidation process, your household contents are treated with the utmost respect. We understand that you may have many memories associated with the items being sold. We provide everything needed to sort, organize, display, price, advertise, and sell the contents of the home in a professional manner. We provide exceptional attention to detail, with many years of experience identifying and valuing antiques, collectibles and general household goods and furniture.
- How do you charge for your service?
Our first meeting is on a “no cost/no obligation” basis. If you contract with us to host your sale, further meetings related to the sale are also on a “no cost” basis.
Our fees are based on a commitment fee when a contract is signed, then we are on a 50/50 commission from the proceeds of the sale.
- How are the “Sold” items tracked?
We supply a cash register and a cashier for each sale. All transactions are entered into the cash register. At the end of each sale day a revenue total is taken and recorded onto a Daily Cash Sheet. All sales tags are kept for your records. We accept Visa, Mastercard and Debit which makes it easier to track revenue.
- What kinds of things do you sell?
Our experience includes fine art, antiques, sterling silver, china, crystal & glassware, linens, clothing, furniture, books, jewelry, records, electronics, stamp and coin collections, tools, gold, silver, collectables, appliances, firearms, automobiles, motorcycles, boats, and much more. Whatever can be found in your home or garage!
- How do you know what to price the items at?
We have extensive experience selling all of the types of items listed above. When pricing items we consider all markets and other factors relating to the item, ensuring the best possible price for you. We also work closely with many appraisers, collectors and gold and silver experts.
- How do you organize and display items?
We organize and arrange items in the most attractive manner possible so that they will be appealing to potential buyers. Small valuable items are placed in a display case. Large valuable items are placed where they are easy to monitor and safeguard. Some members of the staff, including myself, are certified professional Stagers.
- How do you advertise?
We develop a promotional campaign that is designed to attract the maximum number of qualified buyers to your sale.
We advertise by using:
- Our website sends out notifications to our ever-growing list of sale subscribers. For most sale openings we have a line-up waiting for the doors to open and often virtually sell out before the sale dates end,
- advertisements in local newspapers where appropriate,
- sandwich board signs with balloons attached on street level leading to the location from all directions possible.
- We also inform our buyers at the previous sale about the next sale location and items for sale.
- What do you do about clean up after the sale?
The end result is generally a cleaned-out home. We are currently at a 95-100% success level at selling off everything.
Smart Move will leave the premises broom clean. If more cleaning is required we then contract cleaning personal at an additional cost to you. We dispose of any ordinary household trash at no additional cost, provided that you maintain your trash service. If there is excessive trash, we will dispose of it at an additional cost to you. We do not handle any hazardous waste or hazardous materials.
- What does your commission include?
When you hire us to conduct your Estate Sale you are getting…
- our experience and expertise
- our ability to attract interested buyers
- our ability to sell your property for top dollar
- our ability to solve problems for you
- all necessary supplies and equipment
- trained personnel and professional staging
- sell everything in the home
- our honesty and integrity
We apply our management experience, business experience, product knowledge, people skills, and knowledge of the market to conduct a successful Estate Sale for you.
- How can I tell you are honest?
We have established an outstanding reputation for uncompromising honesty, integrity, professionalism, and service. We are happy to give you references from our past clients
- Why should I sell my things?
Selling items you no longer need is a wise financial decision! Selling unused items allows you to invest your money, or use it for other purposes. You can also make more room in your home, give your home a new look, eliminate the cost of storage units and reduce upkeep, maintenance or insurance expenses.
- May I attend the sale?
We are very comfortable having you attend the sale. However, many people find it emotionally difficult and choose to do something else while the sale is in operation.
- What should I throw away and what should I keep?
Do not throw anything away until you have talked with us. The old saying that “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure” is very true. Practically everything has some value, and we can find a buyer for almost anything.
- Someone told me that my sterling silver, cut glass, and china aren’t as valuable as they once were. Is this true?
Generally speaking, sterling silver, cut glass, and formal china are not as valuable as they once were. The reason for this is quite simple – many people do not have time for formal entertaining, many homes do not have formal dining rooms, and many people prefer a simpler lifestyle. Nevertheless, we do have a solid market for these items and we can sell them if the client is realistic about their fair market value.
- Do you pay people for referring business to you?
We do not pay referral fees. We want people to refer us based solely upon the quality of work we do, not based upon a possible financial gain. We appreciate referrals from people who know the quality of work we do and our strict adherence to professional standards and codes of ethics. Our commitment and appreciation for every referral to us is that we will do an excellent, high quality job that will make referrers proud to recommended us!
- Do you have ‘Testimonials’ from previous clients?
No, we would rather give you references and contact information so that you can speak to our clients yourself and ask the questions that matter to you. We have lots of very happy customers!
- Why can’t I just do my own sale?
A successful sale takes a considerable amount of time and effort to organize. It requires a wide range of knowledgeable, experienced and hard working personnel who give detailed attention to every item from start to finish. It can be very difficult to detach emotionally from heirlooms and family items that are tied to memories. We often see at owner-run or family-run sales the valuable items are sold at “give away prices” and the less valuable items are priced too high. A lot of work and turmoil results in far less money than we can earn for you and a lot of ordinary household items are left to be given away or donated. You never get a second chance to sell estate property. Make sure it is done right the first time!
- My neighbour/ friend/ real estate agent/ house keeper want to buy something.
We have seen countless situations where people have sold items to people they know for a fraction of the fair market value. Ask yourself if your relationship with the person is such that you want to give the item to them. If it is, then just give the item to them. Otherwise, do not sell anything yourself! An individual simply does not know fair market values unless they are engaged in selling property on a daily basis! Call on us we can put a price on it for you.
- What do I have to do to help?
We ask that you remove any items from the property you do not want to sell, if possible. Other than that, you only have to tell us what you want to sell, and accept our cheque for the proceeds. We do all the work and we handle all the details!
- What if I only have a few things I want to sell?
We do not sell just a few items because of the large volume of buyers we bring to the sale. I would suggest bringing your items to our Liquidation Outlet and consigning the items from there.