An excellent estate company to consider is one which can HONESTLY answer these questions which most people don’t know to ask. We feel it is in YOUR BEST INTEREST to get the answers you deserve. Many companies don’t tell you what they don’t offer, but rather how great they are and ignore some very important facts. Listed below are the questions you should ALWAYS ASK any company you interview:
1. Do you have liability insurance? If so, how much? (should be standard 1 million dollar coverage). Ask them who the company is they use and provide a copy.
If they don’t have coverage they can prove, move on. Your homeowners insurance does NOT protect you if any customer comes to the sale and gets hurt.
2. Do you have an online store or an outlet which you use to sell any items you do the clean-out for from our estate?
If they answer YES, you should move on to another company. You do not want to work with any company that has motivation to sell your items AFTER the sale and they make money on it and you get NOTHING. Often times, the items are priced so high in the sale that they do NOT sell in the sale.
3. Does the consultation cost me anything for you to come out?
You should NEVER have to pay anyone to come assess your estate items. They should be coming out to see if the sale can make your estate money as well as the sale could be profitable for the estate sale company. If a company does not see enough value, they will often times CHARGE YOU to use them UP FRONT!! This is frowned upon in the industry. Any company making you pay in advance you should move on, no matter what the percent is. They are NOT motivated to sell your items. You will often times end up OWING the estate sale company to stage your sale. That is a crazy way to do business.
4. Ask them the payment methods they accept? Technology these days is very sophisticated and can make the checkout process very easy with little to no fees.
The estate sale company should always provide 3-4 payment methods (excluding checks). You don’t want them accepting a check unless they guarantee you they are covering the check amount no matter what. Any check they receive, you want them to provide a copy of the check(s). This will normally push them to stay away from any checks. The last thing you want to happen is YOU LOSE MONEY on your items from a bad check.
5. Ask them what do they do for advertising your sale (besides Estatesale.net). There are many ways to get the word about your estate sale. The company should be very proactive. Don’t rely on them telling you they will email their past clients. That never works.
6. Ask the details on the contract as well as you being allowed to pull items from the sale during a period of time before the sale!
You need to know you have some flexibility (just in case you forgot to pull something) from the sale. You do NOT want to work with a company that states once you sign the contract, you are not allowed to pull any items or you will have to “BUY IT BACK”. Yes, it’s true. There are many companies out there that won’t allow you to pull items. Normally, it is frowned upon for the seller to pull any item after it has been displayed on the webpage.
7. Ask them a very simple question… how do you find out the value of an item you don’t know what it is? What is your process or procedure?
This is great question to find out how serious a company is in researching versus guessing at prices. Many companies that charge low commissions to get the sale often have no clue how to maximize the money for your items. You don’t want to be distracted with a low commission plan but not a good end of sales figure. Simply view the big picture and make your own determination if the company cares about YOU or just their money!
Call or Email Us and ask us the same questions. YOU WILL BE PLEASED!!!