Our DIY Country Chic Paint Bunk Bed makeover was so simple, a pregnant lady and a four year old did most of it in an afternoon. (We do credit husband for taking apart the bed and then putting it all back together again for us!)Read More
Our Ridgecrest Estate Sale is all set and it is so worth taking a Mad Men Marathon break to head over there.Read More
As estate liquidators, we find family treasures hidden in all kinds of places. And I personally hear from families during our free consultations that they know their mom or dad had something special hidden away that just has not been found. We have come across many lost and hidden items for our clients - from safe deposit box keys, old family photo collections, to gold coins, jewelry, gold pocket watches, stamp collections, and cash. If you are missing something or you just know your loved one liked to stash things away in secret spots, this list is for you.
If you are clearing out a family estate and need a checklist of where to look, here is my list.
- behind dressers (look for jewelry hung from mirror screws or nails)
- under tables and chairs
- in drawers (check underneath paper lining too)
- under cushions and mattresses
- under beds and furniture
- behind art and picture frames
- inside books
- closets, check top shelves
- in all clothing pockets and drape hems
- Inside shoes and shoe boxes
- dressers, items folded into shirts, wrapped in socks or under garments
- purses and old wallets
- inside old savings books and files
- inside file cabinets
- inside the toilet tank
- refrigerators/freezers, check ice cube trays and jars
- pantry, inside boxes, baskets, jars
- garage, jars and tool boxes
- garage and attic rafters
- above the water heater or appliances
- behind works of art
It is a lot of work but you should find just about anything that is there if you follow the list. Let me know if you think we should add anything for our next estate sale set up. We always love getting comments about our blog.
Check out our video of our Country Chic Paint Armoire Transformation Project
My thanks to Holly Reisem Hanna for a great interview she did with me for the Work at Home Woman on running an estate sale and property appraisal business. Check it out!Read More
We have lots of new inventory that just arrived at the Expert Estates store. We love whenever new treasures arrive for your shopping pleasure. While my team is busy setting up this weekend's estate sales, we are open in Tehachapi so anytime the home shopping urge hits you, come see us. We are open daily. Hurry in to get the cream of the crop!
- Thomasville and other brand names
- Mahogany and Cherry Wood
- King Post Bed
- Pair of Upholstered Love Seats
- Dining Room Set
- Maplewood Display Case
- Everything else!
Great article on estate sales for those who need more information on how to find someone and what to know about the process. Excerpt:
There is no regulatory body that oversees the estimated 14,000 estate sale companies, so before hiring one of them you should do some research. You can search the website of The American Society of Estate Liquidators, a trade association that requires its members to meet certain education requirements and abide by an ethics code. Be sure to check your local Better Business Bureau and Yelp for complaints about companies you are considering. You can also ask for references or attend a sale run by the company. In addition, make sure your liquidator carries insurance in case there are any accidents while buyers are at the estate sale. Finally, you should make sure the company offers a written contract.
Lisa Kroese runs a successful estate sale business that she started in 2011 after relocating to California from the East Coast. Her Estate Sale Start Up kit is available as a digital download on Etsy, and she is now offering Estate Liquidation Business Consulting Services on Clarity.
One of my favorite things about my work is setting up a great estate, part of setting up is going through everything carefully. We uncover amazing finds. We found sterling silver, gold cuff links and a lot of beautiful things in this estate. While we were in the process of setting up, yesterday (two days before the sale) someone knocked on the door asking if it would be OK to come in and shop then and there.
I can't blame them for asking and I know some folks welcome any sale, but that's just not my style. First of all, as soon as I have a sale, I tell all of my customers, who I love, to save the date and I share with them what we have found so far.
To me, a great estate is like a marvelous dinner party - I send out an invitation saying when my guests can arrive, and then I plan my menu and get to work making something fantastic.
Would you dream of showing days or hours before your host invited you to dinner and thinking it might be OK if you just came in and started helping yourself right now? No! You wouldn't, that would be crazy. If I stopped pricing, and staging and opening little boxes in junk drawers to find out what is there (just magnets or sterling spoons?), in the middle of my set up, how could I possible get my event ready for the guests? Our video is ready and we look forward to seeing everyone this weekend! Thanks for waiting patiently for the big event.
Check out my profile on Eleven 26 Talent here
Lisa Kroese is a successful 42 year old business owner, wife, and mother of two girls (both under 5) with another baby girl on the way.
She has a degree in Fine Art from the Maryland Institute, College of Art and she previously worked for US Senator Kirsten Gillibrand eventually serving as the Congressional District Director for NY’s 20th Congressional District.
Lisa now liquidates estates and consults for estate sale ups and those expanding their estate and antique businesses. She is becoming known nationwide as “The Estate Mama.” ...
My estate sale kit is for anyone starting an estate sale business, it will give you the tools you need to find and convert leads and tackle every estate liquidation job.Read More
Our estate sale start up kit on Etsy always gets five star reviews from people who need business planning, marketing and estate sale contracts. Lisa Kroese is also available as a consulting expert on Clarity. Request a call from her at this link:
Hoarding affects between 700,000 and 1.4 million people in the country according to this Psychcentral Article. Families who have to move someone out of a home packed full of belongings can be facing a task that is stressful, overwhelming and time consuming. The need to remove the contents of a pack rat home often comes up due to a difficult time in their lives - after losing a loved one or moving them into an assisted living facility.
A lot of estate liquidators will walk away from the task of sorting and liquidating a pack rat or hoarder home. These circumstances require more work, planning and attention than the average estate, often tremendously more. The labor involved is costly. The physical risks and potential hazards are also of concern to companies considering a job like this one.
At Expert Estates we recognize that these families are often the ones who need us the most. A family might look at years or decades of this accumulation and consider it all junk, often a dumpster is set up or truckloads are filled for charities. It can take a family weeks or even months trying to sort out the property inside the home. Many families don't have the time or resources to invest in getting the home cleared out. But it must be done somehow.
A team of professionals can turn things around. Depending on how much trash has to be hauled away and the condition of the remaining items, the sale of items in the home can entirely, or almost entirely cover the expense of cleaning out the home. The primary goal is to efficiently get the home ready to rent, or sell for most families. If relatives have other jobs, the work involved can be impossible given other obligations.
Our last estate sale in Santa Clarita was a perfect example. The before and after pictures are astounding. Given the labor and time involved many liquidators just advertise the estate as a picker's sale, open up a home as this and invite dealers and brave members of the public to come pull out what they want. When faced with a job like this one, at Expert Estates, we do the work of uncovering the treasures, removing the trash and putting everything back together for a true estate sale. That way the family can be proud of what is there when we open the doors and we can ask for the best possible price at the event. Most importantly, we minimize the loss of the best assets due to outright theft that occurs in a picker's sale.
The before pictures are exactly how the home looked at our initial walk through. We planned a clean out phase first for the family, during this phase, we try to save as much as we can. We do not throw away any property that could potentially be sold. This makes for a packed sale but it also brings in the best result. After all, you can donate or trash leftovers as needed at the end, why throw away anything someone might buy?
Once the items that are strictly trash are removed, our team tackles these jobs one category at a time and room by room. We knew this sale had tons of clothes (many of them were bagged and boxed up during our consult making an assessment of their condition difficult at the time), so we unpacked and hung them. They were mostly never worn and new with tags, and they were not out dated. Next, we sorted and displayed the shoes, crafting and sewing notions, office supplies, collectibles and kitchenware. The end result was an estate sale that was a hit with our customers. People shopped and then sent their friends over, and we had 56% repeat customers on the final day of our sale. Our facebook photo album had almost 1500 views. Plus we had 1,656 online views from our ad on a popular estate sale listing website.
The end results were a successful sale, happy shoppers leaving us positive feedback about what great deals they were getting and how much they bought, and most importantly, a client who said our team did an "incredible job." The photos below are the after set of the very same home. It is almost unbelievable when you know what the starting point was.
If you are dealing with a similar situation, don't hesitate to call an expert for help. Finding the right company for a sale like this can be a challenge but when the result is worthwhile. If you need guidance with any estate liquidation circumstance no matter how difficult, call us at 661-823-1635. We would love to help.
Tehachapi, CA - 18 years of appraisal experience does reinforce the old saying, “What goes up must come down.” Luckily, what was down comes up too. The past decade has been full of changes and new trends for liquidators and personal property appraisers. The antique market has been flooded by retiring baby boomers who are downsizing, and by folks who are forced to move and sell due to economic or health issues. A lot of buyers are finding out that there is more for sale than there used to be. And internet searches make things a lot less rare - something you would have to visit twenty shops for can be pulled up on eBay, Etsy and Amazon in a matter of seconds these days. Buyers are spoiled.
In spite of this, at Expert Estates, we know trends, we know quality and we can research and liquidate things for fair and even shocking prices. Over the last two years, we have secured sales that might seem shocking:
- a custom dining table sold for $1400,
- a set of ten teacups sold for over $5,000,
- a set of Venetian glasses sold for over $2,000,
- a 19th century painting auctioned for $4,250
- and a recent eBay sale for a painting by a living artist that sold for over $4,900.
We always want to get the most we can for our clients. And I want you to know what’s going on right now in the ever changing antique and resale world.
Your family might own items on the hot list that you think of as ordinary and other treasured items might not sell for much at all in this tough market. Finding a liquidator who can price your estate items right will be the key to a successful estate sale. Even in a down market, the right price will overcome all obstacles, and in the end your goal is a fair price and an empty home ready for sale or rental!
Hot items right now in Southern California and our area include:
- Newer furniture from brand name stores: Pottery Barn, Thomasville
- Antique Chinese Art and Pottery
- Danish modern, and good mid century designer furniture
- Hand carved, custom and solid wood rustic furniture
- Western goods
- Industrial design
- Original art by listed artists
- Tractors and Trailers
- Cars, RVs, Boats
- Period and new quality jewelry
- Good vintage costume jewelry
- Precious metals
- Vintage toys
- Classic rock albums: classic rock, jazz, blues.
- Vintage electronics, guitars and stereos
- Useful things like kitchenware and good tools
- Vintage iron, rattan garden and patio items
- Good vintage dresses and suites from the 1940s-60s - condition counts!
- Signed first edition books by classic authors
What’s NOT selling well?
- Everyday used wood furniture
- 1980s laminate and upholstered furniture
- Heavy and ornate antique furniture
- Collector plates and limited editions
- Vintage and antique rugs
- Upholstered furniture, unless it is neutral and like new
- China sets
- Crystal, cut and pressed glass
- Common antiques
- Media Centers
- Numbered prints, mass-produced art items
- Vintage linens
- Ivory and other banned goods can't be sold
Trends change all the time. When it is time to sell, someone with their finger on the pulse of the market right now - not someone who is stuck on the market that was hot 20 years ago, is what you will need to ensure a good sale! Relying on information or news clippings about trends that a loved one stuffed into your heirlooms can lead to disastrous results for a family. A nightmare sale is a liquidation where the hottest items in today’s market are sold for too little and items that were thought to be worth the most are left over because hardly anyone has a use for it these days and it was over valued. We only get one chance to put a price on an item for our buyers, so we want to make sure it is the right one for a fast but fair sale.
Call my store at 661-823-1635 if you want a free and honest consultation about your estate or moving sale. I love helping people through this process. My team is honest and vetted. We don't hire under the table workers or dealers who are just looking to get into your sale ahead of everyone else. You can trust us to do the right thing, keep you informed and to sell your things from one good home to another.
We have a great estate sale set up and ready for shoppers to grab the best stuff this weekend in Hollywood Hills, CA. We love our estate sale customers and we have repeat shoppers at our estate sales in client homes everywhere from Bakersfield, to Tehachapi, to Lancaster, Palmdale, Rancho Cucamonga, Santa Clarita, Van Nuys and Hollywood. It always amazes me how far people will come when we have the right mix for them and enough notice to allow them to make it to our estate sale. I got positive feedback from an anonymous shopper recently and thought I would put together a list for estate sale shoppers of things that can help you get you what you want when you want it.
PRESUMING that you want deals and you want them now. If so, read on.
Your estate liquidator usually has between two and four days to liquidate an entire estate. Many of us have a team of people helping us and we have been diligently setting up, marketing and researching our sale for several days or weeks before we open for your shopping pleasure. We might be a tad stressed out and sleep deprived before the sale, but we are excited that you are there. We want to sell out and we want our customers and the client who hired us to liquidate their property both to be happy with the results.
We work on commission and we have been hired by the estate to maximize their proceeds.
So here are handy tips to help you get a great deal as an estate sale shopper:
- Do follow our system. Every liquidator has a system for getting you in the door. Some let a whole group in at once no matter how many are there to encourage a frenzy, some keep greater control with numbers or lists. Don't stand in our line telling us how someone else does it or what you think we should be doing instead of what we are doing. If you really have a suggestion, make it in private. Yelling at us while we are opening up is not going to put you in good standing or snag you a spot on our good deal list. If you expect any kind of deal after yelling at us in front of all of our other shoppers, you are going to be disappointed.
- Do offer to help. We might arrive early with equipment to carry in, or tables to set up at the last minute, or numbers to pass out to your fellow shoppers. Folks who ask me if I need any help are always appreciated. Even if I say "No, I have it covered," I still noticed who seems like they are paying attention and willing to make things a little easier.
- Do give us space. If we are still getting things ready, don't crowd us, we often need an hour before the sale to set up last minute items or hang signs. We are focused on these details, so coming over and asking us all your questions while we are trying to do other things is just not appreciated. Sorry.
- Know when to ask. I always appreciate it when someone calls or writes ahead and asks about their items or concerns rather than showing up and needing instructions at the opening bell. For example, if you want to know if we do pre-sales or if we can ship items or where something is physically located. We are busy right before a sale, but if you have never been to a sale or had a bad experience at another sale and I can answer your concerns BEFORE you get in line on opening day, I want to. Some companies won't have time to answer any questions before a sale and some just don't as policy, but in my case, I do my best to address your concerns before we arrive. If you want to know something I can't answer before a sale, I will let you know that. Also, knowing specific items that people are interested in is helpful, if I know 7 shoppers are dying to get their hands on a fragile piece of glass, I am going to better be able to keep it protected during the first rush of sale - which means it is less likely to be damaged and more likely to go home with you!
- Do be discrete. Yelling out that my prices are too high or you will give me half of what I am asking for something is going to result in an immediate refusal. If other shoppers hear me give you that discount, they are all going to expect similar treatment, and you have set me up to haggle all day or to lose half my proceeds. If half off really is your best offer, let us know discretely and ask us what we can do. Worst case scenario for you is that I will let you know at what point I think I might be able to accept your price or I will tell you how to leave an offer. Best case scenario is I might be able to accept your offer if you are discrete.
- Keep your word. If you ask me if I will accept a certain price on an item, and then change your mind after I say yes, I am not going to take you seriously in the future. And don't be the person who stacks up their pile and says they are buying it only to ask me for a discount later when they are ready to pay. If you tell me you are buying it, I am expecting you to be buying it at the price we have on it or at that day's discount, if applicable. If you are buying a lot and are expecting additional discounts for buying a lot, you need to talk to me about it before you make a huge pile of goodies and keeping other shoppers from the opportunity to buy. This is frowned upon and you may be costing me a sale at the price I wanted. You wouldn't want to do that to me, right?
- Make sense. Does it make sense to ask me my best price on something and then argue with me to get an even better price after I answered your inquiry with my best price? No, it makes no sense. If I tell you my best price is $30, don't counter at $25. If you don't want to pay $30, then don't. If you don't want to know my best price, then don't ask for it.
- Don't be silly. Don't ask me silly questions like what is the least I will take for something. When I hear that question I think, "What is the most you will pay for it?" Do you want me to ask you that every time I see you from now on?
- Don't compare. Our sales are not garage sales or thrift stores. We are selling a person's lifetime of treasures and a family's heirlooms. This is not a bunch of junk that has been sitting around unwanted in the garage, you might have once found the same item I have in the garage sale of a person who didn't know an item's value, but don't tell me my prices are too high and that you can buy sterling rings, or gold necklaces for .25 cents at a garage sale. These aren't things that have been donated for free, again, don't be silly and tell me what something costs at a thrift store, you aren't at a thrift store.
- Research besmirch. The item you are looking up on your phone, has already been researched by me. If you want me to price match ebay, consider the shipping costs, the risk of an online sale and the value of a first hand examination of what you are buying.
- Spread the word. Let your friends and neighbors know about us. We appreciate that and bringing in new customers is great justification for giving you a great deal every now and then.
- Don't argue with me. If I have to collect sales tax or have a system you don't like, arguing with me is not going to get you anywhere. I run a business and I have to follow laws and policies, don't waste everyone's time trying to get me to waive your sales tax - would you do that at any other store? Then don't do it here either.
- Don't hide inventory. If I catch you trying to hide something so you can come back later for it at a discount, or worse yet, trying to hide a good item under a pile of low end things and telling me all you have is "just junk" at checkout - I will never forget that and I am not going to want to be doing you any favors on pricing. I might even ban you from my sales.
- Don't be difficult or make a mess. Pulling tags, switching tags, and the like are things we notice. Tearing up a stack of neatly folded linens and leaving them a mess is not cool. You are disrupting my sale and making more work for me. If you take a $20 price tag off something and then ask me how much it is, the price is going up to $30 to make up for the extra work you just created.
- Do be our eyes and ears. If you spot someone trying to steal, switching labels, or taking more than they paid for, or hiding treasures let us know discretely who it is and what they are up to.
- Move on. After a sale is over, unless you are interested in buying out the bulk contents, or entire categories, or a big ticket item, don't expect to keep shopping. If you saw a $10 blanket you liked and you didn't buy it then, EVEN if it is still available, I am not driving back to the estate to meet so I can add an extra $1 to my profit on the sale, I have other estates that need my attention. And if you made me an offer on a big item that is no longer available, don't bug me with questions about how much it did sell for or comments about how much you wanted it or would have paid. If you want it the time to buy it is during the sale.
- Manners count. Say, "Thanks." And remember smiling is my favorite, it goes a long way.
We got our 4 year old her bike almost 6 months ago. We found it for maybe $10 and peeled all the super ugly stickers off of it. She was happy with our thrifty find but she had wanted a green bike. So we took her to our store and let her pick out a Country Chic Paint shade of green - she opted for Luscious Lime. We painted her bike and it gets Tough Coat next. I am sure it will get some scrapes with time, but the original factory finish has scrapes too, so what the heck, live a little. Vivian helped with the project so we have some paint on the wheels, seat and driveway but she LOVES her new bike makeover.
We just updated our Thumbtack profile. You can check out our reviews here and write one of your own. Thank you for helping us and telling potential customers about our services.
Join us and have fun while learning to use Country Chic Chalk & Mineral paint. We will be painting frames and mason jars (your choice!) using 2 colors and finishing off with wax. You will learn distressing techniques, color dynamics and waxing. After the class you will be ready to revive and chic up your home with Country Chic Paint!
All supplies are included in the class. Classes are $75 and you get to bring home the project you made.
Plus you will receive 10% off on all paint orders on the day of the class! The class fee is due at registration. The class cost is non-refundable, but transferable to a future class if you must cancel. Class size is limited to 6 people and you will get $5 off if you refer a friend!
Our first set of classes are scheduled for:
- Thurs Sept 18th 3-6pm
- Sat Oct 11th 1-4pm
- Tues Oct 21st 11am-2pm
- Sat Nov 8th 1-4pm
To enroll call us at 661-823-1635, email us at LA@expertestates.com or stop by the store at 151 N Mill Street in Tehachapi!
Rancho Cucamonga, Expert Estates is selling contents of the home of Former NFL New Orleans Saints Player Sedrick Ellis! Ellis is a former Defensive Tackle who retired in his late 20s. His home is filled to the brim with top of the line designer furniture, art, electronics and more - most in like new condition. Estate sales are not just for dusty old home, you can find everything from high end property to antiques to everyday kitchenware. Anyone who wants to little piece of history should visit - now is the chance to buy from an NFL player’s personal collection.
Thomasville + Stanley Furniture and Lamps,
Home Theater Chairs, Screen + Projector
Marble and wood dining buffets
Mirrors, art, prints and paintings
Foosball & Air Hockey Tables
Flat Screen TVs
Solid mahogany office furniture
Leather Club and Office Chairs
Marble Coffee Table
LG Front Loading Washer and Dryer
Amazing Thomasville Master Bedroom Sets
Dressers and armoires
Electronics, Play Stations,
Size 3x clothes belonging to Mr. Ellis
LG Refrigerator and more!
Event Hours: 9am-3pm
Dates: Fri-Sun Aug 15-17, 2014
Location: 5483 Stoneview Dr. Rancho Cucamonga