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1For most people, spring and summer are the times of the year most closely associated with yard sales and garage sales, mainly because of the warmer, sunnier weather, and also because those are the times of the year when people are more likely to perform a little “spring cleaning” of their attics, basements and garages to clear out their excess items. The weather also tends to be more pleasant (and more stable), and that means people are more likely to look for ways to be outdoors on a weekend, enjoying the sunny weather and maybe snapping up a few bargains in the process.
That’s great for buyers – but for sellers, the spring and summer can be pretty competitive when it comes to getting the most for your stuff. And from a seller’s perspective, hosting a sale during the winter months can be a really good way of getting the most interest, the most buyers, and the most cash for unwanted items.

During winter months there’s less competition, and that means buyers have fewer places to look for great deals. As a result, hosting a sale now means more people will attend your sale and items will sell faster and with less bargaining. Plus, during the winter, kids are in school, so you’re likely to have more interest if your sale includes a weekday like Friday in addition to one or more weekend days.

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And there’s another benefit: Because they’re less common, winter sales have a psychological advantage over the more commonplace sales of spring and summer. Winter sales are “rarer,” and that means buyer enthusiasm and interest can be at an all-time peak, making sales more fun and exciting. After all, who doesn’t like a little bargain-shopping to break up the gray days and monotony of winter?
But what about the weather? Yes, outdoor venues benefit from the warmer, milder weather of spring and summer, but with an estate sale, you don’t have to worry about cold, damp weather turning buyers away from your sale. Instead, your buyers can shop indoors in comfort without worrying about the weather.

3Of course, hosting a successful winter estate sale doesn’t just “happen” – it takes planning and expertise to make sure your sale attracts the attention of as many people as possible, and then delivers on what it promises. And that’s where Attics to Basements Estate Sales comes in. As a leading estate sale company in the Greater Dallas area, we help sellers orchestrate their sales from start to finish, from determining which items to sell and for how much to advertising the sale so it gets plenty of exposure to setting up the sale and hosting it, we do it all. Plus, we can arrange for appraisals for antiques and other costly items, and we even clean up afterward. If you’re ready to capitalize on all those eager winter buyers, give us a call and let us help you host a great sale right now so you can relax and enjoy your spring and summer months, and maybe have a little extra cash for a few warm-weather splurges.

Holiday Debt? Sell Your Stuff! Posted January 15, 2017

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1janThe fun and excitement of the holidays are over, the decorations are all put away – but there’s still one lingering memory of the 2016 holiday season: The credit card debt left from all those overindulgences that tend to go hand-in-hand with holiday merrymaking. Statistics show the average person added nearly $1,000 of new debt on their credit cards this past holiday season, and by the time they pay it off, the added interest could mean they’re paying hundreds more.

Those Pesky Resolutions!

Of course, all that holiday debt comes home to roost at just about the same time as we’re making our New Year’s resolutions to save money, be debt-free and live a more organized life. It’s like we’ve broken our resolutions as soon as we’ve made them. But guess what? There’s a solution that can help you achieve BOTH those resolutions at the same time – and best of all, you hardly have to do anything to accomplish it. What’s the solution? Sell your stuff. After all, not only does selling your stuff help you pay off those credit card bills, it also helps you declutter and organize your space and your life – win-win!
Now for the excuses:

But I don’t have any stuff to sell.

2janNonsense. An article in the L.A. Times reports the average American household contains about 300,000 items, and lots of those items are crammed in closets, cupboards, basements and attics, just taking up space. Other items are cluttering up bookcases, china cabinets and bureaus. What do they all have in common? They can all be turned into cash that can help you pay down your debts and improve your overall financial picture.

It’s not yard sale season.

That’s right! And that means now is the perfect time to sell. Why? First, there’s less competition – fewer sales means your own sale can attract more people. And second, it’s been months since the height of yard sale season, and that means people are craving deals. Supply is low and demand is high – what could be better?

I don’t have time to host a sale, let alone prepare for it.3jan

Guess what? You don’t have to. At Attics to Basements, we do all that work for you, from advertising to pricing items to hosting the actual sale – all the way through the clean-up at the end. We eve provide the bags and wrappings. All you have to do is collect your money at the end.

I’m out of excuses. What’s the next step?

The next step is easy too – give us a call at 469-396-4696 or shoot us an email at mwhitneyp@gmail.com and we’ll help you get started. Buh-bye, debt!

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Buy it and sell it: 5 ways to make some extra holiday cash

Yes, having your own estate sale is a good way to make money for the holidays; but what if you don’t have a lot of stuff to sell? You can still make estate sales work for you by looking for sought-after items at local sales, then reselling them online for a quick profit. Here are five items with great holiday resell potential to help you see a little more green this holiday season.

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Jewelry: Jewelry is, and probably forever will be, one of the most popular gift ideas for pretty much any occasion, and buying and selling costume or fine jewelry is a great way to turn a profit during the holiday season. Look for vintage pieces, classic watches, designer items or birthstone jewelry for the biggest “bang for your buck” and make sure any items you buy are in great shape. If it comes with a box, so much the better, but you can also get boxes from ebay and some dollar stores to increase the chances of a quick sale.

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Game systems and video games: Not everyone is into the latest releases; in fact, today there are more people than ever before turning to vintage game systems and games. If possible, ask for a demonstration of the system to ensure it powers on and loads games. Even if a game system isn’t in pristine shape, it can still bring a good price among collectors and those who make a living fixing up and reselling systems.

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Buying and selling popular-to-collect Collectibles and collections: Buying and selling popular-to-collect items like action figures, sports memorabilia (Go Cowboys!), model cars, childhood toys from the 1970s through the 1990s, vintage fashion and, of course, Star Wars collectibles are all hot, and in pristine shape, these items can fetch top dollar. Doing a little homework and finding out which items are selling on ebay – and for how much – can help you develop a money-making strategy.

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DIY items: If you’re handy with a paintbrush, estate sales can be great places to find furniture and other items that can be creatively restored with chalk or blackboard paint (Pinterest is your friend!), or offer to personalize items like jewelry boxes or children’s chairs through an ad on Craigslist.

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Vintage holiday décorVintage holiday décor: Christmas ornaments, creepy-looking elves, glittery “Putz” houses and other decorations from the 1960s and earlier are hot right now. Even if you don’t sell them, they make great gifts and you can always use them in your own home and try selling them again next season. If you plan to sell on ebay (where you’ll get the best prices), buy early to leave plenty of time for shipping.

Even if your reselling plans don’t make you a fortune, you might still earn enough to offset those January credit card bills – and who knows? You might even discover a new career!

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Forget Black Friday: Make Estate Sales Part of Your Holiday Shopping Tradition

For millions of shoppers, Black Friday marks the kick-off for this season’s holiday shopping, with shoppers of all ages sprinting from one store to the next to score bargains on gifts for friends and family members. And unless you’re a diehard shopper, you’re probably not looking forward to ridiculously long lines, overcrowded parking lots, or the pushing, shoving and downright rudeness of your fellow shoppers. Then there’s the ridiculously early start time you need to adhere to if you hope to get any of the best deals. Plus, no matter how great your “score” is, there’s a good chance the gifts you’re buying are fairly predictable. In short, Black Friday can help you save some money, but you pay a big price in terms of convenience and hassle.

So how can you avoid all those headaches while still getting great deals on really one-of-a-kind, unique and personal gifts? By hitting up some local estate sales.

Make Estate Sales Part of Your Holiday Shopping Tradition
Attics to Basements estate sales over lots of advantages over Black Friday shopping. First, they start at normal times – there’s no need to line up hours in advance to get great deals. Second, you can count on a much more relaxed shopping experience, with a friendly sales staff ready to help if you need it. And perhaps most importantly, estate sales are sources of one-of-a-kind gifts you just can’t find at any mall, online retailer or “brick-and-mortar” store, which means your gifts are sure to surprise and delight any lucky recipient. It’s a much more personal, more thoughtful way to give.

Of course, estate sales can also be good places to find holiday decorations or funny, “oh-my-gosh-where-did-you-find-THAT” white elephant gifts, as well as smaller items to stuff stockings or fill out gift baskets. And don’t forget: Buying gifts from an estate sale is the environmentally-friendly way to shop, which means you can really feel good about the items you buy.

spending your day rushing around from one place to anotherOne more great benefit of doing at least some of your holiday shopping at an estate sale: It’s family-friendly, too. Because you’re not spending your day rushing around from one place to another, you can afford to spend a little extra time enjoying a pre-sale breakfast or stopping for a holiday lunch afterward. Involve your kids, your mom, your sister-in-law – even your spouse. Make it part of your family’s holiday tradition, and make your holidays more unique, more special and more memorable.

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Selecting an Estate Sale Company: 7 Steps to Making the Best Choice

There are lots of factors that contribute to a successful estate sale, but one of the most important is the company you hire to promote and handle your sale. If you’re considering an estate sale, here are a few tips to help you select the best estate sale company:

Do your homework. Before you even start looking for an estate sales company, take some time to learn more about what an estate sale is and how it works. You can read all about estate sales on our blog, and if you have more questions, we’re just a click away.

Go online. The internet is a great place to find out about estate sale companies in your area, and visiting companies’ websites can help give you an idea of the types of services they offer and the fees they charge.

Set up a meeting. Estate sale companies can answer many questions over the phone or via email, but to get a complete picture of the company, what they do and the services they offer, you’ll need to meet in person. During the meeting, the company representative will need to view the items you’re interested in selling in order to give you a clearer picture of what you can expect, including any fees that may be associated with your sale. You can also get a good idea of how professional the company is during your meeting.

Ask lots of questions, Attics to Basements Estate Sales CompanyAsk lots of questions. Before meeting with any estate sale company, think about all the questions you want to ask and write them down. Having all your questions in writing ensures you won’t forget any concerns or issues you want to discuss, and if you’re comparing more than one company, having a list of questions lets you compare both companies fairly and effectively.

 
Ask for references. Established, successful companies should be able to provide you with at least a few references so you can learn what other customers’ experiences have been like. Follow up by going online to look for additional reviews.

Visit a sale. If you’re really interested in seeing how an estate sale company stacks up, visit one of their events and watch them in action. You can find a complete listing sales hosted by Attics to Basements on our events page.

Attics to Basements Estate Sale Company is just a click awayMake sure you have a contract – and read it carefully before signing. A contract spells out everyone’s obligations clearly so there are no misunderstandings, including the sale dates and times, the costs associated with the sale and other critical issues. Make sure you both have a copy of the contract once it’s signed, and do not hire a company that wants to hold your sale without a signed contract.

Follow these tips and you can enjoy a hassle-free estate sale from start to finish.

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Should You Have an Appraisal Before an Estate Sale?

In addition to helping you find new “homes” for items you no longer need or want, estate sales can be a great way to earn some extra cash. And like any sale, you want to be sure you get the most for your items – especially for those that might be valuable. Unfortunately, determining the value of many of the items we own is a skill most of us don’t possess. And every year, there’s at least one story about someone scoring an amazing deal at an estate sale, yard sale or thrift store, turning a few dollars’ investment into thousands of dollars (or more) profit. That’s great news for the lucky buyers – but for the sellers, not so much.
Should You Have an Appraisal Before an Estate Sale
If you’re planning an estate sale, one of the wisest things you can do is to have an appraiser review any items you believe might be of value. But what do you do if you’re not even sure which items might be valuable? How can you decide which of your possessions should be appraised? That’s when working with an experienced estate sale company like Attics to Basements is especially important.

At Attics to Basements, we’ve had loads of experience reviewing and assessing all kinds of items, from furniture and artwork to clothing and jewelry and everything in between. That means we’ve had a lot of success at determining which items should be appraised prior to sale to ensure our clients get the most money for their items. We work with top professional appraisers with extensive experience in assessing the current market values of a broad array of antiques and collectibles, and when a valuable item is identified, we can help you find the best way to sell that item to help ensure you receive the fairest price.

Of course, you could rely on guidebooks to antiques and collectibles, and there are plenty of websites devoted to collectibles and what to look for to help determine if a specific item might be valuable. But those sources are hardly foolproof, and even then, assessing an item based solely on a written guide is hardly infallible.
Determining the Value of many of the Items
For the most accurate and reliable results – and the most peace of mind – having a professional appraisal is the way to ensure you get the value you deserve for your antiques and collectibles.

To learn more about the appraisal process and all the services Attics to Basements provides for its clients, call us today at 469-396-4696 or send us an email at mwhitneyp@gmail.com and we’ll be in touch.

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DIY Estate Sales: Should You Host Your Own?

Hosting your own estate sale can be a good way to make money, but it can also be extremely time-consuming. Like traditional yard sales and garage sales, estate sales require a lot of time to gather items, organize them, price them and display them – and that’s all before the actual sale takes place. Add to that the time it takes to research the worth of potentially valuable items, and most people find they spend many, many hours before the event even begins.

Few Customers Means Fewer Sales

Another headache: Making sure the sale is properly advertised to bring in the most buyers. Slapping up a sign in the front yard or putting up an ad on Craigslist can bring in a handful of buyers, but to really draw in a crowd, you need to know where your target market is looking and how to gain their attention. In fact, holding an estate sale is a lot like opening up a tiny, temporary retail establishment, and if you don’t have the skills or the experience to pull it off, you could wind up missing out on a substantial amount of money.
More Profits, Less Hassle
Of course, if money isn’t your object, hosting your own estate sale could make sense – but if you’re not interested in earning some extra cash, why not just donate the items? The fact is, pretty much everyone can use some extra cash, and it just makes sense to optimize the amount of cash your estate sale can bring in.

But beyond preparing and advertising, estate sales also require you to be on hand for several hours, usually spread out over at least a couple of days. If you already have a full-time job, that means one whole weekend will be spent managing the sale. And of course in addition to handling the cash from buyers, you’ll also need to be ready to answer questions, wrap and box items and just be on hand in case any issues crop up. Just about any way you look at it, hosting an estate sale can quickly turn into a real hassle, especially if your advertising efforts wind up bringing in only a trickle of customers.

More Profits, Less Hassle

Few Customers Means Fewer Sales
Attics to Basements was formed to help would-be sellers handle all these issues and more, with a dedicated team of experienced sellers who understand all the ins and outs of estate sales, from the pre-sale planning, appraising and pricing to day-of-sale responsibilities like dealing with customers, wrapping purchases and even motivating customers to buy additional related items when possible. Plus, we know just where, how and when to advertise sales to draw not just the most customers, but the right kind of customers who are truly interested in what you’re selling.

Getting started is easy, too: Just give us a call at 469-396-4696, shoot us an email or use our online contact form and we’ll do the rest. It’s the easy, no-stress, no-hassle path to extra cash and less clutter.

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Before Your Estate Sale: 6 Tips to Get Ready

In our last blog post, we looked at how having a professional estate sale can make your relocation plans a lot simpler and less stressful. If you’ve never had an estate sale before, you may be wondering what you need to do beforehand to help your sale be as successful as possible. The truth is, at Attics to Basements, we do most of the work so you can relax. But there are a few things you can do ahead of time to help the process move more quickly:

6 Tips for a Smooth Estate Sale

• First, you’ll want to identify any items you do NOT wish to have sold. Ideally, you should place these items in a separate area that can be closed off and secured from buyers or boxed up and put in storage.

• If you have any items you believe may be valuable, set them aside and we can arrange to have them appraised. We can also use our own expertise to identify items that may have significant value and arrange to have them appraised as well.

• Although it’s not necessary, it’s a good idea to hang around while we organize and price items. Not only will you be available to answer item-related questions that could help us get a better price, but you can also provide “back stories” for some items that can help establish a provenance (a fancy word for the history of an item that can add to its overall value).

• Forget about cleaning up before we get there. At Attics to Basements, we know moving can be a busy time. It’s our job to help you by getting rid of items that can’t be sold and generally organizing the space. If you’re holding your sale right before you move, you can go ahead and get rid of food, medicines and other personal products and consumables.

• Make sure you’ve removed any paperwork, especially documents with your personal information, from books, file cabinets, bureaus or other furniture or containers you’re planning to sell. Our team will go over everything and dispose of papers left behind or set them aside for you, but it always helps to have a second set of eyes.

• If you’re still living in your home, on the day of the sale it’s a good idea to have other plans. Seeing personal items sold can be emotional for some people, and there may be some temptation to haggle with buyers. Besides, you’ve hired us to handle the sale, so it’s time for you to relax!
Attics to Basements Estate Sales TIPS
One more tip: Before any sale, you’ll receive a contract from Attics to Basements that spells out all the specifics, from the supplies we provide and how we conduct the organization, pricing and selling to how we collect our commission from the sale proceeds. Be sure to review the contract carefully and ask us any questions right away. We have plenty of experience in the estate sale industry, and we’re always ready to help our clients by providing them with the most complete information so they can feel confident in our services every step of the way.

Get started today.

Attics to Basements makes the estate sale process simple. If you’re planning to move or you just want to pare back your possessions, we can help. Call us today at 469-396-4696 or use our online contact form to find out more.

Spring cleaning your home? Posted April 13, 2016

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Estate sales are the stress-free way to turn clutter into cash

Spring has arrived, and for many people, that means it’s time for spring cleaning, that annual ritual that rids the home of dust and cobwebs so summer living can truly be easy. Even for those not inclined to take part in the spring cleaning tradition, spring is often the time when homeowners and renters pare down their possessions so their homes are more organized and less cluttered.

Even organized homes can stand some paring down when it comes to possessions: A survey published in the Los Angeles Times found the average American contains about 300,000 items. And all that clutter is contributing to a lot of mental distress, according to another study that showed that living in a cluttered home can be a major cause of chronic stress and even debilitating depression.

Estate sales are the stress-free wayBut once you’ve made the decision to de-clutter and divest your life of all that “stuff,” you need to decide the best way to get rid of it. It’s easy enough to dispose of trash and recyclables, but what about items that retain some value or are otherwise collectible? Garage sales are one solution, but for many people, the hassle of gathering items, grouping them together and pricing them can be overwhelming. Likewise, spending an entire day waiting for customers to arrive and then haggling with total strangers over the price of your items isn’t exactly a fun way to spend a day off.

Fortunately, estate sales can provide an alternative solution that can still help you turn your belongings into cash, but without the hassles and frustrations that generally occur with garage sales and yard sales. In an estate sale, a skilled team of professionals can price your items and arrange them for sale as well as deal with customers, leaving you free to spend your time as you like. Not familiar with the estate sale process?

Here’s what you can expect with an estate sale organized by Attics to Basements Estate Sales:

what you can expect with an estate sale organized by Attics to Basements Estate Sales• Before the sale, each item to be sold will be cleaned so it shows to its best advantage, then priced using customer input as well as our own team’s experience in pricing similar items. For items with significant value, an appraiser can be brought in.
• Our team will create a display space that’s designed to be attractive and to motivate customers to buy. We provide tables and display cases in addition to using those on hand.
• We’ll even advertise the sale on our website, to our list of email subscribers, and on other websites that serve the sale area to attract the greatest number of customers.
• And of course, we staff each estate sale with qualified sales professionals and limit the number of buyers in the home at any given time for a stress-free experience for sellers from start to finish. We even supply the bags and paper for wrapping fragile items!

As a bonded company, you’ll feel secure and confident in your sale, and payment for our services comes out of your proceeds to keep everything as simple as possible. It’s truly the hassle-free alternative to garage and yard sales.

To learn more about Attics to Basements and the services we provide, call us today at 469-396-4696 or use our online contact form and we’ll be in touch.

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The Hunt Is On: From One-of-a-kind Items to

Few things are as exciting as seeking out treasures in unexpected places, and few places are more chock full of treasures and unique wares than a local estate sale. Of course, everyone dreams of making that “big score” at an estate sale or yard sale – buying that unassuming painting that turns out to be an original creation by a famous artist, or snapping up a “copy” of the Declaration of Independence that turns out to be an original.

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Those kinds of rare finds are just that – rare – but that doesn’t mean you can’t find your own gems at an estate sale, or find just the right items to reflect your own unique sense of style. In fact, most estate sales are full of treasures that can help you make your home or work space more personalized and one-of-a-kind, or help fuel a hobby that can bring in some extra cash.

And unlike retail establishments where shelves are lined with mass-produced items you could find in anyone’s home – even your own neighbor’s – estate sales offer truly unique and one-of-a-kind items that can be used just as they are or, better still, “made over” with your own finishing touches. Adding even a few unique items to your home helps avoid the boredom and monotony that comes from buying your home straight from the retailer’s shelves, and it also eliminates the feelings of “decorating deja vu” that come from visiting homes with the same types of furnishings and accessories that you see everywhere else.

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And of course, that brings up another benefit that comes from haunting estate sales, and it’s a big one: Just about any sale – even those with a primary focus on more costly antiques – yields a treasure trove of inexpensive and budget-friendly items that can get your creative juices flowing. Don’t consider yourself the “creative type”? No problem – cruise sites like Pinterest or search for “trash to treasure,” “estate sale makeover,” or similar terms on Google. Even seemingly mundane items like mason jars, an old handkerchief collection, wooden boxes, costume jewelry – even old hardware hold a world of possibilities for remaking and refurbishing. And whether you come up with your own ideas or take a cue from Pinterest or other online sites, you have the feeling of having accomplished something that’s much more satisfying than simply ordering a ready-made piece from a traditional retail establishment.

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To get the most from your estate sale adventure, go with an open mind; you may think you know what you’re looking for, but once you arrive at the sale, you may find items that suit your purposes better or that inspire you to go in an entirely new direction. Bring small bills and change to make transactions simpler and boxes to cart your stuff around in. Be sure to arrive early, and remember – the thrill of the hunt is a big part of the estate sale experience, so most of all, have fun!