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Part II- Resale Realities: When to Sell

 July 2016

As the nation’s largest network of branded resale professionals, Caring Transitions® is here to help you understand when to sell, toss or donate your excess personal property.  Find answers about the market place in Part I of this Resale newsletter and find some general guidelines for downsizing and decluttering below!

Estate Sale:

When you are downsizing, an estate sale works best and can be quite profitable if you have a substantial volume of goods that have maintained their value in today’s market. Estate sales are typically very labor intensive, so a professional company, like Caring Transitions®, will give you an honest evaluation and let you know if an estate sale really makes sense for the items you are trying to sell. The estate sale industry is completely unregulated, so beware of companies who offer you a low rates that don’t seem to cover their hours and expenses.  Many companies reduce their costs by neglecting to price or advertise your items properly or they may not carry proper insurance and worker’s comp or they may hire untrained and unskilled labor.  Learn the “5 Questions to Ask Your Estate Sale Professional.” 

Online Auction:

There are currently over 600 online auction companies operating today and the industry continues to generate double digit growth. Clearly an online auction is an increasingly popular way to liquidate one’s personal items.  When your items are advertised online, they can be seen by more buyers than an estate sale and auctions are typically less cumbersome to manage. This can mean greater profits for you. The industry has worked to improve standards, reduce scams, develop bidding options, improve pay methods and vet vendors through licensing requirements. Yet, both buyers and sellers should remain aware of the risks involved. Caring Transitions®,  CT Online Auctions, is the only branded online auction company designed specifically for the local resale market, with nearly 200 pick-up locations, and trained, bonded and insured employees. Read more about online auction fraud precautions.   


Giving items to friends or family members can be a very meaningful gesture, but before you carefully wrap and ship that special item, take a moment to contemplate how the gift will be received by the other party. Is the item something they will treasure, or do you just think they should treasure it. If you decide they may not really appreciate the gift, you may decide to sell it yourself, choose a different recipient, find a club or organization who will appreciate the item more or send it anyway, with the understanding that once given, the disposition of your gift is entirely up to the recipient, even if it means they choose to sell or donate it themselves. 


If you have the ability to donate goods that are in good; clean condition, we encourage you to do so. Many of us just feel better when we know someone else is able to benefit from our cast-off items. The governments EPA website lists many good options for charities and recycling opportunities. Your local municipality may also post information on churches, hospitals, schools, libraries, animal shelters, homeless shelters, women’s shelters, halfway homes, food banks, senior centers, day care, prisons, and consignment shops.

Junk Removal:

If you have items that are simply worn out, water damaged, smoke damaged or covered with mold or mildew, your best bet is to find a way to discard or recycle the items. Many local junk hauling companies work hand-in-hand with smaller charities and recycling operations and will sort the items you’ve hired them to take away and distribute them appropriately. 

Moving and Storage:

As the nation’s “Senior Move Expert,” Caring Transitions® understands that families are not always ready to part with items that belong to a family member who has recently died.  In those cases, a mover or storage facility may hold onto the items while the house is being sold. Once time has passed the family may be better able to decide what should be sold, gifted or donated.

Part II- Resale Realities: When to Sell

By Nan Hayes for Caring Transitions®

Contact your Caring Transitions® office today to find the right solution for your household today!