Frequently Asked Questions
When should I consider an estate sale?
• The personal property of a family member needs to be liquidated following death.
• Downsizing or moving presents the need to sell household contents, sometimes quickly.
• Divorce, separation, or major lifestyle change result in the need to sell possessions.
What are the advantages of an on-site sale?
An estate sale on-site often results in higher sales results than other means of liquidation. Your items are more appealing and likely to sell when displayed in a home setting. An on-site sale also offers the convenience of no packing or moving of the items to be liquidated.
What if I prefer not to have the sale in my home?
Depending on the size of the inventory, Silvey Estate Sales may be able to combine your items with others in a consignment sale. We’re also able to advise you of additional options for consigning or selling your property.
May we continue to live in the house during preparation and duration of the sale?
For various reasons, most estate sale companies, including ours, will not accept sales with residents living in the home. While it is the client’s choice as to whether to attend the sale, we advise against it, based on experience.
How do I know whether I have enough for an estate sale?
We’ll help you determine that. If, for example, you’re downsizing or moving to assisted living, and will be taking some furnishings and household items with you, there may be an opportunity to sell your remaining possessions along with those of other clients in the same situation. Consignment sales involving several individuals usually offer a wide, interesting array of items and are popular with estate sale customers.
What do I need to do before the sale?
Silvey Estate Sales asks that if at all possible, clients and their family members choose which items they wish to keep before our initial appointment with you. Our decision as to whether we’re able to accept the sale is based in large part on the property in the home designated for liquidation. If numerous and/or valuable items are removed after our initial appointment, it can have a significant effect on the sale outcome. Should clients choose to remove items at any time following contractual agreement, Silvey Estate Sales policy is to charge its agreed upon commission on those items.
Other than personal papers, documents, and trash, please don’t throw anything away before consulting with us. Things you might not consider useful or attractive often are to someone else. Many people are surprised at what people buy at estate sales.
What commission do you charge?
Silvey Estate Sales commission for services is a percentage of the final sales results. The rate of commission is determined by the scope of the project, condition of the property, distance, required logistics, and any special challenges presented.
Once we’ve assessed your particular situation, we can better inform you of both commission and other costs you may face.
In addition, certain fee-based services may be required or requested by the client. These include, for example, the temporary need for a dumpster, armed, uniformed security, or a full and final cleanout of the sale premises.
When are Silvey Estate Sales usually held?
Our sales usually run during daytime hours, Thursday through Saturday, 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. However, each sale is unique and dates and hours are determined accordingly. Larger sales may include additional days and hours. Normally, full price is charged for items on the first day of the sale, with a 25 percent discount on the second day, and 50 percent discount on the final day. Should a large amount of inventory remain at the conclusion of the third day, we sometimes offer clients the option of offering a fourth, final closeout day at a higher discount.
What happens to items left at the end of the sale?
The client may wish to distribute items to family or friends, but most choose to donate useable unsold property. Silvey Estate Sales can recommend several Tulsa charitable institutions which resell to the public to benefit their programs. Dated computer equipment, for example, is donated to local agencies such as 501technet, which refurbishes and redistributes devices to nonprofits and schools, or to a local recycling agency. Clients receive donation documentation.
Does your company require a contract?
To protect the interests of both client and company, Silvey Estate Sales provides a standard legal contract for both estate sales and personal property appraisals, which specifies obligations, agreements and other conditions surrounding the transaction.
What about security?
We take great care, as much as possible, to protect the privacy of clients and to not publicize the address of their home until immediately before the sale. Security is as important to us as it is to you. Our staff are trained to not only assist customers, but also to keep a watchful eye for the less than honest few who may visit. In certain situations, we restrict the flow of customers during a sale as a security precaution, and monitor exits. A client may also request armed, uniformed security personnel to be on the premises during certain hours of the sale, at client expense. Quality jewelry, guns and other items of particular value are always secured and fully attended during the sale.
How do you price items in the sale?
With the intent to sell the highest possible percentage of inventory and maximize proceeds, we price items in terms of fair market value in today’s Tulsa area marketplace, and in consideration of a short-span liquidation period. We have the knowledge and expertise to research both national and international marketing opportunities for more valuable items. Collecting, decorating, and buying trends are subject to change – for example, some items go out of style, or become technologically or functionally obsolete, lowering their value. Sometimes, clients understandably consider their property worth more than it may be. If you have questions about our pricing decisions, we’re happy to discuss the reasoning behind them.
Do you charge sales tax?
We comply with state, county and city laws by collecting state and local sales tax on all items sold, with the exception of those dealers who provide a current sales tax exemption document prior to transaction. The percentage charged depends on the jurisdiction.
How do you advertise sales?
Silvey Estate Sales markets its sales extensively through our website, specialized, internet estate sale marketing sites, social media, Craig’s List, an ever-growing email list, print media, advertising in other local media, and more. We also post professionally produced directional signage in the vicinity of the sale.
May I let some of my friends come in to buy first?
In fairness to our many valued, loyal customers, Silvey Estate Sales does not offer sales preview opportunities, nor do we negotiate pricing during a sale.
What is a personal property appraisal and when do people need one?
Appraisals of personal property belonging to individuals are often requested or recommended for the following reasons:
• Settlement of an estate for tax purposes
• Equitable distribution of property among heirs
• Distribution of marital property in divorce
• Insurance coverage to cover potential loss
• Charitable donation
• Desire to know the value of one’s personal property
Certain members of Silvey Estate Sales’ staff are educated and experienced in the methodology and standards of professional appraisal practice. Glenda Silvey is a former member of International Society of Appraisers (ISA) and completed its Core Course in Appraisal Studies as well as the course in Uniform Standards of Professional Appraisal Practice. She recently rejoined ISA at its Candidate for Membership level while she refreshes her credentials through required and additional ISA courses. Our staff is qualified to conduct personal property appraisals for the functions listed above, and deliver reports in compliance with professional standards.