Can I auction my furniture?

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by klmno, Aug 5, 2010.

  1. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    I'm just wondering...I want to get the little stuff out (at least most of it) within the next few days then start on bigger stuff- which means furniture. If I left it, it would probably end up being auctioned. So I'm wondering if instead of having a moving sell where people walk thru and say "will you take this for it", could I ask them to write name, phone number, and what they'd be willing to pay and drop it in a box so I could call the highest bidder the next day?
  2. Marcie Mac

    Marcie Mac Just Plain Ole Tired

    If you leave your stuff in the house, they will not auction it off, they will call haulers to take it to the dump-its a big business in Ca to go to foreclosed homes. SO helps a friend who hauls for storage places when people don't pay their storage bills - anymore with the economy, they have very few bidders on the units and they are pretty much busy all week hauling stuff to the dump - its not all trash - some of it is really nice but don't have the time or room to bring it home and put it up on Craigs list

    I think as far as a moving sale, it would be better to strike while the iron is hot and you have someone right there. Giving them a chance to walk away and think about it, or going to another garage sale where they may find something better might be a waste of time It it comes down to it, maybe with the left over stuff, a call to Goodwill or Veterans place to come and take it - at least you will get a tax deduction for the stuff

  3. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Are they actually going to come prepared and with helpers to move furniture though?
  4. Marcie Mac

    Marcie Mac Just Plain Ole Tired

    When I called I told them I had some furniture and they came with two people to move it. Also, if you have like a washer or fridge, check with your electric company - ours gives you 50.00 each for old appliances. X took his old ones direct to the recycler and got money for them (scrap metal) He didn't have a truck but checked with the neighbors and found one that would help him in exchange with gas money. For getting rid of clothes that are still in good shape, look for a consignment store.

  5. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    If you have nice furniture first try calling a furniture dealer to come and look at it. If nothing else you will get an idea of how much it might be worth. You might try antique or vintage furniture places. We have a friend who does estate sales and has an antique shop. If they wanted to purchase stuff they might have to come back later or the next day if they purchase more than they can take at that time.

    Otherwise I would say a moving sale would be your best bet. A bid by auction probably isn't going to get much interest. Bids won't be legally binding, or so I would assume. People who want/need furniture would make an offer but go look at other places also. If they saw something they liked, or just changed their mind (very common) then when you called you would get either no answer or they would say they changed their mind.

    If you want to have an auction, find a reputable auctioneer and follow their advice/directions. Auctions really are NOT DIY events, not unless you really know the business. There is a LOT that goes into a successful auction and most of it is stuff you probably are not aware of. There are also legalities involved with auctions in most places, which might end up causing hassles or even bigger problems.

    People who buy furniture at yard sales are usually prepared to either take it with them or set up a time in a day or so to pick it up. People who run estate sales often have people with trucks and/or trailers on hand to move furniture for an extra fee.
  6. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    OK, then I guess I'll just stick with a moving sale but I'm running across too many people changing their minds. I haven't had a single problem with someone trying to rip me off or steal (*knock on wood*) but people have promised to buy something like the piano, I hold it for a few days, then never hear from them again. And the latest is this guy who paid $25 deposit on it, then acted like he was going to pick it up and move it by himself- how clueless can he be? So then he runs out the door with the bench to it saying he's taking it for the deposit he just gave me. Well, how long do I sit here and waste time waiting for him to come back and pay and get the rest of it?

    So if I have a moving sell and list a price and add "OBO" and wait for a few days and they haven't come to pay and get it, then what do I do? Would it be appropriate and ok to at least keep a list of people's names and offers and contact info? I'm not in a position to let this go on forever.
  7. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    K I realize you're in a tight spot and want to get the most money you can for your belongings that you're willing to part with but I don't think you will generate a lot, if any, interest in having folks bid on your furniture.

    The best you can do is price the items realistically (think what you would be willing to pay for them) and stand firm if you feel you have to. But when people are shopping for used furniture they are usually looking for a good deal. And it is true that someone may place a bid on your item and then go find a better deal at a tag sale and then when you call them, they are not interested and you're back at square one-trying to sell your stuff.

    Either look on your local pennysaver or flyer for people who buy entire estates or have your own estate sale. Another option is to run an ad listing the items for sale with your phone number or place them on facebook or craigslist.

    Good luck, hon, I can tell you're overwhelmed. Hugs
  8. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    You can, but you'll sell it for pennies on the dollar.
  9. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    If someone comes to your sale and wants to buy the item, but cannot move it then, they MUST pay for the item before they leave. Not leave a deposit. If they have to go get cash, give them 30 minutes. After that if someone wants it, and has cash, sell it to them. If they give you a deposit of $30 or whatever, write out a contract in pen that the $30 is to hold the bed for thirty minutes/1hour so that they can go get cash and return to pay for the item. After the time period is up the item will again be available for sale and the deposit will be returned to the other party as long as he returns before 7 pm on whatever the date is. Have ALL of that written into the contract (write out a couple and keep them on hand before the sale, to have the blanks filled in when needed). Insist that both of you sign it, in pen, and if possible have someone you know witness it. It protects you both. YOU keep the contract with the deposit.

    Otherwise you might get a deposit and hold the item when other people might be interested in it. By the time that guy flakes out and you know it, the sale would be over. IF someone pays and doesn't come pick it up, make sure they KNOW that you will be leaving the furniture outside when you go to bed. If it is stolen it is THEIR problem for not picking it up in a timely manner.

    IF someone really wants it, and it is being held for someone, by all means take their names. Let them know the time that the hold expires and call them promptly if the first deal falls through.
  10. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    Ok, I guess I'll just make sure that it's clear in the ad that they need to come prepared to move it then. It won't be in the yard- I certainly can't move it. I'm having problems listing things on crai**list from a computer that isn't my home computer- it doesn't like me trying to use my account name and PW from this one. If it's not one thing, it's another....

    At least I was able to back up my resume on a CD from here by going to an old email I'd sent out with my resume attached.

    I wonder if I can make enough this weekend to get a used laptop that I can use at home then just take with me. Will I have to worry about someone trying to steal something like that from me at transitional housing?
  11. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I think as far as a moving sale, it would be better to strike while the iron is hot and you have someone right there. Giving them a chance to walk away and think about it, or going to another garage sale where they may find something better might be a waste of time

    I agree.
    Best of luck. I hope you can make a decent amt of $ and then make a good plan for the future.
  12. DDD

    DDD Well-Known Member

    I know that you are trying to juggle too many balls at one time. You have my sympathy for real. Regarding the furniture and clothing they are a number of consignment stores even in our small area. If you don't feel you can
    handle much more at this time what about calling a storage place to take the valuables until you have a more settled future. Maybe then you could exhale a bit. Good luck. DDD
  13. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    That's a good idea about the clothing- I need that table back that I've got the clothing on so I can pull more stuff out of the closets- linens and so forth. I'm actually not selling furniture on the same days as the yard sale. This allows dogs to be kept in house while yard sale is going on (main part of house I should say), and putting them in difficult child's old game room with the yard sale stuff while I show furniture in the main part of the house. So, furniture on weekdays by appointment., "stuff" on weekends. LOL!

    So much time was wasted filling out paperwork and meeting with people last Thurs. and Fri, then cops, PO, and court mostly Mon. and Tues, then undoing what I did Thurs and Fri this Tues. and Wed., then meeting to form a new plan yesterday and getting paperwork I need to complete for this current plan so I can turn it in Monday.

    Yep, I'm a juggling yo-yo right now, DDD!!

    I'll touch base with you Ladies tomorrow after my sale. Thanks for the ideas- keep them coming!
  14. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    I know you want to do the furniture and other stuff separately, but that will shoot you in the foot. You will have buyers there and not showing them the furniture means that is it FAR less likely to sell, much less to sell at your asking price.

    Keep the furniture in the house and let the dogs loose in the house. If someone wants to see the furniture, you go in first to put up the dogs and then show the furniture. It will mean the furniture is seen by more people and if Tom, Rick and Mary each don't want any furniture, they WILL go and tell Sherry, Ron and Paula because they are each looking for a certain item that you have for sale.

    Having separate sales for this will whittle down the number of potential buyers.