“I know you paid $2,000 for it, but …”

If I had a dollar for every time I said this to a client, I would be a wealthy woman.  It is a difficult occupation being an estate expert who specializes in personal property.  They call it personal for a very good reason.  When people go to sell their items, everyone gets very personal about them and feels they might be worth a fortune.

As one who has handled tens of thousands of personal items in my tenure, I can assure you very few pieces actually have truly significant value.  I know you paid a considerable amount for that sofa, or candelabra, or sideboard, but in today’s market, that is a thing of the past.  It’s a hard pill to swallow, I know.

The truth is, when times are good, people simply pay too much for things.  Now, due to economic reasons, everyone is recycling personal property, buying at estate sales and auctions, and really saving a great deal of money not buying retail.  When we hear clients lamenting the fact that they paid $4000 for a sofa and today can only get $600 for it, they want to know why!

In a  nutshell, the styles have changed, the times have changed, younger women don’t like what the older women like, and we have too much supply of traditional furnishings as our older loved ones leave us.  The more supply that comes on the market, the lower the prices will go.

So, hold onto your hat when you go to sell your furniture or traditional items.  As hard as it may be to hear, remember … don’t shoot the messenger.  I’m just doing my job to prepare you!

© 2011 Julie Hall


One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Julie,

    I think you are right on target. I am a senior citizen and I see this happening everyday, especially living in a retired community. The furniture I now have is nice..for me…but I know a younger family would probably remodel everything in my house when it’s time to sell. Enjoy your articles immensely.

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