Estate sales are a different environment than garage sales and yard sales. When you go to an estate sale, pretty much everything on the property will be for sale unless it's marked otherwise. In most cases, estate sales are hosted because the owner has passed away or is liquidating everything. Estate sales can be overwhelming, but when you have a plan ahead of time, you'll be able to navigate the sale with ease.
Be There Early
The earlier you arrive at the estate sale, the more items you'll have to choose from. And, some estate sales even allow early arrivals to walk through the sale and get an advanced look at what's there. In fact, most antique dealers and other collectors aim to be there early, which can cost you a chance at some of the best stuff if you don't show up until later.
Don't Rush Things
Make sure that you have plenty of time to shop the sale. Don't try to rush through things, because that's how you overlook great deals. Instead, you'll want to take your time and look through everything that's available. Check all of the boxes and bins that are part of the sale, because you never know what you're likely to find.
Always Have Cash
You'll want to be able to close the deal on anything you find right away. To do this, you'll want to have cash on hand. That way, you can negotiate and settle the purchase with ease. In fact, some estate sale managers might even be more willing to negotiate for cash in hand than they would for something they'd have to hold.
Bringing cash also allows you to set a budget and stick to it. When everything is done in cash, you don't run the risk of miscalculating or giving in to temptation and spending more than you can afford on something you've found.
Consider Returning on the Last Day
The last day of an estate sale often has the best deals, even if it has the most limited selection. This is the time to negotiate for that cool painting that hasn't sold yet, because the estate sale manager is likely looking to sell all of the remaining stuff, even if it means taking less than originally expected.
Estate sales aren't limited to collectors and dealers anymore. If you're interested in great deals, you can visit the local estate sales as well. In fact, with these tips, you'll handle the sale like an old pro, and you might be able to find some great deals.