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Common Questions About Estate Sales

So you want to have an estate sale? Here are answers to some of the most common questions we hear at Sophia's Estate Sales.

So, you are thinking of having an estate sale!

You are retiring, downsizing, moving, and an executor of an estate. There are lots of circumstances that merit an estate sale, but where do you start? Miss Sophia has some advice.

Go to estate sales.

If this is your first time going to an estate sale, check some out in your area. But first, you will see what it entails, and you might find a company you like.

But I am an executor living in LA, and the property is in Chicago.

Miss Sophia has dealt with this situation many times when the client is out of town. In this case, go to Google,, and and look up companies located near the property where the sale is to be held. Look at their profiles and websites, read reviews with a critical eye, and check their social media links. Ask for referrals from Realtors in the area, and then start making phone calls. Think of it as a phone interview. See if you get a good vibe. Are all of your questions being answered? Then, start making a list of the candidates with whom you want to continue the process. After all, you are hiring this company, so it’s a job interview.

Have a reasonable timeline.

Estate sales take time to set up and market. You know you will need an estate sale, so start planning early. Refrain from calling up a company and expecting a sale next weekend. Instead, plan on the sale happening in at least four weeks. The more time everyone has to prepare, the better the sale.

And the good companies get booked in advance. For example, Miss Sophia usually books 2-4 months out because her calendar is full.

What should I do to prepare for my consultation with an estate sale company?

Miss Sophia says the one thing you do not have to do is clean the house. She has seen it all, and nothing shocks her (okay, a corpse in the basement would shock her).

But do locate any important personal and financial documents and either store them for safekeeping or throw them out.

But Miss Sophia would like you to organize and mark the items that you plan to keep before your appointment. Gather up and box any small items, segregate clothes and books, and tag big pieces with a post-it. Any estate sale company needs to know upfront what is for sale and what is not for sale.

And have a list of questions ready.

I signed a contract; now what?

Let the state sale company do its job and be available to answer questions. You interviewed several estate sale companies and hired the one you trust, so now it is time to trust them.

Miss Sophia knows that is a hard piece of advice to follow because estate sales always come at times of crisis or change: a death, a big move, a retirement, a foreclosure, etc. You are completely stressed out! Miss Sophia realizes that all this stuff in the home is one big problem among a multitude of problems, and she will solve the stuff problem so you can concentrate on other things and move on.


If you are considering an estate sale, call Miss Sophia before you give away, throw away, or donate any items. One person's trash is another person's treasure. You never know what something is worth, that's why you call us! We can be reached at or 773-729-0639


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