SMART DOWNSIZING: The Process and How To Sell Your Things

It is time to readjust the space we call home. This can mean that it is time to move or that it is time to declutter the items that no longer serve you in your space. Either way the process can be emotionally exhausting to think about. For some people it is remarkably sad and stressful. Fortunately, there are many different professionals that can help manage the stress and attain satisfying results. There is a road map of decisions  that these professionals help you navigate.

THE ROADMAP :

Stop 1. Make the decision to change your living space. The simple decisions to make change can feel enormous and life changing.

Stop 2. Make the decision to move to a new home or define the use of your current home (Air BNB or moving a family member in).

Stop 3. Work with an Organizer to help with decluttering and reconstruct the organization of rooms.

Stop 4. Work with a Downsizing Expert to decide what to do with the items you will no longer keep.

Stop 5. Work with a Realtor to manage the sale of current home and purchase of new home.

Stop 6. Work with a Move Manager to oversee the safe transition of both you and all the items you keep. A Move Manager can coordinate an Organizer, Movers and a Downsizing Professional to work with you.

Stop 7. If there has been a move to a new home, then work with your Organizer/Interior Designer/Decorator to put together your new home

Lets discuss stop 4, which is working with a Downsizing Expert to decide what to do with the items you will no longer keep. Initially, the items you no longer want to keep are separated into three categories: throw away, donate and sell.

Throw away items that are damaged (stained bedding, chipped bowls), items that are overly used (plastic food storage containers, cosmetic bags), and items that will not be excepted by donation centers (hangers, large TVs from the 1990’s, stuffed furniture with stains and pet hair).

Donate items that are not worth enough to sell (most picture frames and miscellaneous coffee mugs) 

Sell items that will make you some extra money to either ease Downsizing expenses or to help you save towards a rainy day (anything in good to excellent condition with a designer label: Pottery Barn, Cuisinart, Brighton, LuLu Lemon, Coffee Table Art Books, and anything that is sterling, gold or platinum).

SELL SMART! The smartest way to sell your things is to engage a Downsizing Expert that can give you a realistic idea of value for the items and then provide you with several reliable and easy to access options. There are two types of value that are to be considered when selling your items. They are Liquidation Value and Fair Market Value.

Liquidation value is what an item will sell for if you engage a tag sale company, a buy out company or a direct sale to an antique store. A tag sale or yard sale is a quick sale/flash sale of items to a small group of local buyers. A buy out company and an antique store needs to make an income from reselling the items they buy from you, which means they will pay you a smaller percentage of what they will try to sell the items for.

Fair Market Value is what an item might sell for if you can sell the item in the most appropriate market place. This can be done by determining the various areas of appropriate sale for select items. A sterling silver flatware set will sell better in an online auction that has established a high bidder base. A designer jacket will sell better on a site like Poshmark.com that lets you command the asking price to a large audience of interest specific buyers. Sites like Poshmark.com take a minimal commission in comparison to a consignment store that may charge a 55% commission. Many online auction companies with a large registered bidder base will bring the sale of your items closer to fair market value results than liquidation prices. Furniture, tools, exercise equipment and home decor often sells best in social media selling groups like Facebook Marketplace and Nextdoor.com, which do not take commission at all. Fine art often sells best through specific auction companies that have a specific collector audience.

A Downsizing Expert will help you navigate the fair market value and liquidation value options that suit your timeline, monetary goals and personal preferences. Look for someone that has experience doing appraisal work of antiques and collectibles.  An appraiser will be equipped to advise on values for selling and provide reliable guidance regarding avenues of sale.

The journey of Downsizing your lifestyle is a big adventure, but the knowledgeable professionals devoted to simplifying the process will smooth the way.