The fastest growing trends in estate sales: what to buy, where to look, and how to get the best deals in 2017.
Mid-Century furniture is in, and one of the only places to buy it at an affordable price is estate sales. Follow sales in your area through www.estatesales.net and keep an eye out for homes featuring well-cared for, classic designs.
Modern chairs are especially popular. For a guide to buying mid-century modern furniture, read eBay’s guide.
Quality will never go out of style, and this year is no exception. Sterling silver in all its forms is highly sought at estate sales by resellers and collectors alike. To ensure what you are buying is actually sterling, look for these markings: the word sterling or the number 925. If it’s stamped silver plate, it’s not sterling and has very little monetary value. Don’t pay more than a few dollars for anything silver plate.
Before buying sterling silver, know it’s value. Some items, such as those made by Tiffany’s are worth considerably more than those without a maker’s mark. A good guide for understanding sterling silver can be found here.
Large baskets are especially popular: Multi-colored, leather-handled, the kind you can put next to the couch to hold your throw blanket. Baskets are shown in nearly every minimalist and Hygge home setting for their natural artisan qualities.
Baskets from estate sales, if well-made, are beautifully weathered and ready for their new home.
Kovels offers the definitive resource for handmade baskets.
From screwdrivers to table saws, estate sales often have a garage full of tools sold for a quarter of the retail price.
Not all tools are made equal, and brand matters. To learn more about how to spot quality tools, check out DIYnetwork’s Buying Guide for Secondhand Tools.
Handmade jewelry is expensive! Buy artisan jewelry at estate sales and save!
Artisan jewelry at estate sales ranges from a dollar or two to hundreds of dollars, depending on the materials and maker of the item. Regardless of your budget, you can find something you love at an estate sale.
What makes a piece of jewelry worth more: the materials (gold, silver, gemstones, etc.), the maker (an internet search can tell you how popular they are and what their work sells for), and style. Jewelry, like all fashion, goes out of style and loses value accordingly.
As much as we complain about politics, we actually love it. Estate sales are very social settings, and politics is a common conversation topic. Find a conversation piece, ask other shoppers what they know about it, and you’ll be amazed what you can learn.
One of a kind political memorabilia is easily found at estate sales. You can even join a collector’s club like American Political Items Collectors.
We all share the same problem: we have more books than shelves to put them on. Never go to a big-box store for a cheap bookcase. Shop at an estate sale and get a quality bookcase at a great price. Your books deserve it!
Get Rich Slowly offers great advice on choosing quality furniture and knowing how to spot the cheap stuff.
Handmade, unique items such as shelving, chairs, and tables are often found at estate sales.
If you don’t have time to make it yourself, or can’t afford to buy from venders, have a look at your local estate sale!
Collectors of all kinds shop at estate sales. Popular rarities this year are human skulls, ouija boards, and creepy dolls.
Looking for inspiration for your own macabre collection? Check out this article from The Guardian.
Posters are big sellers at estate sales. One caveat: they have to look great and be in excellent condition. It’s another chance to get one-of-a-kind art.
To motivate your inner collector, check out this blog: www.postersplease.com
If it’s vintage, there’s probably a collector out there looking for it. This year, kitchenware is one of the first things out the door at an estate sale. The colors, longevity, and style of vintage kitchenware make for a truly unique curio display.
Expect to pay higher prices on these items due to their high demand, resale value, and pure aesthetic.
Check out these vintage kitchens on Pinterest.
And last, but not least, decorative pillows. These are so expensive in retails shops and boutiques that the only way to afford them, and know what you’re getting, is to buy them at estate sales.
Did you know some people pay hundreds of dollars for throw pillows?! Save your money, keep the style, buy your throw pillows at estate sales.