Estate Sales


Founding Member
I've grown old
Lifetime Member
Jun 12, 2014
Founding Member
A place to find great bargains or just the chance to take others’ junk off their hands and pay them to do it? Used to be “garage sales“ in the old days. The missus really enjoys going to them and though I wasn’t fully on board at first, I‘ve come to enjoy them. I’m usually aways on the lookout for tools and frequently find good quality for next to nothing. One of the best bargains I ever got was a Craftsman Miter saw in really good working order for $10. one of the neatest tools I found was an adze that I paid $4 for. Rarely see those and if you do they’re really expensive. Wife has gotten some really nice furniture for both our house and the kids. Interested to hear any takes and tips. My wife’s not big on bargaining, but I’m kinda like the dad in “A Christmas Story,” Arab trader and what not.

Gator By Marriage

A convert to Gatorism
Lifetime Member
Dec 31, 2018
The old adage of one man’s trash is another man’s treasure is really true when comes to estate sales. Before the internet, they used to be a much better place to find bargains as the sellers might not know what they had. Still, kids often just want to get rid of their parents stuff. Tools are often one of the better bargains. I’ll always grab any Craftsman hand tools. Especially any broken ones as Lowe’s will honor the lifetime warranty.


Just chillin'
Lifetime Member
Jan 6, 2015
Tools are good. Other than that we already have too much crap in our house already.

Other side of the story - FIL passed 7-8y ago, when MIL passed 1.5y ago her son and daughter (my wife) went the estate sale route. Now everybody over estimates the value of their stuff, largely due to sentimental value as opposed to street value. However, the son sold the jewelry himself, found out half was costume (fake) worthless stuff, but still got about $3k for the rest ( after he and my wife took out what they wanted, of course).

House was a downsized retiree ranch, but filled with nearly all new stuff from 12y ago when they retired. Had an old weird L-corner couch in green with patterns from the 60’s and 70s, but otherwise a recent 2 bed / 2 bath ranch of decade old stuff. Estate salesman had been running several in the community in previous weeks - knew the market, and the values.

At the end, wife and her brother split about $6k with the sales guy saying - just barely didn’t owe be anything. Wtf?!?!? Was supposed to be commission on overall sale, he knew some film house in NYC that took the vintage couch and a few other items but overall barely a break even proposition for the kids.

Bottom line, you can do sell the estate yourself, but you’ll likely be over estimating and have a hard time getting rid of stuff. Or you can outsource it, but pay attention to the details of the deal, or they take the lions share.


SAC Trained Warrior
Lifetime Member
Feb 15, 2016
Or, after divvying up the sentimental and valuable stuff, you can find a local charity that has people working to pay their way to clean the house out and donate the remainder to the thrift store. Generally an estate sale group take 40% of the till up front.


Gainesville Native
Lifetime Member
Jul 30, 2014
Was stationed in Boston for 4 years. Crazy how easy it was to get antique furniture for dirt cheap. A desk bureau, a cedar chest, a dresser… there’s so much colonial antique furniture, it’s a dime a dozen if you check the yard sales instead of the antique stores. You could load up a truck full of that stuff and probably make a mint selling it somewhere we’ll outside New England where it’s not so common.

Alumni Guy

Lifetime Member
Nov 7, 2015
One of my most treasured items was found at an estate sale of an old family friend. He was a bit of a mentor to me in my legal career, and I was able to buy one of his law school text books from the ‘60’s.

It has all of his shorthand notes and doodles in it.

Best $.50 I ever spent.


Senior Member
Lifetime Member
Jul 20, 2014
My dad found a gold mine in the late 70s buying a bar and small marina in Sarasota County. When the old men would die the widows would put the fishing tackle out for sale. Dad made a small fortune years later selling old lures. He and my brothers were always finding bargains. Then it ramped up a notch. Dad managed a high end Condo (they gave him and his wife one to live in) on Midnight Pass early 80s. If someone died the kids would come and throw it all down the chute where dad took out the garbage bins. Unreal what "rich peoples" would just throw away. Expensive fly rods etc.


Well-Known Member
Jul 23, 2020
I enjoy estate sales. I've not gotten anything of great value but have picked up a few things that I have been able to use. Mrs. Nalt likes them too and she tends to target things that are more of a sentimental type item, i.e. antiques. She mostly prefers going to thrift stores though. I wish every thrift store within 100 miles would close permanently


Founding Member
I've grown old
Lifetime Member
Jun 12, 2014
Founding Member
On cue, the missus and I went to an estate sale last Friday morning. May have mentioned but my daughter is moving back from Valdosta and renovating the in-laws’ house. She asked us for the queen bed, frame and mattress from our house. We have a king mattress and box springs and found a beautiful oak bed frame, looked almost new, that we can use to replace the bed going to our daughter. Gladly paid $150.


Not Seedy
Lifetime Member
Jul 24, 2020
I got antique family heirloom furniture about 20+ years ago. It would be my great grandparents from the late 1800’s. I’d prefer to pass it along to another family member now but my kids or siblings don’t want it. I’ll reach out to cousins next. I was selling some other stuff to a furniture store and he offered $100+/ piece for this. I know the sentimental value makes it worth more to me but young people don’t want antiques.

Concrete Helmet

Hook, Line, and Sinker
Lifetime Member
Jul 29, 2014
Due to the demographics of the typical member this website is probably a great place to home in on future estate sales...


Founding Member
Ox's Former Favorite Poster
Lifetime Member
Jun 11, 2014
Founding Member
Seems like people have been blurring the names "Estate Sales" with "Garage/Yard Sale"
Used to be that a garage or yard sale was just some random that wanted to sell of a bunch of their old junk, typically things they have no value or need for anymore.
An Estate sale was typically because of a death, which meant the prospects of finding better stuff because the kids didn't want (and didn't know the value of) their grandparents old stuff. Or there was simply no one for the stuff to go to.

I guess everyone thinks they have an estate now :lol:

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