What's the difference between Estate, Tag, Moving & Garage Sales?

Authored by Cynthia Illicete-Burns from Full Circle Estate & Tag Sale Services LLC - Nov 11, 2012

There are actually four basic types of household sales.  See which one applies to your sale.

1.  A Garage Sale is a sale of someone’s unwanted household items. Most often held in somebody’s garage or driveway, garage sales sell cookware, utensils, smaller pieces of furniture, children’s cast off toys and clothing, old tools, etc. Garage sales can often yield treasures when households are selling things from the attic or basement that belonged to their parents or grandparents. Garage sales can be very unpredictable in the kinds of items they have and can yield terrific things for very little money. A variation on the garage sale is the Yard Sale which usually has more items for sale than a garage sale so it spills out into someone’s entire yard.

2.  A Moving Sale usually contains the partial and sometimes even the entire contents of a home. Moving is expensive and many people sell a large percentage of their possessions rather than move them. Moving sales can yield terrific pieces, often large pieces of furniture that would be very costly to move.

3.  An Estate Sale is easily defined – it is the sale of the goods from an estate; i.e., someone who has passed. Estate sales often yield the greatest treasures of all because they contain the collections of a lifetime. Possessions being sold may have belonged to an elderly person, which sometimes includes the property of that person’s parents and grandparents. Estate sales often yield terrific antiques that are coming on the resale market for the first time. As a rule, Estate sales are run by professionals, who have been contracted by the family or by the estate's executors. These estate sale professionals will go through all of the departed’s possessions, appraise its value, clean the items, then arrange, display, and price everything that will go into the sale. Furthermore, they will absorb the expense of managing the actual sale itself (including difficult tasks like crowd control & security).

4.  A Tag Sale is sort of a hybrid between a Garage Sale and an Estate Sale. This is usually a sale of someone’s property (who is living) that is of higher quality than what you’d find at a garage sale. Generally tag sales are managed by professionals and will contain quality furniture and collectibles and often important antiques.

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