How to Pick an Estate Sale Company

There are plenty of options when it comes to estate sale companies, but we’ll go through the basics on how to pick an estate sale company near you. Don’t short change yourself by going for the first option. Make sure you research how to have a successful estate sale along with researching all of the top options in your area to guarantee an informed decision.

Step 1: Research Multiple Estate Sale Companies

Search terms can differ based on your location so the best place to start is by searching for ‘Estate sale companies near me’ or ‘estate liquidators near me’. Make a list of the top five companies that jump out to you and narrow from there. Be sure your top choices have:

  • A strong social media following
  • A clean, professional website with plenty of introductory details
  • Multiple ways to contact them to set up a consultation and interview

Step 2: Stick to Accredited Estate Sale Companies

The bad news is there isn’t one official organization that regulates estate sale companies. Thankfully, there are 2 well regarded associations that add extra credibility to the estate sale companies they endorse. The American Estate Society of Liquidators (ASEL) and the National Estate Sale Association (NESA) regulate estate sale companies nationwide. If a company has either of their endorsements you can be confident they are a well respected company.

Step 3: interview your top 2 choices

Once you have a few estate sale companies on your list, the next step is meeting with your top choices. This will give you the opportunity to ask specific questions on how they can make your sale a success. Remember, they are trying to gain Your business and should prove how you can benefit by selecting them.

Here are a few starter questions you should ask each company:

  1. How long have they been a company?
  2. Are they  bonded and insured?
  3. Can they provide references?
  4. What percentage of sales will they collect?
  5. How will they market your sale?
  6. How many employees will they provide for your sale?
  7. Do they have a good resource for large item deliveries from your sale?

If their answers to these questions fit what you are looking for you’re on the right path to selecting a company.

Step 4: Visit a Sale hosted by your top choice

Tour Estate Sales Near You

Before you make a decision on which company to go with, we recommend going to a live sale hosted by the estate sale you are seriously considering. Take notes on how they run the sale and how they organize the estate. If the sale lines up with the questions they recently answered, you may have found a winner. Checking out a sale in action is the best way to double check if the estate sale company will live up to your expectations.

Step 5: Don't throw anything away

It may be tempting to get a jump start on cutting down the clutter, but don’t touch anything! The estate sale company you hire will have better resources to appraise everything at your estate. They might be able to find some hidden gems amongst your property. Trusting their appraisal expertise will help maximize your profit in the end.

Step 6: Double Check all Contract Details

Contracts from estate sale

Don’t rush the details of your contract before signing with a company. This is an easy area to ultimately lose money, so be sure to get a thorough written contract from your hosting company. Each state has different regulations on taxes and on how soon you will be paid after the sale. Be certain your contract is clear with payment and tax details before signing and setting a date for your sale.

Other contract details to negotiate include:

  • Cleaning your estate after the sale
  • Length of sale
  • Visitor parking instructions at the estate
  • Company policy on discounts
  • Pre-sale deals and early entry

Negotiating these extra details will help leave less of a mess and more money in your pocket after the sale is done.


There are plenty of ways how to pick an estate sale company, but don’t be afraid to do the research and find the best option for your sale needs. Following this list is a great way to make sure you protect yourself and find the most reputable estate sale company in your area.