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Estate sales are a bargain hunter’s paradise. It’s one of the few places where haggling is not only expected, it’s often encouraged. Those that are in the market for some “new” furniture stand to gain the most at these types of sales. Vintage, designer and hardwood pieces – they can all be found for ridiculously low prices.


What to Expect at an Estate Sale

When a person is no longer living in their home, for whatever reason, an estate sale may be conducted. Typically, they are put on by a professional estate sale company, are well organized and everything that isn’t attached to the home is on sale. The company may opt to put prices on items, but that doesn’t mean you can’t negotiate an item down a dollar or two.

In fact, bartering for a better price is commonplace. If items don’t sell they will likely be donated. Estate sale companies are motivated to make a sale while they can, even if it’s well below the market value. That said, sellers tend to be a little more firm on furniture, especially in the first day of the sale.

You can expect to see a lot more bargain shoppers at an estate sale than at your neighborhood garage sale. Among those shoppers are interior designers, vintage shop owners, antique dealers and decorators – people that know their stuff and make their living at events like these. Competition for furniture can be fierce.

Only a certain number of people will be allowed in at one time based on the size of the estate. At the more popular estate sales you may have to wait in a line so dress accordingly. Every now and then they’ll let people preview the home before buying starts. If this is an option, take them up on the offer.

The most popular days for estate sales are Friday morning through Sunday afternoon, and they can take place all year round.

How to Find Austin Estate Sales

Time to find the next estate sale extravaganza! Try these resources:

Estate Sale Websites – EstateSales.net (national listings), austinestatesales.net, annedeeestatesales.com

Local Newspaper – In the Real Estate section

Craigslist – in the Garage Sales & Moving Sales section

When you’re searching for estate sales keep an eye out for pictures and mentions of furniture that’s up for grabs. Some good terms to look for include priced to sell, everything must go and must sell all.

Create a game plan of which estate sales you’d like to hit over a weekend. Put them in order starting with the one that sounds the most interesting, and visit the sales in that order.

Tips for Expert Estate Sale Furniture Shopping

For Furniture Finds

General Best Practices

In a city where recycling is a way of life, there’s likely to be a lot of estate sale competition. But armed with these estate sale secrets you’re sure to find one or two pieces of furniture to show off in your own home. So put on you’re haggling hat and get moving to the next estate sale.