From: John De Armond
Subject: Re: Made the decision to go Full-Timing!
Date: Sun, 04 Jun 2006 13:23:18 -0400
On Sun, 04 Jun 2006 12:34:25 GMT, Greg Surratt <email@example.com>
>First off, Thanks to everyone for the advice.
>>Big decision. Good luck. Just curious, what area?
>Tidewater area in Virginia. The Ford Truck plant will close in 2008,
>displacing 2400 workers, the USS George Washington is going to be
>changing homeports from Norfolk to Japan, displacing another 3500, and
>who knows what the politicos are going to do with the jets at Oceana,
>another 5000 or so families.
Really? They're going to home-base a US warship in Japan? Wow. I
hadn't heard. That sounds crazy at first blush.
>Funny how terminology can make that big a difference! I may be wrong,
>but I was thinking garage sale for all the cheap stuff that I want to
>just go away (Good Will quality stuff) first and then a moving or
>estate sale for the furniture and some of the higher end items. Her
>mother left us with boxes and boxes of crafting yarn and lace, for
I kinda brushed on this in a previous post in this thread. I highly
suggest talking to some estate auctioneers. They're experienced in
getting the most out of all that "stuff" that accumulates over a
lifetime. Though the term is "estate" which makes one think "after
the geezers have died", in reality, much of their business is with
still-alive people who are making a major move, are retiring to
Florida or Az and those who just want rid of everything.
With a good auctioneer, if you don't want to you don't have to do
anything. He'll bring in a crew who'll go through each room and "lot"
stuff out for the best sale. He'll haul the "goodwill grade" junk
back to his auction house or one that he works with to be sold at
their periodic "junk auctions". The rest he'll arrange for the best
presentation in the house and (day of the auction) around the yard.
He'll provide tents, seating and all the other stuff that makes an
You and he will agree on an advertising budget (paid by you in
addition to the commission) and he'll promote the auction through the
usual channels, including TV if it's going to be a large auction.
If you so desire and specify in the contract, they'll leave the house
empty and clean with the floors swept. About all you have to do is be
around as they go through things to point out what you want to keep.
Discipline is VERY important here :-) If you're like me you'll have
to make several cuts before you get rid of all the non-essential
stuff. The auctioneer can have his staff move your "keepers" to a
mini-warehouse or whatever to get it out of the way.
Commissions vary from about 15% to maybe 40% of the take plus
advertising expenses, depending on how much prep work has to be done.
If you want to do some of the work to save money you can but that is
generally limited to pre-selecting your "keeper" stuff. The
auctioneer will have his own notions of what stuff would sell best
together (how to "lot" the stuff) so pre-boxing would not be helpful.
Other than the no-work aspect, the other major benefit of an auction
is that "auction fever" invariably bites and you end up getting more
for stuff than you ever could selling individually. I've done a lot
of estate auctions (which is why I'm about to have to have my own :-)
and I never cease to be amazed at how auction fever hits. When it
does, things bring 5-10X what they'd bring anywhere else.
I have a very good friend who owns an auction house and I've watched
and marveled at his work for years. I just can't imagine doing it any
other way, both for the lack of work involved and the extra profit.
>We started my Naval career 22 years ago living in a 23' Fleetwood
>Prowler through a winter at Great Lakes, ILL while I went to school.
>We are going to end this great adventure (and start a new one) living
>in Chesapeake, VA until we can leave.
That sounds like a lot of fun. You should have it made. I've always
been a bit envious of career military folks, both during their service
years and afterwards. I thought they were doing me a favor when they
medical 4-F'd me during Vietnam but after the fact, I wish they
hadn't. I'd have loved a nice long career as a navy nuke.