Estate Sales by Individuals

We’ve all heard the saying “Life is like a box of chocolates: You never know what you’re going to get.” Estate sales are similar to boxes of chocolate, as you can’t always tell from their descriptions if they are good or not. I’ve been grappling with whether I should stick with listing only estate sales by professionals or if I should continue to occasionally list estate sales by individuals.

If you’ve been junking for very long, you’ve probably stopped at an estate sale just because you drove by a sign that said “estate sale.” There’s a certain bit of adventure in doing so. You don’t know if you’re going to enter a home full of goodies or junk, or whether items will be over-priced or under-priced. On one hand, I’ve stopped by some incredibly frustrating “estate sales” that were actually nothing more than garage sales selling baby clothes and toys. Definitely been there and bought the t-shirt. On the other hand,one of my favorite estate sale adventures began while I was driving down Highway 64 on my way to work my booth at Do Drop In in Beebe, Arkansas. When working my booth in Beebe, I always need every second I can get because I don’t have the chance to get there as often as I’d like. Of course when I saw an estate sale sign outside a super old house, I immediately threw on my brakes, turned around, and forgot all about working my booth. Needless to say, the estate sale was amazing and I walked away with a truck-load of incredible (and priced-to-sell) old stuff. Sales like that are few and far between, but it’s those sales which keep me stopping and turning around for unexpected estate sale signs. Surely I’m not the only one?

My general policy here at Ashley’s Finds has been to focus on professional estate sales and welcome the occassional estate sale by individual. Recently I posted an estate sale by an individual because I thought it might be worth a visit. However, one of my readers let me know that the sale wasn’t all that great and recommended that I screen estate sales by individuals. Being that I have a full-time job and run my own Antique Show in Conway, Arkansas (, I unfortunately don’t have time to pre-visit a sale before I share it. I hate that someone ended up at a less-than-excellent sale on my accord and I’m tempted not to post such listings, but I can’t help remembering those random estate sales that make up some of my more memorable estate sale experiences. So I’d like to open up this topic to everyone. Should I list the estate sales by professionals only or should I continue to list estate sales by individuals when I receive the information?

14 thoughts on “Estate Sales by Individuals”

  1. Jimmy Griffin

    I hope you keep on listing them Ashley when you have time. As you said, you never know whats going to be there, and its useful information for all who view your website, and are out junking. For me, each weekend I’m out, its always nice to know whats going on in the direction I’m heading. Keep up the good work, girl, and thank you for this wonderful website.

  2. Carol Eichelmann

    Don’t miss the chance to list estate sales by individuals, as you experienced, some are really great, and even some of the “professional” sales leave me empty handed, so the more the merrier. Love your site, and appreciate what you are doing. When you go to Beebe on a Saturday, come see us at the Main Street Flea Market, on South Main. Lots of stuff, would love to have you come by. Only open on Saturday. Keep up the good work.

  3. Karla Burnett

    Please keep posting all estate sales that you know about. Your list is a very helpful tool. Certainly some sales are not as good, but it doesn’t take too long to figure it out. When I go ” saling” I like knowing where all of the sales are while I am out & about!! Thanks for providing that!Z

  4. nita and jerry gavin

    AS you know we live in south Arkansas and have become dependent on you for our sales. This addition would be gladly received by us. Just a hent… the individual sales separate from the professionals. THANK YOU FOR ALL YOU DO FOR US

  5. I would post all estate sales. I look at the pictures that are posted to see whether or not, I would go to the sales. If there are not any pictures, to give the buyer an idea of what kind of merchandise is for sell, why waste the time and fuel.

  6. Keep listing the ones by individuals. I’ve gone to many estate sales by the professional companies that I really had no interest in, however the wife and I view them as something to do on a Saturday morning. I have better bargains at the ones by individuals as well as found them amiable to negotiating. As the expression goes, Don’t let one bad apple spoil the whole bunch.

  7. You are AWESOME!!! Thank you for the time a effort you put forth. I love getting your blog and e-mail every week and look forward to every post. KEEP DOING WHAT YOU ARE DOING!!!! ; ) 😉 ; )

  8. I hope you continue to list estate sales by individuals, that’s the only way I would know about most of them. You never know when you’ll find that perfect gem you were looking for. Thanks for all you do!

  9. Pingback: Upcoming Estate Sales and Auctions for July 19 – 22 » Ashley's Finds - Estate Sales in the Little Rock area

  10. Yes, keep posting the ones by individuals. I can’t believe one of your subscribers would ask you to quit listing them just because she went to a disappointing sale. She can leave–there are no guarantees in any of this and that is what makes it fun!! I’ve been to more “disappointing sales” (typically overpriced) than I have individual sales! I prefer individuals. Thanks for all you do.

  11. Please keep posting the individual sales. I find the best treasures at the individual sales! Not all sales are great, but hey…that’s the fun of the treasure hunt!!

  12. Hi Ashley-
    Keep up the good work! I really appreciate you listing upcoming sales on Wed or Thur! Please give us as much info as you have and we can decide if it is a good sale or not. What might be a good sale for me could be a nightmare for you!

  13. Thank you all SO much for your comments! I put together the newsletter and website based on what makes life easier for me, but it helps to get feedback to make sure I’m helping everyone else too.

    I’ll continue to list the Estate Sales by Individuals when they are submitted to me. I’ll also continue to offer to upload photos of those estate sales when they contact me so we can get a better idea about the sales. I’ve posted photos of estate sales by individuals in the past and it has worked out well. I’ll just title those sales “Estate Sale by Individual” so everyone will know they aren’t conducted by any of the professionals.

    Thanks again and please don’t hesitate to contact me if you can think of ways I can improve the emails or this website. 🙂

  14. Pingback: Upcoming Estate Sales and Auctions for July 26 – 29‏ » Ashley's Finds - Estate Sales in the Little Rock area

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