Estate sales are where most people would often find rare items that could sell for high prices or are difficult to acquire in the market. However, not all estate sales would have valuable items for sale, so you would have to know what to look for in order to get a good deal from buying those previously owned or secondhand items. Here are five helpful tips and tricks on how to find rare items at estate sales.
Focus on Finding Paintings and Art Pieces
Most frequent estate sale buyers would usually look for paintings and other art pieces first before finding other items, as these artworks could fetch more in the resell market. The people or owners that set up estate sales would let go of the artworks if they cannot move those with them, so they would typically sell these artworks for much cheaper in order for them to be sold before they could move to a new home or location. However, since the artworks would be sold for a lower price, there is a chance that it would be sold in just a few minutes or hours on the first day of the estate sale. So, if you are there to buy paintings and art pieces, make sure that you go to the sale early on the first day.
On the other hand, if you are purchasing artworks for reselling, there are only a few styles of themes that are popular in today’s era. So, you would need to be knowledgeable in the trends of the art world before making a purchase, as buying a painting that isn’t popular today would only be a mistake for you.
Look for Authentic Jewelry
Besides paintings, jewelry is another valuable item that you can buy in estate sales, although you would first have to know if the pieces of jewelry you are buying are authentic if you are planning to resell them. Some estate sales may declare jewelry like necklaces, rings, or bracelets to be made of real gold, silver, or gemstones, but a few of them may actually be fake, so you have to be wary of the jewelry you are buying.
There are many written guides online on how to spot fake jewelry, so finding an authentic one is relatively easy nowadays, as you would only have to be knowledgeable about what to look for. Be sure to read or watch guides before going to an estate sale to buy jewelry.
Find Rare Books
If you are an avid reader, finding good and rare books on estate sales would feel like Christmas for you, especially if those books can fetch a high price in the resell market. Books that would usually have high resell value are first editions of popular and classic titles, like the ones that will give you details on what are the rarest things on earth, but these ones can be pretty hard to find even in estate sales. Knowing what first edition books look like can be pretty difficult, as you would have to turn to the copyright page and look at the number line, which indicates when the book was printed.
Leatherbound books are also good buys on estate sales, as those can also sell well in secondhand bookstores. Second edition books also have resell value, especially for the classic titles, but they are not as valuable as first editions.
Search for Working Appliances
Since homeowners wouldn’t be able to move appliances with them sometimes, there are plenty of home appliances that would often end up in estate sales. Most of the appliances you would find are working properly, although there will be some that would look shiny and new outside but actually have broken parts inside.
In order to know if the appliance is working, ask the seller or the handler of the sale if you could hook it up to an electrical outlet to see if it is functioning. If the seller doesn’t allow you to see if it works, then it would be best not to buy that item, as the seller might be hiding some defects for it.
Look for Kitchenware
Much like home appliances, kitchenware is also abundant in estate sales since the sellers couldn’t bring it with them if ever they have a limited storage capacity for their move to a new home. There are vintage pieces of kitchenware that you would need to look out for if you are planning to buy it for resell, and these vintage pieces are usually made by Pyrex.
Kitchen collectibles like rare cookie cutters and ice cream scoopers can be valuable in the market, especially if they are made in specific eras where cookies and ice cream were popular. In addition, utensils and other kitchen items that are made of cast iron are also valuable depending on their condition, but since cast iron is fairly durable, you can find plenty that is in good condition.
Those are just a few useful tips on finding rare and valuable items at estate sales. As mentioned previously, make sure that the items you are buying on the sales are authentic and working in order for your purchase to be worth it.