We commonly find ourselves in the position of overseeing affairs when our parents decide to downsize or, God forbid, get “called up.” Dealing with the belongings inside the home or finalizing the estate is an expensive proposition. I frequently receive the question, “Does mom have any valuables inside the home, and would it be worthwhile for me to try to obtain that value?” Let’s take it in two bites since that’s a big question.
Let’s suppose that in the initial case that Mom and Dad are still with us, but that it is finally time to minimize and purge some belongings. The following tips will help you approach the “clean out” in a methodical way and with less stress.
- Create a plan of action: It is beneficial to create a plan of action before you start. This can involve making a list of the things you wish to keep, donate, or sell as well as establishing a cleaning schedule.
- Enlist help: Cleaning out a house may be a taxing physical and emotional endeavor. Getting assistance from family, friends, or a professional organizer might be beneficial. If it appears too difficult or you just don’t have the time, HALO Senior Solutions can manage the entire procedure.
- Go through the items and determine what to keep, donate, or sell. Start by going through your parents’ belongings. Making piles or boxes for each category may be useful. Your parents’ propensity to see value in everything and to not want to let anything go may make them in need of objective or outside professional assistance.
- Dispose of hazardous materials: Be sure to properly dispose of any potentially harmful substances, including chemicals and prescription drugs. This can mean getting in touch with the local organization in charge of trash to get advice on how to get rid of it right.
- Give or sell stuff: Take into consideration giving in-good-condition items to a neighborhood charity or offering them for sale at a garage sale or on Facebook Marketplace. A thorough list of regional organizations and the products they will accept is kept up to date by HALO Senior Solutions.
- Hire experts: If you require further assistance, think about hiring experts like an estate sale firm or a cleaning service. To make this process considerably simpler, HALO Senior Solutions can put you in touch with reliable resources.
- Take pauses: Throughout the cleaning process, it’s critical to give yourself breaks. Rest and look after your personal health throughout this period.
Now, let’s take a look at the sad and inevitable. Mom, Dad, or both have passed away and you are carrying out the duty on your own (or with siblings). Although it may be painful, keep in mind that it could also be a chance to celebrate the life of a loved one, support the family in entering a new stage, or even find healing. Here are some suggestions for organizing and carrying out an estate sale.
- Let’s not forget how tough and traumatic losing a parent may be. Give yourself and everyone else around you some grace and take your time. The process of cleaning out a parent’s home can be difficult when you’re grieving.
- Collect crucial papers: Prior to starting the estate sale process, you must collect crucial papers such as the will, property titles, bank records, and other vital papers. These documents can help you comprehend the estate’s entire breadth and assure that everything is disbursed in accordance with your parents’ intentions.
- Determine the estate’s value: After gathering the necessary papers, you must determine the estate’s value. This may entail paying a qualified appraiser to determine the value of some particular items such as jewelry or works of art. If the property is part of the estate, you might also want to take its value into account. This may be accomplished by establishing a connection with a knowledgeable, licensed Realtor who can offer comparable house values and guidance on the selling procedure. To assist in this area, HALO Realty Group is a highly qualified real estate company specializing in serving senior-age clients.
- Select the objects that will be sold: Following your evaluation of the estate’s value, you must choose the objects that will be offered for sale. It may be beneficial to consult other family members in this decision, as they may have their own memories and relationships to certain items.
- Pick a day for the sale: Once you’ve decided what will be sold, you’ll need to choose a date for the occasion. Since most people have more casual time on the weekends, estate sales are frequently scheduled on those days. To draw in more people, you might also want to think about advertising the sale in regional newspapers or on online classified sites.
- Get ready for the sale: You’ll need to do some work in the weeks before the sale. This could entail setting up tables or other display places for items as well as cleaning and sorting the objects that will be offered for sale. To handle these responsibilities, you might also want to think about working with an experienced estate sale company. If it sounds like a lot of effort, that’s because it is! You can ask HALO Senior Solutions to take care of everything, or we can put you in touch with some top-notch estate sale service providers nearby.
- Conduct the sale: You must be present on the day of the sale to oversee the proceedings and address any queries that prospective buyers may have. For the sale of any larger or more expensive objects, you might also wish to think about working with a professional auctioneer.
- Complete the sale: Once the sale has been completed, you must complete the distribution of the estate in accordance with the decedent’s intentions. This could mean giving the rightful people a share of the money made from the sale or giving the people who should own certain things the right to own those things.
Regardless of your situation, it will take some work to find out if there is a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. Call HALO Senior Solutions and find out how they may help if you’re not looking forward to this physically demanding, emotionally taxing, and unpleasant project.
Todd Howard, Halo Senior Solutions’ founder and CEO and a licensed Indiana Realtor, holds the SRES® (Certified Seniors Real Estate Specialist) designation. He has helped a lot of older clients move out of their big homes and into retirement communities or “age in place” homes that are more suitable for aging in place.