Friday, August 4, 2017

Estate Auctions - What you need to know as a seller

Estate auctions happen daily.  Most people are familiar with them and many have purchased from them.  However, when you are on the selling side rather than the buying side, it is a much much different experience.  It's an emotionally taxing task for those in charge.  As I have written before, auctioneers are basically problem solvers.  Estates are an area in which the auction method can really benefit executors and heirs alike.

First and foremost, you should demand an auctioneer who will serve the needs of the estate with dignity, respect and humility.  While there is great benefit in having someone come in with no emotional attachment, respecting the consignor(s) grief process is VERY important.

An estate auction, properly promoted by a professional auctioneer, will yield clear benefits to heirs.  Let's examine several that I think are important:
  • Estate auctions are honest, efficient and transparent.
    • Anyone can openly bid, the price works upward and everything is done in a generally short period of time.  Records are kept with reports provided to the estate so that everyone understands what sold and for what amount.
  • Estate auctions take a burden off of the executor and heirs
    • During an already mentally exhausting time, an auction can relieve a major burden from executors and heirs.  Choosing a trustworthy auctioneer who can handle things for the executor can be a genuine relief.  In fact, most auctioneers can provide a complete solution.  Read on for more related to that.....
  • Estate auctions maximize price realized for the heirs
  • Estate auctions can liquidate everything if the executor/heirs wish
    • Not only will an estate auction take away burden and maximize the price on desirable items, it can also divest heirs of the less desirable assets as well.  This is a major difference as compared to estate sale events which could leave heirs figuring out what to do with unsold items.  In an auction setting, the less desirable assets may be grouped until someone "bites" ......again, setting the market price for that asset.  This is key if the estate needs to empty a property to create marketable real estate.  Speaking of which.....
  • Estate auctions can include real estate in addition to personal property
    • Perhaps the estate includes personal property and real estate.  Most auctioneers who offer real estate sell at auction and in traditional listing environments as well.  All situations and property are different, so either method could be appropriate.  This is another example in which an estate auction could be complete and turn-key for an executor.
  • Estate auctions can give executors and heirs a method to efficiently divide assets
    • Finally, an estate auction can actually provide executors and heirs with a method to equitably divide an estate.  At auction heirs compete and bid for items that they want.  The money that they spend would then, in turn, make its way back to them in their portion of the estate settlement.  Disagreements among heirs are unfortunate and sometimes nefarious.  As I mentioned in point one an auction is an honest, efficient and transparent solution and it could prevent that kind of situation.
Finally, it is important to note that many times estates are sold by the owner while he/she is alive and well!  I contend that the same information applies.  Simply replace the word heir with owner.  If you have any questions about estate auctions, or the auction method in general, feel free to contact me.  I'd be very happy to help you better understand the process.  Thanks for reading!

Alex Grovenstein
GA Auctioneer License #4105
SC Auctioneer License #4534
GA Real Estate License #366186


Serving Statesboro, Savannah, and all areas of southeast Georgia and southern South Carolina with open, honest and efficient auction solutions.

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