By Carolyn Mani
With overall market difficulties and an aging baby boomer generation, many of us in the auction business are seeing an increase in clients seeking to reduce their collections and personal possessions. When individuals are faced with the prospect of thinning the herd after years of accumulating objects, the process can seem overwhelming and daunting. Younger generations are living with a "less is more" mentality, and the inheritance of property from previous generations is no longer the welcome family treasure trove it once was. The next generation does not seem to be enthralled with keeping things from the previous generation that clash with their preferential modern, simple and uncluttered spaces and lifestyles.
Downsizing can occur for a lot of reasons: selling a larger home to go to a smaller home; moving across a great distance; elderly relatives moving to assisted living; change in lifestyles; empty nesters; or even just redecorating. It is our hope that this article will provide a guide for you and your clients in ensuring their affairs are in order.
Some items produced for the collector market, such as limited edition porcelain and Franklin Mint collectibles, have a market only in the online realm through online auctions or resale listing sites (i.e. ebay or craigslist). More valuable items may be appropriate for the regional or national auction market, a gallery or dealer. Heritage Auctions has 33 auction categories with in-house expertise that can assist with identifying the best market for different types of items. The archives online can provide a great starting place to seek information on the value of many collectibles, coins, comics, sports memorabilia, art and more.
Once we have lightened the load we can have a renewed sense of well being to know that we have less on our minds and in our homes and can enjoy the items that we do keep. Plus it may give us an excuse to start collecting again!
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