My BFF introduced me to estate sales and to the website https://www.estatesales.net/. I went to check one out on a Thursday and almost immediately and very nearly literally stumbled upon my next living room furniture purchase. Delivery of this powered recliner required several trips over the rest of that weekend, because I almost always do things the hard and often expensive way. These are not always my fault, and in this case the impediments were a combo of events both in and out of my control.
I had to rent a U-Haul van for just a few hours and to recruit and schedule the muscle of MM and her spouse Evil Genius (EG) to heft and move it. All the while, she continued to complain to me that I should have been able to just borrow a truck from Lowe’s or Home Depot for free because she thought she remembered they had told her they would let “customers” do that, even for purchases not made there. I disabused her of this potentially faulty memory with some humor given that it proved how much she is truly a Mini-Me in so many ways that I won’t go into each of them here!
One of those personality facets we share is perhaps a bit too much frugality. I say this with great affection based on the fact that her house is furnished almost entirely with second-hand stuff she has purchased over the years and moved with her all over the country before finally landing in their house here in Michigan. Her first furniture was often found on Craig’s list but she has more recently moved her searches to Facebook marketplace. I have followed her there but before I move on, I just want to give myself one more pat on the back by concluding with the extended estate sale pickup bonus I got after I had to go back there to get the power cord we had left behind in my hurry to get the kids and the van back on the day we moved the chair.
Savvy sellers more often than not mark down items they want to get rid of so they don’t have to store or move them after the sale is done. This of course is known as a clearance sale in retail and very much applies to estate/garage/moving sales. As a result, I picked up three badly needed table lamps for free. I could have also left that day with a table and chairs if I had had a vehicle to move them in. This could have been an example of the maxim “haste makes waste” but I was spared that personal beat down by another happy happenstance I will describe later.
The power recliner in its temporary spot + one of the free lamps in an even more temporary spot
I later found a set of good quality (read real wood vs pressboard) bookcases on FB marketplace. In between I’d also found a cheap i.e. fake wood but really plastic set of living room tables via the same source that I could have easily loaded into my own car by my own self. In this instance, though, it was a good excuse for me to buy some donuts and pastries for the hollow-legged EG at one of his favorite local sources for such fattening goodies, the Sweet Valley Donut Shop. We met the seller of these items in the parking lot of one of their two Kalamazoo locations. Score one for us! Yum.
FB Marketplace ad read Three-piece table set, two end tables and one coffee table. Wood and metal. The tops were really plastic which made them easy care for me and still worth the price.
Anyway, back to the bookcase saga. I went back and forth with the seller several times on different issues and there were gaps between communications. The net result was that the process took at least twice as long as I’d expected, based on my only previous FB Marketplace experience with the tables, which now I guess may have been unusually quick and easy, but maybe not.
First, I needed measurements. All four of them were the same width and depth 3’x1′. Each was a different height, max 5′. With these numbers in hand, I finally measured the spaces in my apartment where I thought I might put them. Then, based on the recliner estate sale experience, I had to go the extra step of measuring the interior cargo space of my car. The results of these exercises were generally good news. I had enough wall and floor space for all four bookcases and I could fit them in my car. The only bad news was that I would need to make two trips to move all of them because I only had enough room in the car for two at a time.
Since they were made of real wood, I also knew they would be heavy which meant I would need help to load and unload. I pre-arranged the supply of this assistance from Mini-Me, but had a lot of trouble, and way too much more back and forth with the seller, in trying to schedule this big moving day. MM often works from home which allows her to have a fairly flexible schedule thus enabling her to add in these small errands. Unfortunately, during this particular time period, she and her spouse were limited to one vehicle while hers was in the shop for repair after a fender bender. By this time, it had been there for way too long to suit their needs!
The only info I could give her up front was that the pickup location would be nearby and that the deed would have to be done before 3:30 in the afternoon. I was only able to ascertain the former by cyberstalking the named Marketplace seller after he’d advised that he was moving them from his workplace. After I repeatedly told him I would need help which would be most available in the afternoon during everyone else’s workweek, I was finally able to arrange to git ‘er done on the very last Friday afternoon he would have access to the office he was moving them from and that my daughter would be working from home.
The move was finally successfully made, in two trips as planned. They were so heavy that between the two of us we were only able to move them in fits and starts, and in some creative ways that my practiced moving daughter had learned by repeated use in her prior often solo moves. So, at last, there they sat, just inside the front door of my apartment, until I could figure out where I wanted to put them and how I would get them there. You’d think that the most difficult moves would be the longest i.e. from the office to the car and from the car to the door, but you’d be wrong!
One reply on “Non-retail RT”
It’s nice you sought plenty of help for this tedious buy sell process. Thanks for the idea with regard to discarding soon my mother’s possessions.