6 HELPFUL Tips for Estate Sale Clean Outs & Services

Reasons For House Cleanout Jobs

There are a variety of reasons why someone might require an emergency house cleaning service. Because the nature of the service is to rid a property of all its belongings in a short amount of time, these reasons are usually the result of sudden and unexpected events.

If not handled properly, estate cleanout projects can be difficult and expensive for the parties involved, whether it’s due to an eviction, a sudden foreclosure, a hoarding problem, or the loss of a loved one.

In most situations, the house must be cleaned out in less than 24 hours in order to sell it to a third party. Additionally, while there are a variety of reasons why someone would need a house cleaning service, not all cleanup jobs are the same. Each cleanout job has a different scope of work and, as a result, a different duration and expense.

Types of Estate Cleanout Services

The most typical sorts of estate cleanout services include a total overhaul of one portion of a house that is especially ridden with possessions that can no longer be reused or donated, as well as a complete overhaul of another part of a house that is exceptionally ridden with possessions that can no longer be reused or donated. The four most prevalent forms of estate cleaning services performed during COVID are as follows:


People realize their basement has become a catch-all when they want to start decluttering their home. Inefficient old refrigerators, huge furniture, old paint, books, vintage toys, and other items are notoriously kept. Hazardous material, such as paint and chemicals, will be disposed of by a basement cleanout service.


Whether you have a third-floor attic or a crawlspace attic with a drop-down ladder, cleaning out your attic might be difficult. Humans have a tendency to accumulate items such as Christmas decorations, photo albums, old children, toys, and cribs, among other things. People occasionally forget about their possessions and do not return to them for decades.


Other estate cleanouts, such as those in apartments, can take place in smaller locations. When a tenant is evicted unexpectedly, a landlord is confronted with a newly vacated apartment filled with the belongings of another person. It is possible that the landlord will find it uncomfortable to clean the room herself and will employ a third party to do so promptly and efficiently.


Finally, hoarding cleanup services are the most prevalent but also one of the most difficult estate cleanout services. When a person is unable to distinguish between an object’s true value and the negative feelings involved with disposing of it, they are said to be hoarding.

When this occurs, the hoarder usually chooses to preserve as many items as possible in order to escape the terrible sensations that come with discarding possessions. When a property is overrun with unnecessary goods, this can cause problems over time. Estate cleanout firms can be especially useful when a hoarder wants to vacate their house quickly, or if you want to clean a room in the most effective way possible.

How Much Does It Spend To Clear Out An Estate?

One of the most frequently asked inquiries by those who require an estate cleanout service is how much it will cost. But, it’s crucial to keep in mind that there may be many fees along the process because there are several processes to efficiently handle an estate cleaning from beginning to end. The following are some of the expenditures related with the estate cleanup process:

1. Identify Estate Assets

The first phase of the cleanout is usually the identification of estate assets. The cost of locating, taking personal inventory, and distributing assets varies greatly depending on the firm, but it is the most expensive aspect of the procedure. The average cost of identifying and relocating assets in the sector is $2,000 or more.

2. Identify Important Paperwork and Documents

Finding and sorting through all of the necessary papers and records is another cost of the cleanup. You can either employ a shredding service to rid of all of your no longer needed sensitive papers or do it yourself to save money.

3. Rent Storage Facility

Following the identification of all estate assets and the determination of beneficiaries for each, a storage facility may be required to accommodate the overflow of objects discovered in the estate. If this is the case, you’ll need to find a storage facility to store your items while you wait.

Perhaps the recipients are from out of state and require extra time to arrange transportation? If you need to sell your house right away and need to store excess belongings until you have time to sort?

Companies that run storage facilities charge a flat monthly payment that varies depending on the size of the container and the location of the unit.

4. Get Free Cardboard Boxes

Finding free cardboard boxes nearby is a good way to save money quickly when it comes to storing your belongings. Begin by asking grocery stores and warehouse stores if they have any extra cardboard box inventory. Instead of them paying to have old cardboard hauled away, you’ll be doing them a service by hauling it away. Tell them you need packing boxes so they don’t give you dry goods boxes instead of stinky meat or vegetable boxes.

5. Rubbish Removal Service Nearby

Ultimately, all of the remaining products must be picked up and disposed of once all of the key assets and documentation have been properly sorted through and distributed. This is when a local junk removal company steps in.

It’s extremely convenient to utilize these companies because they can usually complete the task in a few hours for a few hundred dollars. In the grand scheme of things, comparing prices against saved time and labor can be a beneficial investment. In comparison to a liquidation company, which may charge rates in the hundreds, this is also the less expensive choice.

Handling An Estate Cleanout

Managing an estate cleanup is never simple, but with a little planning and effort, you may save money and reduce the stress experienced by all parties involved. Here are six pointers to help you handle your next estate cleanout with confidence and poise.

1. Personal Property Inventory List

Clearing out a house when a loved one passes away may be a difficult and emotional experience. Recognize that you don’t have to tackle everything on your own. There are third-party planners, estate sales, and rubbish removal firms that can help you get through this process quickly and painlessly for a reasonable charge.

However, there are a few steps you must take on your own before beginning to purge an estate. Avoid making the mistake of tossing out important estate planning documents, which might cost you money in the long run. The process of probate or having a will reviewed for authenticity is the last thing you want to deal with.

Find Financial and Estate Documents

Any wills, trusts, life, and associated documents, such as life insurance policies, real estate deeds/titles, current bank statements, and tax returns, should be located and placed aside. Documents connected to tax returns, such as 401(k) or stock receipts, may be required in order to file an income tax return.

The following are important estate documents:

  • Living Trust
  • Estate deeds
  • Life insurance policies
  • Stock certificates
  • Bank statements

Identify Expensive Estate Assets

It’s crucial to distinguish between objects that can be sold and those that are precious or sentimental, and to do a comprehensive inventory. Automobiles, artwork, furniture, and jewelry are just a few examples. When an estate has a large number of antique furniture and jewelry objects, it is usually desirable to hire an estate appraiser. An hourly fee is charged by a trained appraiser who will offer you an approximate estimate for each item. The price will be determined by your location as well as the sort of evaluation you require.

2. Ask for Help

Ask friends and family for help. Pay attention to the details and try to find and keep photos and other memorabilia to pass down to family and friends. Family members can make a list of items that they would like from the estate, and while this usually works, there are situations where conflicts and disagreements can occur. If necessary, outside mediators or legal help may need to get involved and help this situation.  It’s best to resolve any conflicts yourself because an can cost hundreds of dollars per hour.

3. Hire Estate Cleanout Services

The process can be sped up by hiring real estate cleanout services.

Garbage dumpster rental

Unfortunately, some items cannot be sold or donated during the decluttering process and must be discarded. After a death in the family, renting a dumpster for an estate cleanout can greatly alleviate stress.

Obtaining a garbage dumpster is also less of a commitment than renting a storage locker. Do your homework and compare pricing in your neighborhood. The cost of renting a roll-off dumpster for 10 days to two weeks is comparable to the cost of renting a storage container for a few months.

Hire a junk removal service

There are a few reasons why hiring a junk removal service may be the best option for you and your family while dealing with a loved one’s death. A professional will have the expertise to sort out the debris amongst the recyclable items and help you get promptly rid of debris. A good company will always be committed to saving nature regardless of the type of junk you need to be removed. This process will also save you time and money.

Items a rubbish removal service should anticipate to remove:

  • Freezers, humidifiers, stoves, and other appliances
  • Lumber, drywall, paint, insulation, and other construction trash are all removed.
  • Couches, glass tables, and bedroom sets are examples of huge furniture.
  • To disconnect the electrical and plumbing systems, the hot tub must be removed.
  • Mattresses are not accepted by all waste collection firms or municipalities.
  • Recycling and disposal of old refrigerators is paid for by some utilities.
  • Liquid or solid home chemicals, medical waste, demolition waste, and so on are all considered trash.
  • Electrical conduit, copper pipes, and other scrap metal hauling
  • Television recycling and disposal There are severe penalties for improper e-waste disposal.
  • Decomposable food, cloth, glass, and paper, among other things, are removed from the trash.
  • Leaves, brush, branches, soil, gravel, stone, and other yard garbage

Rent local self-storage facilities nearby

Some circumstances necessitate the use of a local storage facility, particularly when dealing with the death of a relative who lived in a different state than you. Renting a storage trailer to transport belongings by car is another alternative.

Self-storage tips for new renters:
  • Do you require 24-hour access to your storage unit or a storage unit with a controlled temperature? When shopping, be aware of your requirements.
  • Rates and promotions are available at local self-storage facilities on a regular basis, but they vary by location and month.
  • Understand the contract and the expenses of terminating the storage rental early.
  • Inventory your belongings Itemize your belongings and keep the most important objects near the front for easy access.
  • Self-storage insurance – According to the , over one million storage units are ruined by arson annually and cause an average of $11,000 in damages.  Self-storage insurance covers your items if they’re destroyed or damaged.

Hire movers by the hour

Unless it’s a relocation, consider hiring movers by the hour for smaller jobs. Move large furniture and couches going into storage. It especially makes sense to hire by the hour since it’s likely a small space.

According to , the average cost to hire two local movers and a truck will cost $90 to $120 per hour.  If you only need the labor (muscle) to move stuff around your house like furniture, it will cost around $60 to $80 per hour.

4. Hire an estate sale company

Employing an estate sale business will take the stress out of getting the best price for all of your belongings. Many of these businesses have a devoted customer base. Their purchasers will be waiting for you at your door to buy everything in your home.

Preparing for an estate sale

Nothing should be thrown away! Many families assume they must clean up before meeting with an estate sale firm, but a reputable company should be able to convert the room for you and work with what you have. Rather than fine china and crystals, which family members may enjoy, little collectibles and old treasures that an estate agent may spot usually pile up in monetary value.

Request recommendations from friends and relatives who have previously utilized an estate sale company. Exposure during estate sales is important because it indicates whether the estate has successfully promoted itself in the marketplace.

What questions to ask before hiring an estate sale company?

Get an on-site consultation from a few prospective companies when interviewing them. This will allow them to examine any additional potential risks to the property that may not have been discussed (parking lots, closeness to resources such as a recycling facility or donation site). Inquire about staffing, insurance, and the contract’s terms.

You have the right to request a new contract or walk away if anything in the contract changes after you sign it. Taking credit cards shows that you’re serious about your business. Adding more items should not be permitted since it creates too many liability risks. When interviewing companies, shuffle unsold things into the next auction rather than making a charitable donation is also a warning flag.

How much do estate liquidators charge?

In most cases, liquidators are paid a portion of the overall proceeds from the estate sale. Rates vary by location, but the national average is roughly 35%. Don’t expect the price to cover the disposal of unsold products. It’s possible that you’ll need to hire a junk removal service or rent a dumpster.

What is the estate sale percentage?

The fees charged by all estate sale agencies are based on a percentage of the sale. The percentages in the United States range from 30% to 60%, depending on the services offered and the total projected sale value. Against popular perception, hiring a company with the lowest percentage does not guarantee you will make more money. Estate sale firms that are well-run and respectable tend to attract a higher-quality customer, which leads to more sales.

Find estate sale companies near me

A quick google search for estate sale firms near me, or asking some friends and relatives about local companies they may have used in the past, are both good methods to find respectable organizations.

5. Real Estate Cleaning Services

Real estate cleaning services are available from organizations that specialize in this field. These organizations are well-versed in what has to be done to get a property ready for sale fairly soon following a foreclosure. They’re also known as foreclosure cleanout companies.

Because some businesses are specialized, their fees may be more than those charged by a typical junk removal or cleaning service. If you desire peace of mind during this difficult time, it might be worth it. If you need to advertise your property right away and don’t have time to conduct the numerous cleanout processes separately, this is a viable choice.

6. Donate Remaining Items After Estate Cleanout

Donating the remaining belongings following an estate cleanup to charities and other resale outlets is an often ignored but crucial advice. You can donate gently used items that you no longer appreciate and give them a new lease of life by donating them. When it comes to donating your items, there are a few wonderful options to consider.

Where to donate stuff nearby?

  • Local charities
  • ReStore for Habitat for Humanity
  • Goodwill
  • PickUpMyDonations.com
  • Thrift stores or flea markets in your area

Photograph donations for charity

Taking photos of the products you donate as proof to the IRS for a future write-off is an important step that is often overlooked when donating goods to charity.

We recommend using the online tool to calculate what all your free stuff is worth.  The online tool helps you track all of your charitable donations to get the biggest tax deduction possible.  I use it every year, and it’s amazingly easy and provides peace of mind if the IRS ever audits me.

Final Words on Estate Sale Clean Outs Tips and Advice

For individuals who are affected, estate cleanouts may be an emotional and difficult period. Understanding what actions need to be completed before starting the procedure might help to alleviate a lot of the stress. Keep in mind that not everyone goes into an estate sale cleanout knowing exactly what they need to do.

Good knowledge and prior experience with a similar issue can considerably improve your chances of addressing the situation well.

Your timelines, money, and needs are the most critical things to comprehend. Build your strategy around these parameters, keeping in mind some of the helpful hints mentioned before.

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