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Estate Sale is An Auction? Yep – the law says so….

We see Estate Sale signs on every corner in every county we travel – and for the most part – the Estate Sales folks will tell you that it is a Tag Sale. An Estate Sale, also called a Tag Sale in some parts of the country, is a way of liquidating the belongings of a family or estate. In some parts of the country, places like Estate Sales.net will make the determination for you of what definition they have of an Estate Sale versus Estate Auction.

But not in North Carolina. Did you know your Estate Sale professional needs to be a licensed auctioneer according to the Law?

North Carolina General Statutes 85 B states specifically: ‘“Estate Sale” means the liquidation by sale at auction of real or personal property of a specified person.’

If you contact an Estate Sale company, there are things you need to ask right off the bat:

  •  Are you licensed, and what is your license number?
  •  Can you get a letter from your licensing agency that you are in good standing?
  •  Are you a member of the local Estate Sales Professional Association?
  •  Are you bonded?
  •  If I believe that you have not done something ethically, what agency can I send a complaint to to remediate the claims?

Nearly 100% of the time, they will say they are not licensed, they are not able to get a letter in good standing (But can show you emails from clients about how good they are), they are not a member of a professional organization, they may be bonded, but not for much, and there is no where you can go if you have a complaint. Why risk it?

An auctioneer is licensed by the State  has a complaint process, has yearly Continuing Education that needs to be taken to continue their licensing, and the Auctioneers Association of North Carolina has a code of Ethics that each Auctioneer is sworn to on joining the Professional Association.

Why wait for the price to fall over a three day weekend when in one day you get the best price all day?

Disclaimer: Guides are submitted by readers and the views expressed belong solely to the author.

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Matt Price is a first generation auctioneer and REALTOR who has 12 years experience in selling online using the tools of yesterday, and today with simulcast auctions for personal property, real estate and municipal surplus. He has been on the forefront of marketing the goods since 1997 starting on eBay and moving off the platform in 2008. Now primarily selling through Price Auctions & Estates Website and Proxibid, offering live, online and simulcast auctions, and has been published in several magazines on subjects such as legalities of selling online, sales tax, and computer equipment.