KEY Estate Sales: The Blog
The one thing I love most about conducting estate sales is learning about new and interesting items that I have not seen before. I love the thrill of finding that hidden gem in a dusty attic, researching it, and learning about its provenance, its uses, and its value.
Which is why I love the George Foreman Grill.
The George Foreman is the polar opposite of all of that, because it is in EVERY HOUSE IN THE WORLD. Even if you are saying right now, "I don't have a George Foreman grill", you do, it's somewhere. It may be in a box in the basement or in that cabinet that no one goes in over the fridge or maybe it even made its way to the circular file in the garage, but it's somewhere. In other words, to me the George Foreman Grill is like going home. There is a comfort to knowing that it will be in every house I walk into. There will be a bathroom, a kitchen, at least one bedroom and a George Foreman Grill.
In 2009 my George Foreman grill count was at 194. Some people count sheep, some count pennies, I count George Foremans. Nothing wrong with that, we all have a hobby. I have lost count since then, but I would have to estimate that in the 250+ sales that we have conducted since 2009, hang on, let me do the math here. That's right, we have found and sold 700 million more of them. A lot of homes are multiple Foreman grill homes (or MFGH's for short), meaning, various sizes of the Foreman grill can be found in a single residence. I would venture to say that we sell as many Foreman grills as our local Target, maybe more.
Please don't think I am in any way speaking poorly of the George Foreman grill, as a matter of fact, I love them. I own 2 of them and as a 20+ year vegetarian, I make my Portobello mushroom sandwiches on it every week. Not to mention the brilliance behind it's non-sticking clam shell design... So simple, yet so effective. I just find it fascinating that we all have one. It may be the one thing that brings us together- that as humans we are all linked by our George Foreman grills.
There are absolutely other common estate sale items. Entertainment armoires (don't get me started again on those), Pyrex, Jenga, hanging carved coconut heads, magnets with clever sayings on them... None of them as prevalent as my friend the GF grill. So whether you are starting a GF collection or maybe you're just looking for a backup, either way grab one at our next sale, we sell them in the $5-$20 range- save some money and enjoy the Lean Mean Grilling Machine!
Okay my wonderful customers- we need to talk about TV armoires. They are so incredibly versitile and please don't even get me started on all of the Pinterest ideas for them!
Many of you have probably read the fascinating article (below) I wrote that was published on the Patch, (Seriously, no one read that article, I am totally kidding) so my apolgizes if you already read this.
I can't sell an armoire/entertainment center. I used to. I used to watch them being moved by two, three, sometimes four strong men with big backs and bigger hernias who would load them into empty trucks, vans and SUVs. Seeing a 400 pound solid Cherry Walter E Smith monstrosity being carried down a sweeping staircase in a million dollar home, to me, is as nerve-wracking as watching my 16 year old drive in the snow for the first time.
They used to sell; there was a good demand for them even. But then... the flat screen TV became...affordable. Now that we all head over to Costco and give flat screens for Christmas, out goes the tube TV AND the entertainment armoire that housed them. My parents have one. My in-laws have them. We had to buy them flat screens that are less than 35" so they could fit them into the entertainment center. We told them we could mount them on the wall. Or buy them a nice small stand so they could put their VCR and VHS tapes in it...but they wouldn't go for it. They are loyal to their entertainment centers. Perhaps they are holding up the ceiling in that part of the family room. My dad always was a stickler for sound structures...
My clients don't understand. They think I have something personal against their entertainment center, but I don't. It's nothing personal...I had one. I agree that 10 years ago they were functional. It hid the cords that I hated looking at and housed my husbands growing collection of components. And it was just a sharp looking piece of furniture. Put all my VHS tapes in it...Titanic, Terminator (all 3), Toy Story, Terms of Endearment...A lot of "T" movies, aren't there? (By the way, we can talk about the many uses of VHS tapes in a later blog post) Anyway, my clients feel that they spent $500-$8000 on an entertainment armoire, they should be able to get something for it. I completely agree, but my customers are just not buying them.
Oh, I've tried reasoning with everyone...
You could put shelving in it and put your clothes in it!
You could turn it into a computer armoire/desk...
Put it on it's back, take the shelves and door off and it's a toddler bed! (Pinterest by the way demonstrates how these can make a lovely changing table... Just sayin...)
Turn it on it's side and put the flat screen on top?
20's something crowd: Bar? No.
They just don't like entertainment centers and just do not appreciate their versatility What do we do with them? Craigslist? Armoires "R" Us? What happens to the T-Rex of all furniture pieces? I don't know...I will give it some thought though and try to come up with a plan for them while I watch my 60" 3D LCD conveniently mounted over my fireplace. Perhaps I will come up with a solution for all of my VHS tapes as well...