How Much Do Estate Sale Companies Charge?

This is the first time you’ve sought help from an estate sale company, so how can you learn what to expect when it comes to professional estate sale services? This article explains the various services that companies offer, and the commission structures you may find. Becoming familiar with these details before you sign a contract will help you choose a liquidator you can feel good about.

How estate sale companies charge

There are usually zero upfront costs to you. Most estate liquidators earn a percentage (commission) of the total sales made during your estate sale. The commission can be a flat percentage (average between 30%-50%) of total sales, a sliding scale commission based on the selling price of each item, or a commission amount that is reduced when gross sales reach a certain threshold.

Example: You hire a company to liquidate your house at a predetermined flat percentage of 45%. After setting up, advertising, and holding a 3-day estate sale, the sales total $12,400. The estate sale company deducts 45% commission ($5,580). You do not require any additional services. You receive a check for your portion of the sale proceeds, $6,820.

Additional Service Fees/Reimbursements You can expect most estate sale companies to charge additional fees or reimbursements for extra services needed to finish the job. These are normally deducted from your portion of the sale proceeds. These expenses can include the cost of:

  • an on-site trash container (for major jobs where there is a lot of sorting/debris)

  • pest control

  • post-sale item removal (completely emptying the home)

  • an hourly rate to professionally package or box items