Pearl House: My First Estate Sale


We bought this house “AS IS” which means that the previous owner left everything in place including all their junk. But was it junk? For a goodwill-loving, trash-picking, thrift-flipper like myself this was not junk! The home was owned by an older woman who had passed and left it to her son. It contained an entire lifetime worth of collected items and had been sitting for 10 plus years, accumulating that good ‘ole vintage sentiment.

I reached out to a few junk removal companies for quotes. The range was $4,000 to $8,000 just for junk removal. I also needed someone to remove the demolition debris which would easily double that number. Instead of paying someone to haul it away, I decided to sell the items and have people pay me to haul it away!

The initial week after closing we spent sorting out the obvious trash from the home items. We found an incredible amount of stuff: tons of clothes, books, home decorations, furniture, lamps, sewing supplies, cookware, umbrellas. Since the house had been boarded up in 2010 (ish) and the owner was an older woman I knew most of those items are considered “vintage”.

I tried finding companies to help me with the estate sale, but most either didn’t call me back or weren’t able to help. Instead I listed photos on facebook marketplace and found a few people interested in helping. A couple people actually came back over the weekend and helped me run the sale!

Here are a few of the items that I ended up bringing home with me and selling on Etsy.

Ultimately I made almost $2,000 selling furniture, clothes, and vintage goodies. In the end I am so happy I could save this woman’s treasures instead of throwing it in the trash. There are dozens of people that ended up bringing home items with them to enjoy for many years to come.

There is one item I look back on and still wish I never sold. Michael found a beautiful set of jade bookends that I reluctantly sold to someone. I messaged them later asking if I could buy them back but she loved them so much she didn’t want to.

I did keep a few things for myself including a beautiful painting, a pyrex baking dish, a pyrex bowl, coat rack, a towel bar, and a beautiful persian rug I had professionally cleaned. This rug was buried in the middle of a blue plastic tub. I would have never seen it if I didn’t do some digging!

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Hi! I’m Kristy Pedersen. I’m renovating houses in Philadelphia and sharing the process one step at a time.



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