Baby Boomers Down Sizing–How to get the most from your treasures-Vacation Home Swap

This post was written by Valerie on May 30, 2012
Posted Under: Grandma Quotes

How to get the most from your treasures


Is it me or are you noticing the large number of people (I live in California) that are “seniors” or “baby boomers” that are moving from their large homes and are not sure what to do with all that stuff? So far in just this month alone I have helped four different friends/neighbors help them get the most for their money on all that stuff they want to unload.

We were walking the dogs and one of the neighbors saw us and they were cleaning out the house next door from the post “estate sale” and the family had already taken what they wanted. The couple were antique dealers and obvious world travelers because there was a ton of things. They offered us to come take whatever we wanted. I said no…you need to sell this stuff. They said they had to get the house done by the following Monday and that day was Thursday. So I said get boxes: one for trash, one for donation and one to take to consignment stores or sell on eBay or Craig’s list. It honestly did not take that much time to figure out. Somethings that were left behind  by the “Estate Sale” team hired to have the sale was a beautiful complete set of silver plate wine, champagne glasses from Spain, several known painters in oils and water colors and the list goes on. So even if you have professional “Estate Sales” companies don’t think you won’t have treasures left over. We found boxes in the attic that they never even looked for. So a lot of really expensive treasures were hidden. That is where you can make your money.

So once we determined the things of value I had them go on line and research prices. Waterford Crystal you can find on eBay or just type in Waterford for example.

The items of value we priced and sold at a garage sale but the very expensive pieces we took to a consignment store and some were posted on ebay. So they made a lot of money and plan to use it on their trip to Europe. They rent their house out most of the summer while they make money off the rental to cover their home bills and still have money to travel. So that got me to the second group of neighbors who wanted to rent out their second vacation home during the time they aren’t in San Diego. So another neighbor and I helped them go room to room using the same methodology-boxes for trash, treasures,  and since they did not want to have a garage sale we hauled what we had to the consignment store and what they would not take took the rest to Hospice or a charity and got the tax right off.

A vacation rental in Italy

Just imagine your home in San Diego near the beach and say you have a 3000 sq. ft. home and you list it with an international rental agency and you can either swap houses or rent your home to someone from any where in the world and still pay your mortgage and have money left over, sound good? It is. Lots of people are doing that now and still are able to afford to keep their home. Some are doing it just to be able to cut expenses while traveling around the world.

I spoke to a couple today that travel all the time and decided to move from their larger home and left all the furniture and dishes etc. and are moving into their smaller home and furnishing it with all the things they can from a consignment store. So for example you can get a full patio furniture set that would normally cost $3K plus for $1K and looks like new.

Sounds good to me.

Now another story I heard today was from several “new grandparents” with children that live close by. They baby sat and baby sat till their arms felt like they were falling off so they decided to move into a smaller place to not have much room available thus limiting themselves to only one child at a time. Funny but true. One woman told me today she is going to get a part time job because she is so exhausted from just a few hours of babysitting. We both laughed but she meant it.

So whatever your reason. Know you have options and those options are working out for a number of people. Also, don’t let your mounds of collectibles bog you down if you want to live simply (and not anger your family when you pass on leaving them with all this stuff to get rid of).

My daughter called me after the horrible fires in San Diego one year laughing and said to me that wasn’t I sad. I said sad about what and she said that your house did not burn down so you don’t have to get rid of all that stuff.  We laughed but I love my stuff and  at least for now I don’t want to part with much of it but I will have a method ready for them if I die before I get rid of my “collections”. Lots of boxes-marking pens, trash, keep, sell and give away.


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