Go round and round — when Debbie Lund hopped from floor to floor in a massive Victorian building in Woodsdale, where she knew all the light switches and crouched her head as she walked through the basement. It was clear that I knew exactly. This is what happens when antiques professionals spend months inventorying every nook and cranny of a home.
Or books and cranny. The sale — the result of John and Marianne Hazlett moving closer to their children and grandchildren — amounted to about 5,000 books. Lund took care of each before we set off on different routes.
Most were rated, marked with color dots to indicate price, and sold at open house tag sales. Some, including a list of Civil War West Virginia soldiers, were thought to be held in museums. One of hers was a selection of vintage maps, so rare that she was considering auctioning them through Christie’s in New York.
“There’s still work to be done, but we’ll get there,” Lund said of the books and remaining pieces, from toy soldiers to small pieces of furniture.
And Hazlett’s sale was just one of nine she handled over the summer. Her Lund, who co-owns her Sibs Antiques and Quality Furniture with her brother John Woodling, says that making multiple such sales at any given time is really a staple in her three-generation antiques career. He said it was a focus.
deep roots, wide road
When her grandparents opened Litten’s Antiques in Coleraine in the 1920s, it would have been difficult to imagine where Lund would eventually take over the business. Or even when her teacher’s parents had auction sales as her side business.
Some household sales still involve auctions, as did Lund’s son, Richard Lund, whose brother Woodring made the call. As the owner of Coin Cash), we bring a 4th generation spin to the family business.)
Households with many items may be better suited for on-site tag sales, Lund said. The possibility of touring the historic home, she said, could attract potential customers. That’s the main reason why we added a TV ad to our regular newspaper ad for the Hazlett sale.
In addition, online sales may be necessary for other households, such as those with limited parking or those whose owners do not want people on their premises, she added. Her one of GC&P Road’s recent customers fell into that category.
“‘I need everything from home,'” Lund said of how the call came. Lund cataloged, priced, posted and tidied up her entire home in 10 days.
Lund, who entered his first auction as a runner at the age of five, said he struggled to acquire this kind of ability. Many people are involved in selling tags…because it looks like easy money. “
But that’s not the case, said Lund. She pointed out that a large part of the learning curve is knowing how to price things, and that skilled research is required if an item is unfamiliar. Knowing the difference between “vintage glassware” and “Hobbs glass” manufactured by South Wheeling can influence pricing in a positive way for sellers.
“We have to do everything we can for these people based on where we are,” Lund said. She maintains a partnership with Christie’s in New York on items the local market can’t stand.
Money is part of the antiques equation. “I’ve been making a living this way since college,” Rand explained. “I actually went to college for a few years.” But she noted that her emotions were another factor.
“I have a house full of antiques and I don’t know what to do with them. That’s how they usually come to us,” Lund said of his clients.
When asked by the son or daughter of a recently deceased parent, shoppers sometimes wonder why the children don’t want to keep everything, Lund said. However, she noticed that the average age of everyone involved rose over time.
“Nobody in their 70s wants to add another household,” she said. “They get the candy dish they rattled as kids and that’s it.”
But sometimes I get calls from living homeowners who are downsizing or demolishing one of their two homes. Keepers are often in Florida. That train of thought brought her a cautionary tale.
When a woman in her 90s called to see her overstuffed home, Lund said the woman had tagged only a handful of items as worthy of rehome. I noticed “I looked and ‘What about China?'” she asked. What about glassware? “I didn’t think anyone would want it,” she said. “
Still, someone somewhere generally does, Lund said. She pointed out that almost everything is circular. For example, “brown furniture”, which fell out of favor during the painted wood trend, is back.
“It seems to give people a sense of security that things are going somewhere,” Lund said of such surveys of market trends. “They never end up in the trash.”
To that end, Lund admits that not everything will sell. She also works with clients on donations to non-profit organizations such as museums and youth support services. “The landfill doesn’t need anything else.”
Retired transferee John Haslett from the financial sector hears it. “There were a lot of extras in there,” he said of the long family’s downsizing of the 4,500-square-foot Echo Point home to a 1,300-square-foot residence.
While he hopes that each and every extra will be appreciated by someone else, he said there are also feelings associated with letting it all go. She said she especially misses being able to read books from her collection.
I’m just saying no
Lund offered a final caution by saying he likes seeing the house in “dirty” condition. She explained that well-meaning relatives can turn trash into cash.
For example, she once came across a small but unusual tin that sold for $650 at an online auction. Similarly, the original bill of sale for the 1950 Oldsmobile — a piece of paper — sold for her $60. “You just don’t know,” she said.
The home may contain valuables that are even more valuable than they seem at first glance, she added. Once, she found the last will and testament that her family had been desperately looking for.
Lund, with a decidedly curiosity-minded smile, said she was back in the depths of such cataloging. The contents of a house in the historic district will go up for sale in mid-September.