Thanks for the advice Lyn, Warren and Bob
I think that you are right. My gut, along with my pride, states go with someone else. I have been trying to hash this out for several weeks now and I needed some experienced opinions. I usually, privately, overreact when I am upset but I usually calm down and try to think things through. I put myself in person A's position and I understand that estates must come first, especially if a death is involved. I also know that they are trying to move towards high end auctions that include some fabulous furniture. I don't have any high end furniture, just some country antiques, so I can see why I am put on the back burner, but it would be nice if they didn't keep me hanging for months and then tell me if I wanted to list items then I have to bring them in, still not giving me a date for a sale.
I'm sorry if I sounded like I was using the online auction house for all my good stuff and leftovers for the auction house. I really wasn't planning on doing that. In fact all my depression glass, most of my American pottery, marbles and what I call man stuff (you know old tools, antique hardware and such) were going to the regular format auction. Over the last few months, I noticed that these do much better at a live auction then an online auction.
I have been checking out our local auction houses as well as attending them, I'm not buying anything, just taking notes on what sells well. I have not been able to find a place that has a client base that is diverse. Most places do well with country furniture, depression glass and American pottery, but do not do so well with antique watch parts, European pottery, clocks and art glass. Some places sell jewelry at astronomical prices, and others a few dollars. One place will sell linen a piece at a time for a nice price, another will sell a whole box for a few dollars.
I have not found any other place that does as well with online auctions as my original choice, although I know that will change when they get a larger clientele. I haven't found anyone that has a spotless BBB report that does both online and live auctions. I have also asked the owners/managers of the auction houses that I have been to for information on commission and expenses and they all say the same thing. It all depends on the quantity, quality of the items. I need a straight answer before I can narrow down choices. After reading about some of the hidden expenses and high commissions, I want an upfront answer.
Is it always this difficult to find someone honest and reliable with a diverse base of customers?
Doing an onsite auction is out of the question now. I spent a month packing everything up. I refuse to get it all out again. I have filled over 80 24"x24"x18" boxes and since you helped me decide to go with one auction house, I still have about 10 more boxes to pack and I haven't even started on the marbles, jewelry, buttons and ephemera.
I will keep looking at auction houses, I heard some good things about one in Kentucky that I have to travel 3 hours to get to but I figure it's worth the drive if I find someone who fits the above criteria. (honest, reliable and diverse)
I do have crappy stuff that belongs in a yard sale, that plastic dinnerware, the nice but not outstanding dinner plates, silverware and the tons of non impressive glassware, still depression glass but nothing special and of course 4 shelves of silverplated items. I already took most of the really common items to my local goodwill. I was told by person A, not to bother bringing in my older Christmas decorations, or my lace tablecloths and linens and aprons even though they had never even seen them. That they have a limited amount of space at their warehouse to store them. (remember, they said I was to far out for an onsite auction, hence my items would be stored at their warehouse.)
So, yes, I have a couple boxes of items that are more for a yard sale than an auction but I don't have enough yard sale quality items to have a yard sale. I mostly have collectibles. No clothing or shoes, worn out appliances, avon bottles, roller skates,(except the old ones with the red wheels) no comforters, baby toys, stuffed animals, or adolescent toys. I'm still giggling about the beanie baby comments on other posts. I have those packed up in an auction box. But I am partially excusing myself for that faux pas due to ignorance of their worth. (do I get absolution if I say that I kept the Mcdonalds bags too?)
Thank You for all your advice
Located in Ohio