Don’t have time for an estate sale? Consider a buyout.

This is an excellent option if you are in a hurry to empty a house of its contents, or if you don’t have enough inventory to warrant an estate sale. In most cases a buyer will offer you a flat price to buy the contents of your home, and it will often be less than you were hoping for.

Don’t be offended or discouraged. Buyers in buyouts are looking to resell the contents in their own time and fashion, and they need to still make a profit after moving, storing, and marketing the pieces. They’re basically paying you to clean your house, and this labor-intensive effort needs to be worth their time.

If time is of the essence, look for a buyout service that will take everything: the good, the bad, and the ugly — not just cherry pick the nicer pieces and leave you with a kitchen or basement full of undesirables. A good buyout company will offer to take donations to a neighborhood non-profit — thing’s they don’t want or can’t sell — so you don’t get stuck hauling closets full of clothes or cabinets full of glassware. Some will even go so far as to hauling paint cans and other garage chemicals to the dump, so that’s one less thing for you to worry about. A good, solid buyout should leave you with an empty house, not small piles of things nobody wants.