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Old 09-09-2011, 11:09 AM
 
10,200 posts, read 13,925,940 times
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My Father had a house packed and a single garage packed with personal items, not to mention the attic. There were items we wanted for sentimental reasons, items that we wanted for our own use or the use of our important people. Then there were items that we really did not need, could not use. Some of these were given away, some sold, some discarded, and many items boxed up and stored.

I've got an Uncle age 88. His house is packed with 70 years of personal items and gifts from his massive family structure. His attic is packed, he has two car garage that is packed with every tool you'd ever need and no room to even park a car. And a huge basement with bathroom, office, on and on.

I sure hope my Uncle lives to be 110. He is the most physically and mentally alert person I have ever known for his age. If he is not a 100 year old 12 years from now, then I doubt the world will ever see another centurian.

He has 3 kids, and close to 15 grand kids and great grand kids.
The adults all have their own houses and all furnishings like furniture, kitchen appliances of all kinds, electronic devices, etc.
Absolutely they will all want many, many of their Father-Grandfather's personal items. I have to believe at some point everyone will have chosen or been given the items they want and need and can use for themselves or their friends. At that point there will be items left.

How would you put into words, a way to let the son's and daughters of my Uncle that there might be 2-3 items I would love to have.

I know what they are and they are things I could use with a value of under $100, at most.

I'm not finding the proper way - right words, to ask if they will have a yard sale, or estate sale, etc.

This question to them, many weeks after they have laid to rest their beloved Father. This event is in the distant future based on his health.

We did not have a yard sale or estate sale for my parent's personal items. We divided things and did what we wished, with our share.
In my Uncle's case, the amount of personal property, and personal items, is massive.

I am very confident that I could ask my Uncle to leave me these 2-3 items, saying it is a joke like way. He would not think anything negative about me asking for the items (valued at $100 when his entire estate is worth over $1.5 million. I do not think his son's would like it, though.

So, what words to use to ask the survivors, if they will have a yard sale or estate sale, for items the family members can not use, and do not want, at that point in time, in the distant future?

Thanks.
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Old 09-09-2011, 11:32 AM
 
Location: Arizona
459 posts, read 1,002,519 times
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Once he passes, you could tell them how much your Uncle meant to you and you would like to have a couple of little things to remember him by. If it is easier, mail them a nice card expressing your feelings about your Uncle and then mention the items, focusing on the memories they will bring you. I don't think they would mind. Or, you could ask your Uncle now if he still uses those items and if not, would he like to give you an early inheritence? Maybe joke about it but tell him those certain items have some meaning for you. Not sure how he would take that though.
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Old 09-09-2011, 11:43 AM
 
Location: NYC
1,723 posts, read 3,195,381 times
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If your uncle is still alive, it would incredibly tactless to ask for some of his possessions after he's gone at this point. Personally, I'd get really angry. Not all kids.. even those who are in their 30s, 40's or even 50's want to admit that their loved ones may not be around forever.

Wait until he's gone and then say something like the poster above suggested.
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Old 09-09-2011, 11:49 AM
 
10,200 posts, read 13,925,940 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jksn75 View Post
Once he passes, you could tell them how much your Uncle meant to you and you would like to have a couple of little things to remember him by. If it is easier, mail them a nice card expressing your feelings about your Uncle and then mention the items, focusing on the memories they will bring you. I don't think they would mind. Or, you could ask your Uncle now if he still uses those items and if not, would he like to give you an early inheritence? Maybe joke about it but tell him those certain items have some meaning for you. Not sure how he would take that though.
ok, very helpful comments.

I think it would be far easier to ask-tell-joke to the Uncle now, versus trying to find the words to his son's afterward. I'm not exactly on my cousins list of persons. They don't call or visit me, but the Uncle does.
But, then again the Uncle might not like people thinking about his demise. However, he just left for a trip across the country to see his retired relatives, and he said it will surely be his last trip. So he periodically says he won't live forever. In reality, he is absolutely correct.
5-6 Americans die, every minute of every day.

May we all live to be 100 and defy the insurance companies who are tired of paying out medical bills. (joke)
May we all die in our homes, and in our sleep. (no joke about it)
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Old 09-09-2011, 12:23 PM
 
Location: central va central me south fl
123 posts, read 235,385 times
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why wait for his death, just ask him if he is wants to get rid of them, you would like to buy from him. if it just small item, he may not even know he has them.
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Old 09-09-2011, 01:30 PM
 
Location: San Antonio, Texas
777 posts, read 926,383 times
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I would talk to the Uncle now and not be joking...I would say it straight on.."I respect you and your work etc..etc.. and I would like to buy your orbital sander, or buy it from the estate when you pass" I had a conversation with a daughter about this..she said that when her Mother was ill the neighbors would come around and ask about this and that and the children felt that they were vultures and treated them badly...when she passed and they had "the garage sale" no one from the neighborhood attended and they ended up giving alot of her stuff to charity. When her father was ill, when the neighbors (different neighborhood) brought food, the children told the neighbors that if there was anything they wanted there would be a sale of sorts...I loved this part... it was a story sale..if you knew the person and you could tell a story about an item and the person it was yours..and they made a video of the stories!!!! the next day was a regular sale...they gave very little to charity.
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Old 09-09-2011, 03:02 PM
 
10,200 posts, read 13,925,940 times
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I'm not sure how to ask his son's, if they plan to have a yard sale.

My Uncle has admired a couple items I have. Metal loading ramps for a pickup truck. And my storage building, that was a steal of a deal.
I could use his brown road side yard cart, and 1-2 of his chain saws.
I might think to send him an e-mail (he is hard of hearing so spoken words might not get through) and say " I know how you like my storage building and truck ramps. I've decided to name you in my will to receive these items." Then some how ask for his brown trash can and chain saw.

I've been to quite a few estate-yard sales (some even have the house for sale and the vehicles)
So such sales are not so rare.
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Old 09-09-2011, 03:06 PM
 
Location: Kenmore, WA
7,359 posts, read 6,236,007 times
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I don't think you have to joke about your request -- that would denigrate it. Why not just tell your uncle what you like about those three things, in their personal significance to you, and ask him if he would bequeath them. At his age, he's given adequate thought to end of life issues. Don't sweat it. Just be sincere and respectful.
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Old 09-09-2011, 04:09 PM
 
27,031 posts, read 38,285,206 times
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Sometimes you fall into it without realizing.

One Christmas at my mothers house my grandmother brought food in a large bowl. When we were cleaning up my aunt was washing it, and when I saw what it was I said, "I'm surprised grandma serves food in that bowl. It has to be very old and is too beautiful to take a chance on breaking.", and didn't think about it again.

Apparently my aunt told her what I said because grandma gave me the bowl later that day because I had admired it so much. I got another beautiful bowl from her on my birthday.

Sometimes things just happen.

My point here is that if you express admiration for those items it may happen on it's own.
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Old 09-09-2011, 09:28 PM
 
10,546 posts, read 7,538,478 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by taiinuk12 View Post
why wait for his death, just ask him if he is wants to get rid of them, you would like to buy from him. if it just small item, he may not even know he has them.
I agree. If you want the items, just tell him that if he's got no use for them, you'd like to buy them. Why do you feel the need to joke about it?

There's simply no appropriate way to approach the subject with him or his heirs about his bequeathing the items to you, before he dies. That's tacky, tacky, tacky.
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