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Estate Appraisals and Liquidation Services

We specialize in mid- to large-sized estates located in Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex and greater North Texas area. We have more than 30 years of experience in the valuation and sale of estate personal property, estate liquidation and auction services, and are well-known for our:

  • Professional written estate appraisals
  • Extensive knowledge of local and regional markets
  • Courteous professional staff
  • Superior customer service
  • Uncompromising business ethic

Click on the links below for more information about our Appraisal and Estate Liquidation services. Contact us today to arrange a no-obligation initial consultation.


    Why do I need an appraisal?

    When accurate value determination of personal property is critical, a professional written appraisal offers the safest legally defenceable means of documenting valuation and offers maximum peace of mind to the owner/s.

    When is an appraisal needed?

    Following are the most common situations prompting the need for an appraisal:

    • Estate Settlement—Proper identification, valuation and equitable distribution to heirs
    • Divorce Negotiations—Cataloging and valuation of personal property assets
    • Insurance Qualification—Required if adding special rider coverage for specific item/s of personal property
    • Damage Claims—Establishing loss of value in preparation for repair or replacement
    • Taxable Estates—Determination of personal property values subject to applicable IRS tax regulations
    • Charitable Donation—Documenting value of donated personal property for IRS tax deduction purposes
    • General Value Determination—Understanding what you have and what it’s worth

    What is an appraisal?

    A professional written appraisal is a carefully researched document that presents an unbiased valuation of personal property for a specific clearly defined purpose and use. It includes a thorough description of the item’s appearance and condition—often including both verbal and photographic documentation, and most often, it includes examples of comparable items purchased/sold within a similar market and within a reasonable time frame from the date of the appraisal report. A professionally written appraisal will withstand rigorous examination within a court of law.

    Who will perform my appraisal work?

    All appraisal work is performed by Mr. Laurence Martin, founder and CEO of Futures Past, or by appropriate qualified specialty appraisers under his purview. As a professional appraiser, Mr. Martin adheres to the highest levels of both personal and professional honesty and integrity in order to safeguard the best interests of his clients’ and his own reputation and that of his company.

    Is the appraiser qualified?

    This is an important question to ask. There are no state or national licensing requirements for appraisers. Therefore, it is important to verify an appraiser’s professional qualifications and to request and verify references before engaging their services. Mr. Martin possesses over 20 years of experience in personal property valuation in the Dallas area. He offers an in-depth knowledge of antiques, collectibles and household contents along with a thorough understanding of local and regional markets critical to the accurate determination of market values. He is a member of the International Society of Appraisers (ISA), one of the premier national professional appraisal organizations in the United States. He has passed all core courses in appraisal report writing and is U.S.P.A.P. certified. Mr. Martin is diligent in pursuing ongoing professional development in order to maintain current knowledge of accepted professional appraisal practices and all applicable legal and ethical business guidelines. As a result, you can confidently expect to receive an accurate, honest, and confidential appraisal of your personal property.


    Assistance when you need it most

    The need may arise from the death of a loved one, a move into a retirement or nursing care facility, or a decision to downsize a home. But the emotional and logistical challenges of dealing with personal property accumulated over a lifetime—whether yours or a loved-one’s— can seem daunting. Questions such as, “What to keep?” “What to share?” “What to liquidate?” can be overwhelming. The stress and strain of answering these questions can be further amplified by an approaching deadline by which all must be accomplished. Futures Past offers a steady, trustworthy and experienced hand to help guide you through the process and lessen the burden for an executor, bereaved spouse, or close family member.

    Experience you can trust

    Our current estate liquidation staff has been with us for over 10 years. We are bonded, insured and Futures Past is a member in good standing with the Better Business Bureau.

    Turnkey service and market expertise

    Turnkey service means we handle every detail from start to finish offering you maximum return with minimum stress or worry.
    Having completed literally hundreds of successful estate liquidations in the Dallas-Fort Worth, Texas area over the past 29-plus years, we know the market. We know residential contents. And we have the experience and processes in place to safely and effectively manage the estate liquidation process to a satisfactory conclusion. We are intimately familiar with every aspect of what it takes to plan, market and manage an estate liquidation to maximize financial returns.


    “We interviewed three candidates and selected Futures Past. The estate sale has come and gone and we are convinced that our choice of Futures Past was and excellent selection. Mr. Martin performed in a professional manner and devoted the time and energy necessary to ensure a successful sale.”

    Joe H. Warren, Jr., Dallas, TX
    Estate Executor

    “Your knowledge of the market for the items, I believe, maximized the proceeds of the sale. We particularly appreciate your attention to a thorough accounting of all items and their sale prices.”

    Suzanne Cochran
    Attorney Cochran & Cochran
    (on behalf of Executor)

    “Mr. Martin has clearly demonstrated to me an unusually high degree of knowledge for pricing antiques, artwork, china and crystal, furniture, clocks, collectibles, and other household furnishings. In addition, Mr. Martin has demonstrated an ability to liquidate these items for prices at or near full fair market values. Finally, my clients have indicated to me a high degree of satisfaction with Mr. Martin’s services, and have further commented on his honesty and the manner in which he is able to deal with sentimental feelings and the psychological and emotional aspects of liquidating the possessions of a deceased loved one.”

    Mr. Howard Key, Attorney
    Vial, Hamilton, Koch & Koch

    “I saw the pictures you posted for the sale and I wanted to tell you what an incredible job you and your people did on my father’s house. It was such a mess before you got there. When my husband and I came to Texas, we spent four whole days trying to sort through it and clean, but we were barely able to scratch the surface. I was concerned that it was simply too large a task for us or or you to manage.

    The results, however, are fantastic! It looks like a completely different house! Seriously, the results are amazing, and I wanted to thank you for that. We both really appreciate your willingness to make recommendations, set things up for us, and manage the whole process, especially since we live so far away and were unable to be involved as much as we would have liked.

    Thank you for helping to make the difficult process of dealing with my father’s estate much easier.”

    Aimee Swearengin
    Family member


We are well accustomed to working with the following:

  • Family Members
  • Executors
  • Lawyers
  • Trust Officers
  • Estate Planners
  • Investors
  • Accountants and CPAs
  • Insurance Agents
  • Bankers
  • Claims Adjusters


Mr. Martin’s appraisal expertise encompasses all manner of household contents including:

  • Furniture
  • Antiques
  • Artwork
  • Collectibles
  • Jewelry
  • Clothing
  • China
  • Crystal
  • Silver
  • Ceramics
  • Major Appliances
  • Audio/Video Electronics
  • Clocks
  • Books
  • Dolls & Toys