As seen in the Kansas City Star
Jimmy & Kaye NIckell chose auction as their downsizing strategy.

“The thought of downsizing was overwhelming,” says Kaye Nickell. She and husband, Jimmy, decided to simplify the process and sell their home and unneeded contents via auction.

Roughly 10,000 Baby Boomers turned 65 today and that daily pattern will continue until 2030, according to Pew Research Center population projections. By that time, say the projections, 18% of the nation’s population will be 65 or older.

Along with aging comes changes in housing preferences and needs. Often for “seniors” that involves moving from a comfortable and familiar home filled not only with memories, but also with the tangible evidence of a full life. Even in the fortunate circumstance of having found a new place to live, seniors, and the adult children who assist them, must still figure out what to do with the current house and all the belongings that won’t fit in the new place.

This is precisely the downsizing circumstance that Jimmy and Kaye Nickell had been contemplating for the last several years. Their beautiful Overland Park home was more space than they needed or really wanted to continue to care for. They also were feeling it would be beneficial to live closer to family in the northland. When they found the perfect new home earlier this year, they then faced the critical decisions about how to sell their current house and all the belongings that wouldn’t fit in their new, smaller place.

After researching options, they determined that the simplest and best way to take care of everything was a marketing strategy that enabled them to schedule the sale of their home and contents on the date of their choosing. Jimmy says, “There is so much involved in downsizing and moving, that it was a huge relief to know that our house and all the items we couldn’t take with us would be sold at fair market value in a matter of weeks.”

The Nickells made the decision to contract with Cates Auction & Realty Co., Inc.. Jeff Cates says it was the perfect solution for them. “They have a great home and furnishings, but just didn’t want to worry about the rest.  They were ready to focus on settling in to their new place. We have removed all the pressures of listing and selling their home, the hassles of dealing with the sale of their contents, and the unknowns of how long it all might take.”

The Nickell’s home at 11100 W. 120th Street in Overland Park, Kansas, is on the market and will be sold in a live/online auction on October 30, 2015 if not sold before. Pre-auction offers are also being considered.  It is four bedroom, four-and-a-half bathroom home in “Nottingham by the Lake.” The custom kitchen is on the main level along with hearth room, dining and living areas and the master suite. The finished walkout lower level has additional living space. According to Cates, the 3,830 square foot home is well maintained with numerous updates and is even pre-inspected. It sits in a maintenance-provided community and includes a one-year home warranty for the high bidder.

While Kaye says she loves all the furnishings from her old home, she was at a loss when it came to figuring out what to do with the things that wouldn’t fit in the new house. “The thought of downsizing was overwhelming, but once we decided on auction, the wonderful Cates staff carefully catalogued all our items to place in an online auction.” Bidding on the Nickell’s remaining contents will open October 19, and run through November 2, 2015.

Many of Cates’ real estate clients are moving or downsizing and have personal property to sell in addition to their homes. While that has been true since the company’s founding 73 year ago, it’s only in recent years that such sales have been moved online. Carrie Dilbeck is Cates’ Personal Property Auction Coordinator. “Our current online personal property sales are bringing far more bidders to the process because it is more accessible and convenient” she says. “Without a doubt, it’s the most effective way for a home seller to quickly take care of unneeded belongings and in turn, it’s a wonderful opportunity for buyers to find quality items” she adds.

Overland Park downsizing

To simplify their downsizing, Jimmy and Kaye Nickell are selling their 4 bedroom Overland Park home at auction on October 30th.

The Nickells and Cates staff are all looking forward to the sale. Open houses will be held on October 11th, 18th and 24th, from 2:00 to 4:00 p.m. and photographs may be seen at, along with auction terms and documents. Cates staff is happy to answer questions at 816-781-1134.

Kaye sums it up nicely, “We’ve cared for this home for over 15 years and now it’s time for someone else to enjoy it. While I’d love to take all of my things with me to the new house, it’s just time for some of them to go. Thankfully for us, it’s all being taken care of!”