Consignment FAQ

Q: What types of items can you help me sell?
We specialize in High Quality Furniture. But we also handle a variety of accessories. Accessories that sell well include- Sterling Silver, Pictures, Paintings, China, Porcelain Pieces, Jewelry, Lamps, Rugs, and Fireplace Tools. As a general guideline, we have a minimum starting price of $25 per item.(Metals License #01-2669)

Q: What are your consignment terms?
Items are consigned for a 4 month period. After 30 days, prices on any unsold items will be reduced by 15%. After 60 days, the price will be reduced by an additional and final 15%. The customer receives 60% of the selling price. Checks will be mailed to the consignor by the fifteenth of the month for items sold during the previous month. A $1 handling fee is deducted from each check.

Q: How do I know if my furniture is “high quality”?
A good place to start is by browsing the “manufacturers” drop down list on our website. It will give you some of the most popular brands we sell. Another way is to browse our website by “category”. This will give you an idea about the different styles that sell well in our store.

Q: My merchandise has some bumps and bruises. Is there any way to make it look more appealing for potential buyers?
Before putting your furniture in front of our customers, we make sure it is showroom ready. In our “Prep Shop”, furniture is cleaned, brass polished and loose knobs tightened. But we can’t turn a sow’s ear into a silk purse! So it’s important that we accept only furniture that has been very well cared for it’s entire life. If needed, our workshop experts can help make a small blemish disappear.

Cornerstone is Baltimore’s Only Consignment Store with a dedicated “Prep Shop”!

Q: Will Cornerstone buy my items?
In most cases, we will offer to buy or consign your furniture. Accessories and most other items are done only on consignment. Either way, expect a good return, fair treatment and prompt payment.

Q: Can Cornerstone help me determine the value of my item?
Not sure what your pieces are worth? Is your family heirloom a treasure, or just a doorstop? With over 28 years in business, and hundreds of satisfied consignors, Cornerstone has the expertise to help you determine what the market will bear.

Q: My item is too big to bring to the store. Can you have someone come to my house to determine how much my item is worth?
Doctors don’t make house calls, but we do! In most cases, an experienced Cornerstone professional can assess your belongings on your premises. Start the process by using the “Contact Us” button to email pictures of your item(s). Or stop by the store to tell us about your things and bring photos if possible. Describe the condition as best you can as well as the manufacturers name if available. Include your name and phone number on your email.

Q: Can Cornerstone assist with my Estate Liquidation?
Whether you are selling one piece, or a complete household, Cornerstone can help. We will tailor a program to your individual circumstance by putting you in touch with local professionals that can help with organizing needs, haul away and clean out services, and more. Large items and small, antiques and newer vintage pieces, put Cornerstone’s years of service and connections to work for you.

Q: I don’t have a truck. Can Cornerstone come pick up my furniture?
Consigners can take advantage of Cornerstone’s delivery service. Cornerstone’s truck and our trained movers are available to transport furniture from your place to ours. We’ll give you an exact quote ahead of time, and deduct the fee from your first consignment check. If we purchase your furniture, there is no hauling charge.

The Consignment Process Step by Step

Furniture
1. What We Take. By visiting our store or looking through our website you will get a good feel for the types of things we sell- mostly high quality classic “period style” furniture or furniture that fits in with today’s urban lifestyle as well as the fine accessories and higher end collectibles that go with it. Only furniture in good condition sells at a good price. Just think that if you were a buyer what condition it would have to be in for you to consider it.
2. Contact Cornerstone. Either call or email us. 410-561-3767 or Sometimes by phone we can determine whether we should come to see you first, need to see pictures first, or that we can’t sell it at all. In many cases we can refer you to other resources to fill your needs if we can’t help.
3. Seeing What You Have. A picture is truly worth a thousand words. Always feel free to email photos, send photos, or bring photos to us of the things you have to sell. When we determine that you have furniture we can sell, we will set an appointment to come and see you. For small items (silver, prints, china, etc.) we ask that you call ahead and make an appointment to bring them in for us to review with you at our consignment counter. We can also look at furniture for you right at our door, just call ahead to set a time. Where ever we see your furniture, a thorough examination is critical to establishing the right price, so we need to be able to see it easily- not stacked, covered,or stored tightly.
4. How We Determine Price. Because we handle a multitude of brands- ones that are still made, and many great brands that are no longer in business, we have extensive experience in determining the value of your items in the secondary marketplace. Current market value is based on form, quality, condition, demand, what the piece would cost new, and our store’s past experience. We will consult with you to determine the starting price of all items.
5. Consign vs Selling Outright. Once we determine what furniture of yours we can help with, you can consign it, or in many cases have the option of selling it to us outright. Consignment terms are: 40% commission with a starting price and the possibility of 2- 15% markdowns- one after 30 days and a final markdown after 60 days. The contract runs for a period of 4 months. Payment is made by the 15th of each month for items sold the previous month.
6. The Modern Age of Technology- has given us a tremendous reach and there are upsides and downsides. For those of you who contact us from a distance we will determine whether it is feasible to try to consign your items based on what you have and how far you are from us. Because condition is so important we are hesitant to take things without examining them first. We have to make a tough call sometimes about the practicality of consigning from a distance. We consider these requests on a case by case basis. We’re always happy to talk to you about it. The upside from all of this technology is that furniture on our website gets great “reach”. It is amazing how many people all over the country are furniture shopping from their home computers, work computers (you know who you are), and other electronic devices. I don’t think we’ve heard from Alaska or Hawaii yet.
7. Getting it To the Store. Once we’ve determined that our store is a good fit for your items, you are welcome to bring or send your pieces to us with just a phone call ahead. We also have our own team of trained furniture movers available to you for a fee (you’ve probably seen our truck in your neighborhood).
8. Getting it Sold. Once we polish your pieces in our prep shop they are photographed and posted to our website. We update our website throughout the week, every week, removing sold items and posting the latest arrivals! This commitment has built us a large online following. We have been noticing more and more over the years that people who see our website show up from Delaware, Pennsylvania, Virginia, New Jersey, etc. with houses to fill. When they get here we have a great sales staff to help them. We also maintain a huge “want list” of people who are searching for specific pieces. Our custom software allows us to email interested patrons a photo, price and measurement of furniture items that fit their needs. Finally, our 9,000 sq. ft. store is located in the middle of an upscale metropolitan area. We take great pride in displaying your items in our clean, easy to shop showroom!

Small Items
If you are unsure of what we take, just call. We do well with higher end collectibles, nice porcelain, good sets of china, sterling silver, unusual silverplate, better jewelry, paintings, prints, good fireplace accessories, nice lamps, and Oriental rugs. We take small items at our consignment counter Tuesday through Friday from Noon to 4pm. Our consignment manager came to us through the antique business and that is a great advantage for you if you have older things to sell. Small items are on consignment terms only.(Metals License #01-2669)

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