Auction house offers senior relocation services


Tim Maniscalo was quickly convinced of the value of Scheerer McCulloch’s services.

When Maniscalo’s father Tom died at age 93 two years ago in Fort Wayne, his family called the auction house, which is based in Fort Wayne.

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“There were five kids in the family and none of them lived in Fort Wayne,” Maniscalo said. “My mother had passed away a few years before that, and we were in a situation where we had all of his possessions. He was a big model train collector. We were just kind of overwhelmed with the whole task. How do we sell this house? Who do we go to sell the trains and things like that? He was a little bit of a pack rat, so we had a lot of stuff he kept over the years.”

Owner Tim McCulloch told him about the complete turnkey service.

“They came in and auctioned off all the personal possessions, furniture, his trains, anything that had value,” Maniscalo said. “They cleaned up the house. The house appraised at $194,000. We sold it that night at a live auction for $254,000. It was a great service, and the way they performed was just great.”

In early 2022, McCulloch called Maniscalo to tell him he wanted to establish Scheerer McCulloch in central Indiana and would Maniscalo be interested in joining.

“Having experienced the service, I thought it would be a great way to end my career,” said Maniscalo, who became a senior vice president in April 2022. “It was a great opportunity for me. It’s a unique offering we have.”

A Zionsville resident, Maniscalo previously worked for eight years as president and chief executive officer of the Better Business Bureau, serving central Indiana. Prior to that, he worked 30 years at Dow AgroSciences.

Maniscalo said the goal is to specialize in either downsizing for those that want to move to a smaller home or perhaps a senior living or assisted living home.

“We specialize in taking the hassle out of downsizing and maximizing the revenue that someone gets for all of their things in their estate,” he said. “We don’t buy your furniture or your car or your house on the cheap. Our goals are very much in line with the owners’ goals or the heirs’ goals.”

For instance, if a senior has a health issue and has to move into assisted living after getting out of rehab, Sheerer McCulloch’s senior relocation service sets up an online auction to sell possessions that wouldn’t be moved.

“We have a trash removal service,” he said. “We’ll market the house for about 30 or 40 days. We’ll have two open houses and then do an auction for the real estate. We can do any of those services or we can do all of them.

“If someone wants to have a traditional Realtor, we could still take care of all the personal possessions and get the house ready to show.”

Maniscalo said his team can take photos of possessions and then offer an estimate range on the high and low ends. The same procedure is true for the house. Sheerer McCulloch would include in the proposal its expenses costs and commission to give the person an idea what to expect from the estate auction.

Maniscalo said the company is focused on quality.

 “Tim McCulloch wants to make certain that everyone is served professionally, and that’s why he does the hiring, because he wants to make sure he has control over that,” Maniscalo said. “We want to make sure when someone comes into your house and we perform a service that we’re professional, we do what we say we’re going to do (and) hopefully under-promise and over-deliver.”

Maniscalo said auctions typically start on a Monday and last a week.

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