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Live Bidding vs. Absentee Bidding – What You Should Know

Friday, January 5th, 2018
Tips for live auctions from high plains auctioneers

Bidding at an auction requires strategy and skill, but there are tips and tricks to help you win that sought-after treasure. It helps to prepare beforehand and to know about different types of auctions. You should also know exactly how to bid at an auction, whether you are attending a live event or placing absentee bids.

Helpful tips for bidding at auction

When stepping into the fast-paced world of auctions, having some knowledge and tactics can significantly enhance your chances of success. The tips mentioned here will aim to arm you with the necessary insights to move through the thrilling arena of auctions!

  • First, no matter what type of auction you attend, keep a price limit in mind. Research the item beforehand and determine how much you are willing to pay for it. This will help you avoid getting carried away in the heat of the moment.
  • Look out for hidden costs such as buyer’s premium, VAT, or other taxes that might be added on top of your winning bid. These can significantly increase the final price and should be factored into your budget.
  • With some strategy, you can walk away with the winning bid. Start with an opening bid that is significantly lower than your price limit. Bidding low can keep the competition at bay and also give you room to increase your bids if needed.
  • You should also beware of the building tension during the auction, as this can lead to placing bids outside of your budget. Remember to stay calm and stick to your price limit.
  • Observe the bidding patterns of other participants. If someone is consistently outbidding others, it might be wise to back off and let them have the item. This will reduce your chances of overpaying for an item.
  • Finally, be ready to act quickly and make fast decisions. In a live auction, things can move fast, and you might only have seconds to make your bid. Stay focused and prepared to act promptly when the item you want comes up.

Live bidding

Live bidding is when you physically attend an auction. This type of auction is generally held before an audience of bidders in a gallery or saleroom. If you plan on bidding during a sale, you will need to register as a potential buyer. You should arrive at the auction early, look at the items up for bid, and remember what your limit is. Once the bidding begins, be prepared to stick with that amount. It is also a good idea to familiarize yourself with the bidding process before your item comes up.

Another type of live auction happens online, where bidders participate remotely from an outside location. This method of bidding allows you to attend an auction from the comfort of your home, while still participating in a competitive nature. With online auctions, your bid is received automatically by a remote clerk who then places it in real-time. It can be fun to bid online if you get to the right website and are able to buy the items of your choice.

Absentee bidding
  • Your absentee bid will be submitted in advance, either by written or electronic means or by phone to the auctioneer.
  • You set a limit on how high you are willing to go for the item, which will not be disclosed to anyone else before the auction.
  • The auctioneer will perform the bidding process as usual.
  • When the highest bid is announced, he will then reveal your absentee bid and see if anyone wants to increase their amounts.
  • When disclosing your absentee bid, the auctioneer will only raise the bidding in increments until your limit has been reached.
  • If your limit is not surpassed by other auction attendees, and the bidding ends you will have won the item. If the bidding goes over your limit and you don’t want to spend more, you will have lost the auction.
  • With absentee bidding, you want to be sure you know how the auctioneer will handle your bid. Starting the process with your limited absentee bid may not get you the fairest deal on an item. The item may have gone for much less had the bidding started lower. You should also know how the auctioneer will handle a situation where your bid matches a live one. Standard practice is to reveal your bid and give the live bidder a chance to increase their amount.

    Absentee vs. live bidding

    Whether you bid through an absentee bid or attend an auction and place your own, auctions are fun and exciting. Participating in live bidding increases your chances of winning, as you are able to control your amounts. However, this process has its downside at times. You may end up bidding higher than you expected or can afford if you get too caught up. The process of placing an absentee bid is less competitive and locks your top amount in to eliminate that “auction fever.” Either method will give you the potential to win an extraordinary item for a great price, though.

    To learn more about auctions, contact the experts at High Plains Auctioneers today. You can call us at (806) 244-6776 or Contact Us by email for more information about buying and selling items at auction. Don’t forget to check out our Upcoming Auctions to see what we have available!