Bidding Tips for Beginners

For collectors and bargain hunters, there’s nothing like the excitement of a live auction. Auctions are equal parts sport and shopping. They’re also prime sources for furniture, artwork, and accessories.  If you’re looking for beginner auction tips, Ian Whittock has provided these do’s and don’ts before you bid.

Watch a few auctions before you join in the bidding. See how different bidders play, when they bid, how frequent they bid. You will need to figure out your own strategy once you start however watching the auctions before bidding is important.

Not all auction providers come equal. Don’t be afraid to do your homework on different companies. As solid as an auction may look, every auctioneer has a reputation in the industry. Check feedback, reviews and make sure you’re not getting scammed. You can only be confident in your bidding if you’re confident that the auction provider is fair and legit.

Always ask questions if you are in doubt. Online bidding often only features some pictures and perhaps a paragraph or two. Don’t be afraid to send the auction provider questions regarding the product as the bidding continues. Leave nothing unanswered.

Do check the payment terms before the day of the auction. Make sure the auction house accepts checks or credit cards if those are how you plan to pay. Ask about deposits and extra charges also. At some auctions, you must put down a refundable deposit when you register to bid. Don’t get into in a bidding war just because you’re feeling competitive. If you get caught up in beating the other bidder, you may end up wishing you’d lost once the auction ends and you’re committed to a high price.

Don’t bid if you’re not sure you want to buy. If yours is the winning bid, you’re committed to the purchase. You can’t change your mind after the hammer falls. You must be bold, but there are many buyers who will target sellers, asking if they will take “an offer”, and there are many sellers who will say yes, if only they’d thought of offering a “Buy it Now” option. Everyone has their price, and there’s no harm in asking. 

And there you have it. If you’ve enjoyed reading this guide and have more questions about bidding and the auctions, ask Ian Whittock for more advices on his official site.