What Measures Do Auction Sites Take To Protect Buyers And Sellers
Most auction sites offer dispute resolution for buyers and sellers and limit what methods of payment are available. For example, most auction sites dont allow wire transfers but allow payment by debit card, credit card, or PayPal. The Fair Credit Billing Act helps protect buyers when using their credit cards.
Use the auction sites in-house communication system if available. This way, should a dispute arise, the site can see the exchange between buyer and seller. Never take communication or payment offline to avoid fees because that limits your protection.
What Is An Auction
An auction is a systematic process of buying and selling products or services in an attempt to determine whom is willing to pay the highest price. Local bidders will compete by placing monetary offerings against each other in ascending order. There are various auction types, which govern how bids are placed, how the seller minimizes risk of selling under value, and how the winning bid is determined.
When The Auction Starts The Action Starts
A bell is often used to signify the commencement of the event. The auctioneer will first offer a brief description of the item and then determines a low starting minimum price that will get bidders engaged. Some auctions have the seller set the minimum bid amount so they can reduce the risk of underselling the value of the item. The auctioneer announces We will start the bidding at XX dollars. When a participants raises their bidder card it places a bid that subsequently raises the previous bid. Each bidder card raised will be acknowledged by the Auctioneer.
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Live Auctions Near Me
Did you know that Bidsquare hosts Live Auctions, Timed Auctions and Buy Now events? Simply check the icons provided on the corner of our online auction catalogs or view by clicking through the tabs located on our Upcoming Auctions page. Bidsquare is an all-encompassing online auction website with a wide range of popular categories such as Watches, Fine Art, Modern Design, Americana, Jewelry, Asian Works of Art and so much more.
When you use our Auctions Near Me map, Bidsquare makes it easy to find upcoming live auctions in your area so you can bid live online through our website or mobile app.
Registration Is How You Get Assigned A Unique Bidder Number
Anyone interested in bidding during the event must register. This is sometimes done with the auctioneer or done with administrative staff at large auctions. Registration is where you are assigned a bidder card with a number on it to uniquely identify their bids. To register you need to provide personal details such as name, phone number, address, and a personal identification number from a passport or drivers license.
Pro Tip: We recommend getting to the event 30-45 minutes before it kicks off . You can be there to hear the auctioneers opening statements, the rules governing bidding and sales, and get a good seat to be in the action. If you havent registered you may want to consider coming even earlier if you anticipate a large buyer turnout.
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How Can You Tell If An Online Auction Site Is Legit
Before buying and selling on an online auction site, look at its reputation. You can usually find real reviews on social media sites like Reddit or Facebook. Legitimate auction sites offer privacy, security, and dispute resolution.
Its important to understand that while an online auction site might be legit, there are unscrupulous buyers and sellers on most platforms. Check seller reviews before bidding on an item, and if youre a seller on a platform that allows buyer reviews, like on eBay, look at their reviews, too.
Best For Government Surplus Items: Gsa Auctions
When buying government surplus items, you want a legitimate website, and not one simply pretending to have affiliation with the U.S. government. GSA Auctions is a government website where you can buy Federal property like boats, helicopters, luxury vehicles, medical equipment, and even NASA Shuttle/Hubble items.
Its an actual government website
Use proxy bidding to indicate your maximum bid
Payments made to the U.S. Department of Treasury at Pay.gov
Must verify your information with Experian to register an account
If the auction doesnt meet the minimum reserve, you dont win the auction even if youre the highest bidder
Reserve price is never listed
GSA Auctions is the best online auction website for government surplus items because its an official government website run by the General Services Administration. Youre not paying a markup to a website pretending to be affiliated with the government. Every listing has a minimum reserve price, which means even if youre the highest bidder, you may not win the auction.
Because GSA Auctions wants to maximize the money earned, you will never know what the reserve price is. GSA Auctions returns proceeds to federal agencies and the Treasury.
There are no buyer fees, although some items may require a deposit to bid. You cannot sell items on this site because its only for government property.
Auction categories include:
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What Are The Most Popular Online Auction Sites
The most popular online auction sites include eBay, eBid, Sothebys, Copart, Auction.com, and GSA Auctions. Most of these sites offer free buyer registration and allow winning auctions to be paid for with credit, debit, money orders, and cashiers checks. Some even provide in-house financing options.
Rules Of The Auctions Near Me
The rules can vary based on the auction, type, but here are the basics of how auctions near me work
- Age Eligibility Bidding creates a legally binding contract. To bid you must be at least 18 years old.
- Auction Close The end of all bidding, once close is announced all bidding ends.
- Bids are Contracts When you place a bid you enter a legally binding contract to purchase the item if you are the winner.
- Terms for Payment Payments are made in the full amount set by the sellers agreed price and payment time frame, plus any taxes, fees, and shipping that may be incurred. Most places take credit cards, cash and bankable checks. If their is a large dollar amount associated with the sale it may require proof of funds such as a bankers check before the item changes possession.
- All Bids Are Final If you place a bid, you can not recant it.
- All Purchases are Final -Once you purchase an item, you can not return it or cancel the contract.
- Tied Bid Amounts In the event that two equal bids are placed simultaneously, the bid received first by the auctioneer is deemed the leading bid.
- Government Taxes and Regulations You are responsible for compliance and reporting with any federal, state or local tax laws related to your item if you win.
- Sellers Rights Sellers have the right to remove an item from auction, without any notice, prior to bidding
- Buyers Rights The seller must sell the item for the final bid price, regardless if the value of the item exceeds the final bid.
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How We Chose The Best Online Auction Websites
We looked at 28 online auction websites available and narrowed it down to the best options based on several features and considerations. We considered fees for both the buyer and seller, the sites online reputation, real customer reviews, and available categories. Some sites are free for buyers, and others require a membership to bid on items. Those membership fees should be reasonable.
Identify Your Maximum Bid
You should only bid on those units that can be profitable for you. If your inspection shows $3,000 worth of goods, what will your maximum bid be? How do you feel about the value of unexposed items? What is your overhead? What would you expect to profit on this unit? You will have a few minutes to figure your maximum bid but this is just one aspect of your overall bidding strategy.
It is usually a good idea to look at several units because:
You get more experience at valuations
You are not revealing your primary interest to other bidders
You might see a treasure that has special meaning or value to you
Never Show Excitement
Even if you are excited about a find, do not disclose your interest. Once you have developed your maximum bid, you will have to decide how early to enter the bidding. Be on the watch for bidders who are simply trying to raise the stakes and who have no interest in buying. Yes, they are out there and they can cost you money.
Never exceed your maximum bid. However, some bidders will try to steal the unit by offering an unexpectedly high raise. This is a time to slow down and try to assess the bidders seriousness. Always appear somewhat disinterested. Take your time bidding and respond late after displaying angst or do not bid further.
In the best case scenario, you will end up in a one-on-one bidding war. Maintain your lukewarm disposition and stick to your maximum bid of say 50 percent of the value of what you identified.
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Why Do People Auction Their Stuff
If you consider some of the high record setting prices people have sold properties and items for, its usually from an auction. A good auction company or auction house knows how to bring a large audience on front of their items. This creates a competitive environment that can drive prices up. For buyers they are hoping to get a good deal and for the seller they hope for a competition.
Best For Business Equipment: Bidspotter
Buy and sell industrial, commercial, plant, and machinery equipment through BidSpotter, which is an online auction site dedicated solely to business equipment. Sellers are professional auctioneers, and usually have companies available to ship you your items after winning.
Its free to create an account, and you only pay for your winning item
Most auctioneers have rigging/removal/delivery companies they work with to get you your assets after youve won
Some auctions allow pre-bidding so you can participate even if youre not available live
To sell, you must be a qualified and licensed auctioneer or consign your items to one of their auctioneers
Some auctioneers require a deposit and buyers premium
You must register for each auction to view and participate
BidSpotter is owned by Auction Technology Group, which had 3,600 auction houses using its technology and listed 14 million lots in fiscal year 2021. Eight billion dollars worth of items sold per year makes it one of the largest online auction websites in the world. Its the best online auction website for business equipment because it doesnt cost anything to bidyou only pay for your winning item. The auctioneers can even set you up with a company to ship the equipment to you.
Categories of equipment available include:
- Agricultural equipment
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Best For Real Estate: Auctioncom
We chose Auction.com as the best real estate online auction website because users can buy bank-owned and foreclosed homes at auction prices. Some listings have bids starting at just $1, and some properties arent for sale yet but are likely to head to auction.
Many deals close within five weeks
Offers a mobile app
Access photos and local market data for each property listed
Properties sold as-is
Most listings are cash-only
Some listings require the buyer to pay a buyers premium of 5% or $2,500, whichever is higher
With 6.3 million registered buyers and $52 billion in sales to date, Auction.com is a leader in the online real estate space. It operates in all 50 states and helps buyers purchase foreclosed, short-sale, and bank-owned residential properties quicklymany deals close in a little over a monthmaking it the best for real estate auctions.
Most vacant properties have photos of both the outside and the inside. Occupied properties dont usually show inside photos, and instead share outside and aerial views.
Each listing is sold as-is, so a buyer should perform due diligence before bidding on a property. They should also secure financing before bidding because closing can happen quickly, often in under five weeks.
Not all properties have a buyers premium, but there is always an earnest money deposit. You can filter the listings to avoid a property with a buyers premium.
Best For Auto: Copart
The best online auction website for autos is Copart because you can buy vehicles for parts or in drivable condition 100% online and have the vehicle shipped to you. Many of its listings dont require you to have a dealer’s license to purchase, which means ordinary buyers can bid on a vehicle.
If a listing requires you to have a business license, brokers or authorized representatives can bid for you
Individuals, businesses, and dealers can buy and sell vehicles
Offers both clean and salvage titles
Must have a membership to bid on a vehicle
Fees can be high
It takes effort and consistency watching auctions to know whats a good buy
There are more than 175,000 vehicles on Copart, which is an online auto auction site operating in 11 countries. It gets the nod for the best site for auto auctions because individuals, businesses, and dealers can buy and sell used, wholesale, and salvage cars, exotics, trucks, boats, ATVs, and SUVs. You can even buy and sell freightliners. Both clean and salvage titles are available on the site.
Each listing provides detailed descriptions, photos, and conditions of each vehicle. There also is a calculator to determine shipping costs to your location. Its not clear where Copart will ship, but there is a fair chance youll have to secure third-party shipping or pickup.
There are three memberships available, and you must have a Basic or Premier package to bid:
|$100,000 buying power per day
|Bid on multiple vehicles at a time
Auctions Near Me Conclusion
Auctions are very exciting, but can be overwhelming at the same time. Understanding the rules and the type of auction you are attending is just as important as what you are bidding on. The beauty of these events is they can just as easily favor the buyer or the seller. Everyone assumes some level of accepted risk. Finding your local auctions isnt difficult to do, but you should find one that has things your interested in. This is what i have learned from the auctions near me.
How Do I Place A Bid
Bidding is simple and there are multiple ways to do it such as in person, over the phone , or online. Bidding in person is raising your hand or paddle at the time you wish to bid and wait for the auctioneer to acknowledge and accept your position. Once that has happened the auctioneer will check towards you more frequently if you are in on the action.
Bidding for the first time can be overwhelming, if you are nervous someone from the auction staff may be able to bid on your behalf.
Pro Tip: Auctioneers move quick on purpose. they dont wait for slow bidders or those who cant make up their mind. Know what you are willing to spend on the item before hand and commit to that number.
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The Best Online Auction Websites For 2022
- Best for Real Estate: Auction.com
- Best for Auto: Copart
- Best for Luxury/Collector Items: Sothebys
- Best for Government Surplus Items: GSA Auctions
eBay is the best overall online auction website because its free for buyers, both seller and buyer have protections from fraud, and youre not restricted to just the United States. You can buy and sell on eBay from most countries.
Buyers and sellers from all over the world
Its free for buyers
Offers both seller’s and buyer’s protection
Seller’s fees arent uniform across categories
Final value fees can be as high as $750, depending on your category
Launched in 1995, eBay is one of the oldest and largest online auction platforms, with 142 million active buyers worldwide. Its the best overall online auction website because buyers dont pay anything to use it unless its an international buyer who may have a currency conversion fee. Plus, both seller and buyer have protections in the event of fraud.
Categories on eBay include:
- Specialty services
- Baby essentials
Anyone can sell on eBay, although there are restricted and prohibited categories. For example, you cant sell lockpicking or locksmithing devices. eBay also doesnt sell any of its own items, which means you have no competition from them as a seller.
When selling on eBay, you can use photos and video to showcase your items.
Seller’s fees depend on your category, listing price, and final sale price. Fees include:
How To Bid Online Our New Format
On the platform Live Auctioneers, Invaluable or Our Own Platform you can leave bids now and they bid for you, live during the sale. We can never see your high bid, it is confidential. The sale will begin at 11:00am on most sale days. We start with item number one and go in order to the end of the sale. At that time, if you left bids prior to the sale, the platform will bid for you. You can also bid live while the sale is happening and watch the sale live. The Platforms feature a live feed of the auction during the sale where we broadcast our staff running the sale with descriptions and live face-paced auctioneers to keep it alive!
So basically, you register to bid on the platform and click bid now live during the sale. Once the sale is over, we invoice you and arrange shipping or pick up. We are handling most shipping in house so you dont have to find a third-party shipper. If you want to pick it up, you can.