Getting Ready
The 30 to 60 days leading up to the auction is the time for you to get questions answered, attend inspections of the property you are interested in, and determine what you can afford to spend. The actual auction is simply the time to offer the price you are willing to pay for the property.

Auctions Go Fast!
The auction itself moves fast. First-time attendees are usually surprised to learn that the sale they are attending is over within a few minutes. In many cases, if the auction is for a single home with nothing else to be sold, the entire process lasts less than 30 minutes. So, don’t be late!

On auction day, prospective buyers register for a bidder number by filling out a Bidder Card. The registration period usually begins from one hour to two hours before the scheduled auction time. There is no fee to register at the auction and high bidders may use cash or personal checks for down payment. You can also get all last-minute questions answered and tour the home one final time if you wish.

Before the Bidding Begins
The auction begins promptly at the appointed time with opening remarks summarizing, for the record, the terms of sale, the property information, the methods of bidding and any last-minute changes or disclosures. These comments usually take only a few minutes, concluding with the auctioneer answering any final questions. Then the bidding is ready to begin!


The Auction Team
Assisting the auctioneer will be bid assistants, to make sure anyone trying to bid is recognized and that all bids are recorded with the auctioneer. Bid assistants may also assist with questions during the auction, including asking the auctioneer to pause if necessary. It is not a myth that bids can be made accidentally … by scratching one’s nose and the like. But if you did not intend to bid, simply inform one of the bid assistants or the auctioneer and the mistake will be corrected. Any tie bids or other issues regarding who has the high bid are always resolved by the auctioneer, who has complete and final authority.

From the first bid, things move quickly, with bidders offering their bids up to the price they are willing to pay for the property. The auctioneer can and will say “sold” as soon as he determines that the final bid has been made. It is not necessary, nor customary, for the auctioneer to slowly announce, “Going once, going twice, etc.” He simply decides the bidding has stopped and announces, “Sold.” If the auction is for a single property, this concludes the auction, and the purchaser simply executes the contract of sale and makes the required payment.

“Buyer’s Choice” (Available at some auctions)
If there is more than one property or parcel being offered, the “buyer’s choice” method is often used. In a “buyer’s choice” sale, items will be numbered for identification purposes. The number will not relate in any way to when the property will be sold. Instead, each time the auctioneer says “sold,” the person with the high bid will choose which parcel(s) or property(s) they want to purchase by announcing the number(s) describing that property(s) or parcel(s).
The high bidder can take as many parcels or properties as they want from those that remain unsold, and in any order or combination. His or her high bid is simply multiplied by the number of properties or parcels they have chosen at that time. Once chosen by a high bidder, and unless otherwise announced, that property is “sold” and no longer available. It is therefore very important that bidders realize if they do not have the high bid, the property or properties they want could be chosen (sold) to the high bidder and will no longer be available. Sometimes, the high bidder will choose many properties at once, and in some sales, choose every property available, thereby bringing the auction to a close. “Buyer’s choice” allows buyers, not the auction company or seller, to determine how, when and at what price they will purchase property.


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