We can all feel a bit nervous when we are outside of our comfort zone. Attending an auction for the first time can feel a bit similar. The good news is there is no reason to worry! Auction terminology can be easily explained. If you want to master (not just to attend!) your first auction, keep reading!
Whether you are attending a traditional or online auction, the terminology used is the same. Online auctions have become the perfect method during 2020 to buy safely from the comfort of your home.
It is important to familiarise yourself with the terminology so that you don't panic during the auction! It helps you to stick to your buying plan without any distractions.
Here are some terms you need to know, easily explained for your peace of mind!
Absentee bidder: Is it possible to not attend to the auction on the day? Yes, it is! An absentee bidder is a person who may not attend the auction but submits a bid in advance that is the top price he/she will pay for a given item. Absentee bidders can leave a bid by using the form on our website, over the phone or online through the platform Easy Live Auctions.
Auctioneer’s fee or buyer’s premium: These are the fees that you pay on top of the hammer price when buying in an auction. These can vary across different auction houses. For your own reference, here at Lynes & Lynes, ours are 20%.
Bid: The KEYWORD. It is the offer of a price that a prospective buyer (you!) will pay to buy a lot at an auction.
Bidder number: As at other online events each person who registers at an auction gets a number assigned to them. This number corresponds to your details for payment. It also helps to offer privacy as your bidder number is called out instead of your name if you are the successful purchaser.
Buyer gets the option: Often during an auction, if there are a few similar/almost identical lots being sold one after the other, the auctioneer will announce beforehand that he/she will give the buyer the option. This means that if you are the buyer of the first lot at €100 then you will be given the option to buy the subsequent lots at the same price. If you do not wish to buy the other lots, the auctioneer will auction them off as normal.
Condition report: When you cannot view an item in person then you can request a condition report that will detail any significant damage or important information about the item.
Estimate: Each lot is given a low and high estimate by the auctioneer that represents the approximate price at which the lot might sell during the auction. You can find this easily on the auction catalogue under the photograph of each lot. As a potential buyer, it gives you an important idea of the value of that item based on the auctioneer’s opinion. How are they determined? The estimate is based on the condition of the item and current market values.
Final bill: How much am I going to pay? It is made up of the hammer price plus auctioneer’s fee + VAT. It is important to highlight that the VAT is just on the fee and not on the hammer price.
Hammer price: This is the price that the item sells for when the auctioneer brings down his hammer.
Lot: All items up for auction are called "lots". It refers to an individual item or group of items that are up for sale at auction as a single unit. Lots are normally denoted by a “lot” number.
Online Auction: An auction that is conducted on an online platform instead of a live audience in a physical location.
You are all set! You should now have all the auction terminology you need to attend your first auction. Enjoy!