3 Generations of Auctioneers

High Country Auction

How Auctions Work

A guide to help

How to bid at an Auction Sale:The First thing you need to do when wanting to bid at the auction is show your drivers license or picture ID to the registration desk and obtain a bidder card with your bidding number on it. Read the back of the card for the sale that you agree to when signing up for a bidder’s number. Preview the sale early, even the day before if possible.  To be the successful highest bidder is easy. To get a bargain you need to have a plan in place well before the day of the sale. Talking to bidders from across North America is the most consistent advice we have been given is to research the value of any expensive item before you leave home, this can be done by calling your local dealer, reading ads in the paper, or doing a search on a internet site such as EBAY. This should give you a price range for the piece of merchandise you are planning on purchasing. Most of us have been to an auction where we’ve seen a buyer pay more for a 2-3 year old item than it would cost new. The best way to prevent this is by setting a value on an item before you leave home and then adjusting it when you have inspected if for condition of the sale.  

For some people attending an auction sale for the first time can be very intimidating experience. People milling around evaluating potential purchases or just looking to see what their neighbor had accumulated. When the bid calling chant begins, are you the type of bidder that has your strategy completely planned out or are you the person that others refer to as someone who gets carried away with the moment when bidding begins.   Once you have a target price for that item, how do you achieve your goal? A lot of people have told us that before the they start bidding, they watch the auctioneers in action to see his technique and how he works, the all have different styles of selling.  Watch to seed how he starts the bidding, is it initially high and dropped until he gets a bid, or low to get the sale started and to gain momentum.  Many auctioneers have a policy that if no one will open the bidding they will place the first bid to speed things up.  Everyone has a different bidding style. Do you start the bidding and continue fast and aggressively to show determination and to deter competition or wait until near the end and then jump in to dishearten any remaining bidders.  I’ve seen buyers wait until the very end and win with their only bid, and other open the bid and purchase the item.  Do you bid slowly to give your opponent time to think about how much he is paying or enter the ring quickly and decisively at the end with a couple of fast bids. Auctioneers certainly appreciate the bidders who step forward and quickly get things moving.

Next where do you stand? Many people sit in front of the merchandise in good view of the auctioneers and other bidders to show enthusiasm and to discourage neighbors from bidding against them. Or do you stay in the crowd out of view and bid through a ring person to stay anonymous until the end, so no one knows who is buying.  Who do you watch while bidding, the auctioneers to make sure he doesn’t miss your bid or you can watch your opponent to psyche him out. Most people seem to use a combination of the se strategies depending on what suits them and how much they want a particular item but everybody agrees one strategy, if the price is too high don’t bid at all! The other thing that we learned talking to people about auctions was that part of their attraction is that they enjoy the challenge of competing for that elusive bargain and the entertainment of watching the day’s auction. The fear of scratching your nose and busying a pink elephant really won’t happen. In fact if you raise your hand and the auctioneer does not see you, holler out and let him know you want to bid!