Is an auction like shopping in a store?

Do not mistake auctions for retail sales. The two have very little in common. Auctions are different from retail because auctions are governed by federal laws, state laws, Uniform Commercial Codes and city ordinances. When you bid at an auction you actually enter a legal contract.

How do I know who I am bidding against?

Be careful when you bid on lots. Know how much you are bidding and whether you are bidding against your spouse, parent, sibling or friend.You cannot retract bids. Auctioneers expect you to take full responsibility for your bids.

If I win a bid, when does that item become my responsibility?

The moment the auctioneer says "sold", or the item is awarded online, the ownership of the item being auctioned has changed hands.

Is it necessary to inspect what I want to bid on?

Know what you are bidding on by closely inspecting each item before the auction. This is why an auction preview is offered. Use your own evaluation as your bidding guide, not the auctioneer's description or other bidders' comments. You are buying the merchandise "AS IS WHERE IS, WITH NO IMPLIED WARRANTY" with no guarantees of any kind from the seller or auctioneer. The risk of the item not being what you wanted should be factored into your bidding amount.

Do the auctioneers have to move so fast?

A fast-moving auction benefits both buyers and sellers. Auctioneers have the right to reject any bid amount that would slow the bidding. Auctioneers cannot wait for slow bidders, so know in advance what to buy and how much to spend.

Will the auctioneer always see me bidding?

Don't be shy about bidding loud and large. Raise your bid card in the air if you want an item and keep it up until you are done bidding. Make certain the auctioneer is aware you are bidding because the auctioneer may be taking bids from someone in front as well as online or behind you. Once the auctioneer says "sold," the item is gone even if you are willing to continue bidding. There are no do-overs in the auction business. Spotters or ring men are there to help the auctioneer spot bids and will signal your bid to the auctioneer.

How does the auction company know if I won a bid?

During the auction, clerks record the description of your items and your buyer number as well as the amount you paid for the item.

What happens if there is a tie bid?

The auctioneer, both online and onsite, will attempt to break the bid. If the bid is not broken, the auctioneer, at its discretion can back out the last bid, in order to look for the tie breaker, or choose which bidder to award it to. If you want to win the lot, ensure to break the ties.