Motor Auctions – Bagging a Bargain

Buying a car at a motor auction can be a great way to find a bargain, but you should make sure that you do your homework first. Before you visit a motor auction with the intention of buying, you should go along to a live auction to learn about the way the bidding system works and to understand how an auction functions. While you may well leave with the car that you want, you need to be aware that you will be competing against other buyers. You might want to line up a number of potentials, just in case your first choice gets snapped up by somebody else.

Picking the right auction to go to and the right time to visit are important elements to make sure that you get the best deal. A quick online search will help you to identify the various motor auctions on offer in your area. Take a look around a few websites for local auction houses and you may even find that they offer you the opportunity to look at the cars that they have due for sale in their next live auction.

You might want to search for a general auction or a specialist sale if you are looking for a specific type of vehicle. In terms of timing, try to avoid school holidays and weekends, as they will be packed full of private buyers also looking for a great bargain. Evening auctions can also be busy, so if possible try to attend a daytime auction during the week.

Another important thing that you should do before attending a motor auction is to have a good think about what car you want to buy. Think about the size of car that you’re looking for, including the engine size, and try to narrow your choice down before you attend the motor auction. Once you get there, you may be overwhelmed by the choice – having a clear idea in your mind is the best way to avoid temptation and stay focused. You don’t want to end up bringing home a car that isn’t really fit purpose.

You also need to decide how much money you want to spend and how much you think that the car you’re interested in is really worth. Auctions are a fast paced and exciting environment, so it’s important that you don’t let yourself get carried away or you could end up driving home in a car that isn’t worth what you paid for it.

Turn up to the motor auction with plenty of time to have a good look around. Although you won’t be able to test drive a car, by having a good look around you’ll get an idea of how the car has been treated. Check over the bodywork for damage and also have a look at the condition of the interior. If the body work panels don’t line up properly, there’s a fair chance that the car has been involved in an accident – in which case it’s probably a good idea to steer clear.

Perhaps one of the most important things to understand is that you have no recourse if there’s an issue with the car once you have purchased. Most motor auctions will give you an hour after the sale is completed to raise any cause for concern. If you believe that any details on the entry form or in the catalogue are incorrect, you may have room for complaint – but it’s a time sensitive matter, so give the car a proper check before you drive away.

Remember that if you’re buying a vehicle at auction, you will be competing against dealers with plenty of experience in the vehicle remarketing industry. As long as you approach the motor auction process in the same way that seasoned auction buyers do, your first motor auction experience should go well.

How to Buy Antiquarian Books at Live Online Auctions

Bidding on antiquarian books at live online auctions is sometimes a bit difficult. That’s because unlike many other objects that you might want to bid on, you are relying on the seller’s description rather than actually seeing the books for yourself. So how can you tell for certain that what you are getting is the real thing and not a clever (or not so clever) fake? Well, just as with a traditional auction, there are a number of techniques that you can use and they all involve being a careful observer. Here’s what you need to know in order to make an informed decision about purchasing such books online.

Look at the Auctioneer’s Reputation

While it’s always important to check on any auction you are working with to make sure that they are reliable and that they don’t have reports of complaints against them with the Better Business Bureau, here we are talking about something else. Antiquarian books are a fairly unique thing to be involved in the selling of. While you will often find 19th and early 20th century books for sale from generalized auction houses, older antiquarian books can be quite rare and are not likely to be offered by your friendly auctioneer who was last week offering up wax figurines of angels from some sweet old lady’s house.

Now, we’re not saying it can’t happen. Maybe the sweet old lady happened to have a family Bible that was handed down for the past 300 years. However, typically when something like this is offered for sale, it’s sold by a specialized auction house that knows the market and knows what these things are worth. This is to the benefit of both the seller and the purchaser since you don’t want to get ripped off by a fake and the seller doesn’t want to get stuck selling for much less than an object is worth. Therefore, it’s worthwhile to check the reputation of the auction house holding live online auctions to make sure that they deal in such objects regularly.

Look for Telltale Details

While it’s always harder to find details when looking at photos as opposed to the actual object, most people selling antiquarian books understand that condition is everything and they will take lots and lots of pictures. If the book is a 19th century volume, look for the inevitable yellowing and damage to the spine that will have occurred. It was during the 19th century that acid paper, which is cheaper to make, started to take off, and is known to not last long. That’s why books from the 17th century can appear almost brand new (acid free paper) while books from a little over 100 years ago look like they’re falling apart.

Learn About Markings

In addition to these, it pays to educate yourself about marks that should appear in various books. For example, if you were looking at Jewish books from Eastern Europe from the 19th century, they would likely have a mark from the Czar’s censor saying that the book was approved. Without the mark, the book may have been published underground. However, more than likely you should look for other live online auctions selling similar objects since it’s probably a fake.

Why Selling Watches at Auctions Could Leave You Shortchanged

For some time now, the auction houses have been open for another lucrative season selling rare and exclusive luxury items. The world’s internet news feeds have been awash with watches selling for hundreds of thousands of American dollars, with some even topping the magical million.

It is easy for the man on the street to imagine from this that the best place to sell a watch is in an auction – and from numerous too-good-to-be-true-but-it-is stories, that the best place to find one such watch is at a boot fair, in your loft, or left behind by a hurricane.

However, while occasionally people do find real gems in these locations, discovering or rediscovering lost treasures and family heirlooms, or, every now and then, just getting lucky, these watches are valuable because they are highly limited. The chances of owning one and not knowing about it are slim to none at best.

For most people, selling a watch at auction would be a disaster. It’s commonly intimated on auction reality shows such as Cash in the Attic or Bargain Hunt that selling small valuables for a few hundred or a thousand or two is perfectly viable, but this doesn’t take into account the costs involved, or whether an auction is the right place to buy or sell.

For starters, there’s the listing fee. If you want an auction house to sell your stuff, you have to pay them to do it. Then there’s the Vendor’s Commission. This is the commission, based on the selling price, that the Auction house takes for selling the item (let’s say, a watch) and it can vary from a nice, low, 8%, to a startlingly high 20% of the total sale price. Then you pay VAT on that commission. As you can see, auctioning something that only sells for a few hundred pounds in the first place can seriously eat away at the money you receive. If it’s any comfort, the buyer of your item will also pay a commission fee on top of the bidding price. So the auction house actually gets two sets of commission for every sale. Actually, not much of a comfort, is it.

Then there is the issue of what the watch will actually sell for. If it goes in a general auction, the chances are it won’t be what it’s worth. This is because the success of the auction largely depends upon the people bidding. If you don’t have more than one person in the room who both knows the value of your watch, and, more importantly, really wants it, then no one will bid to buy it. Too many items fail at auction because there are no interested parties in the room.

So despite the temptation that arises from watching daytime television, an auction is not a wise place to sell a watch unless it is a truly exceptional piece. People often go to auctions to pick up a bargain; trying to sell a watch for a respectable price is a chancy business at best.