Registering to buy at an auction is very simple. You can pre-register for the auction(s) you would like to attend. We highly recommend registering ahead of time. It makes the say of the auction go smoothly because you will not have to wait as long as if you were signing up from scratch. You will be able to come, check in, and get your buyer number. At that point, you are ready to go.
How to register to buy at an auction
If you choose to register the day of the auction, no worries. Just give yourself a little extra time to go through the registration process. It should only take you a few minutes once it is your turn to get checked in.
Either registration method you choose, make sure to bring a picture id with you for verification.
Financial preparation for the auction
Before you attend an auction, you need to set a budget for yourself and have your finances in order. If you are participating in a real estate or land auction, you will need to receive a pre-approval letter from your lender up to your qualified amount. This tells both you and the auction company that you are able to purchase the property at the price you bid, provided you did not exceed your approval amount.
Most real estate and land auctions require a deposit on the date of the auction. This amount will be a percentage of the total of your winning bid plus any fees, etc. You may bring a cashiers check with you the day of the auction. Check with the auction company beforehand to find out what other payment options they may have for your deposit if you do not want to bring a cashiers check.
What to bring to the auction
For most auctions, you only need to bring your identification and the money you intend on spending at the auction. For real estate and land auctions, you will also be required to bring paperwork from your bank as well as the deposit amount for your winning bid.
Bring a vehicle large enough to take your winnings home in. Most of our auctions require you to remove your winnings from the grounds the day of the auction.
If you are buying equipment, a truck and trailer will be necessary. If you are buying furniture, take a truck. Don’t forget about the weather. Have plenty of tarps and rope to cover up things that you don’t want getting wet on the drive home.
If you are attending an outdoor auction, make sure to bring sunscreen, a hat, sunglasses, etc. It is a good idea to have an umbrella with you just in case. You may want to keep a pen and pad handy to make notes as well.
How to bid
We have all seen the comedy sketches and heard stories of someone scratching their nose and purchasing a million dollar Van Gogh. While numerous, these types of things do not happen in a professionally held auction. Our auction staff is seasoned and can tell the difference between an itchy nose and a legitimate bid.
Don’t be shy when you want to bid. If you are provided a paddle to bid with, use it. You can give it a subtle wave or hold it high above your head. I recommend you make it as obvious as possible that you are bidding. That way there is no question between you and the auctioneer. You may even want to shout out the number the auctioneer is calling for as you put your hand up.
Some people like to be discreet when they bid, and there is nothing wrong with that. Just make sure that you are clearly visible to the auctioneer or one of the staff in the crowd helping him call in bids. They will start to keep an eye on you and you can develop a rapport with them.
At most auctions we will accept cash, checks, and credit cards. There are some stipulations to the different payment methods and every auction is different. Please reach out to us before the day of the auction to ensure you bring the correct type of payment. Here are a few general rules.
Cash is king.
There is a 3% transaction fee for all credit card transactions.
Cashiers checks are accepted for the exact amount required.
Personal checks are accepted under very limited circumstances, please inquire ahead of time. There is no negotiating at the cashier’s desk.
Taxes and fees
Most auctions will have a buyers premium associated with them. Our buyers premium is generally 10%, but does vary periodically. After that, Uncle Sam gets his cut, so taxes are added to the winning bid in order to get the final payment amount.
An item whose winning bid is $100 breaks down like this:
Winning Bid – $100
Buyers Premium is $10 (100 x 1.10)
Making the sold price – $110
Sales tax (KY) – 6% is $6.60
Total payment required – $116.60
We take great care to provide our buyers with cover (usually tents) and seating for most auctions. Food and drinks are also made available from local vendors for some auctions. There are times where the length of the auction or the surrounding area will not allow for food and shelter to be available, but we do everything we can to make your experience pleasurable.
And of course, portable restrooms will be made available whenever possible.
With all that said, if you are attending an outdoor auction, make sure to bring sunscreen, a hat, sunglasses, etc. It is a good idea to have an umbrella with you just in case. You may want to keep a pen and pad handy to make notes as well.