How to come out on top at an auction

So, you’ve discovered that the house you’ve got your heart set on is going to auction. Don’t panic, there’s no need to stress. A property auction is all about chance and strategy, so if you focus on preparing for what is within your control, the more likely you are to seal the deal. Here are some top techniques to get you ready for success.

Get your house in order.

Make sure you have finance. It sounds like a no-brainer, but people do get carried away in the heat of the moment. And sometimes that results in a mad dash for finance that can lead to sleepless nights. Don’t let that be you. You have been warned!

Confidence is key.

Confidence is essential when you’re at an auction, so it’s important to arrive with a winning mindset. Do whatever you can beforehand to feel strong and confident. Be aware that your competitors may be scanning the room – watching your body language and facial expressions for clues. If you think your face may give you away, stand away from your fellow bidders. And when you do bid, make sure you stand firm and tall and speak loudly and clearly.

Set your limit and stick to it.

Make sure you’ve decided on your upper limit before you head to the auction. If you know beforehand what your top price is going to be, you’re less likely to let emotion get in the way of your decision making.

Take it slow.

If you reach a stage in the auction where you want to slow the bidding down, you can try to drop the bid increments. An auctioneer might be moving at a certain pace – say $10,000 increments – but he may accept a lesser amount if you offer it.

Keep calm and carry on.

Choose carefully who goes with you to the auction. If your partner is overly anxious, consider going it alone or invite a family member. Likewise, if you have friends who have bid at auctions before, ask them to come along. Whatever you do, make sure you go with someone who will keep you calm and grounded and will support you if you have to walk away.

Get serious.

If bidding slows down to small increments and you’re not close to your upper limit, consider making a significant bid to show you’re serious. It’s at this point in the auction process that you’ll discover who your main competitors are – or if there are any. Your agent may let you know what it will take to close the sale, or you can follow the auction through to its natural conclusion. But whatever you do, don’t end up in a situation where you’re bidding against yourself.

Going, going gone.

Buying a home at auction can be both exciting and a little stressful. But if you do the preparation, and follow a clear strategy, you could be moving into the home of your dreams in no time. Good luck!


Image by Media Drive of auctioneer Phil Parker.