Real Estate Experts’ Winning Tips For Bidding At Auction

Posted by:
Caroline Soriano
May 22, 2023
8 minutes, 37 seconds

One of the most common ways to purchase real estate is through auctions. Make sure you're ready with a knowledge of how they operate and what you need to know before bidding to avoid the drama of the bidding contest. 

Various laws and norms apply to auctions, and they differ from state to state. If you intend to participate in an auction, this quick guide offers an overview of what to anticipate as well as advice on how to get ready. 

You must be well-prepared before bidding at an auction because the bidding process is public, and you must pay the deposit and sign the contract after your bid is chosen as the winning one. These are the things you might want to consider. 

Common Auction Terminology

Anyone planning to place a bid at an auction should be familiar with the associated lingo. Here are some of the main terms you should be familiar with, however, this is not a full list:

  • The term "reserve price" describes the price below which the auctioneer cannot conduct a sale without the owner's express consent. In other words, it acts as a small measure of protection for the vendor. The property is considered to be "on the market" after the reserve price is reached during an auction. After then, the seller of the property will take the highest and last offer. 
  • When a property is passed in and not sold to the highest bidder because it falls short of the seller's reserve price. The option to negotiate a deal with the seller will, however, be given first to the highest bidder. 
  • A vendor bid is a bid made by the owner or seller of the property, typically to start the auction or if it becomes stuck. We advise you to visit one of the relevant government pages listed below for more information because there are rules and limitations on vendor bids in various states and territories. 

How Does An Auction Buying Work?

Unless the bidder and seller agree on any additional stipulations before the auction begins, auctions do not often have a cooling-off period and are typically unconditional offers. If your bid is accepted, the deposit must be paid and the documents must be signed right away after the auction. You must enter an auction ready to finish the transaction should your bid be accepted. If you back out of the deal, you could be held responsible for any losses the seller incurs as a result and lose your deposit.

Researching the current auction regulations in the state or territory where you intend to purchase is always a smart idea. 

real estate agent talking to couple buying home

Understanding Pre-Approval For A Mortgage

Before you start looking for a home, it could be a good idea to have your mortgage pre-approval prepared. When a lender determines how much you can afford to borrow based on an evaluation of your finances and credit rating, this is known as a home loan pre-approval. With this knowledge, you may begin your search for homes within your price range without getting overexcited. 

It's crucial to understand that a pre-approval does not imply that your loan application will be approved in full. Keep your lender informed of your financial condition and any changes about the property you intend to bid on. 

Requirements For A Deposit

The deposit amount is specified in the contract of sale and is normally 10% of the property's sale price, though you may be able to agree with the vendor on a different amount before the auction begins. It's crucial to be aware that properties sold at auction do not have a cooling-off period, so if your offer was the highest, you will need to pay a deposit right away.

Settlement Date

The sale agreement specifies the seller's settlement date. Property settlement times range from 30 to 90 days on average, though they can differ. The deposit will be forfeited, and you might also be responsible for any losses incurred by the seller if you are unable to complete the transaction.

Tips For Bidding At Auction

Although there isn't a foolproof recipe for auction success, the following basic advice might be useful:

Conduct Research

Before the auction, you must have completed all of your pre-purchase investigations and research. Consider pest and building inspections, unit-specific strata reports, and performing your due diligence.

Recognize Your Obligations

Anyone looking to buy a property at an auction should seek advice on the legal requirements in their state or territory, the terminology involved, and the state of their finances due to the demands placed on the winning bidder at an auction, including providing the deposit and signing the contract and the lack of a cooling-off period.

Have Your Finances Under Control

You must have your money in order before signing up on the auction day since you will need to pay a deposit after the auction is over. This also entails having your deposit available.

Make A Firm Offer

Keep lines of communication open with the auctioneer and make sure they are aware of your desired bid amount and the increments you wish to boost it by.

Establish Your Boundaries

It's crucial to be aware of your upper financial boundaries when making split-second bidding decisions. Set an ideal price range and an upper limit so you'll know when to stop bidding.

What Are Online Auctions And How Do They Operate? 

eBay for real estate? Not quite, but granted that they adhere to social distancing rules, property auctions can still take place during lockdowns connected to COVID-19 thanks to the development of internet auctions.

This might enable prospective buyers to view the results and the bidding process of other comparable properties before making a real-world offer. 

How Can You Sign Up For A Web Auction?

If you plan to bid, you must create an account on the preferred platform in advance and successfully pass an ID verification, which typically calls for your driver's license. The agent you visited to examine the property will receive the information.

Our expert real estate experts can help if you're thinking about buying your first house at an auction but don't know where to begin. 

To learn more, contact us at RE/MAX Advanced Realty by dialing 317-316-8224 today!

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