What Is The Best Way To Bid At An Auction?

What Is The Best Way To Bid At An Auction?

Bidding at a Property Auction can without doubt be nerve-racking for beginner and professional buyers and even auctioneers. Their primary goal is to encourage buyers to bid and buy the property for the highest possible amount, after all, they are working on behalf of the sellers.

So, how will the Auctioneer know you are bidding?

Firstly, you need to ensure that you are clear in how you wish to make it known you are bidding, for example, raise your hand in the air but be sure to avoid subtle winks and twitches, as this could possibly give the auctioneer the impression you’re in on the bidding! Secondly, ensure that you are seen. If you can’t be seen, the auctioneer won’t see you bidding and you could miss you chance on that bargain property.


Make sure you work out your maximum budget before hand and your finances are already in place. Once you have worked out your maximum price, wait for the bidding to stop, as you could potentially be driving up the price. Wait for the auctioneer to say “going once… going twice…” and it’s at this point you can leap in with your maximum bid in confidence.

Auctioneers tricks to keep an eye out for:

This is something they have been doing for much longer than you. They are professionals and know all the tricks of the trade and they’ll be sure to employ them on you to get you bidding and bidding high:

  • Auctioneers reserve the right to be on behalf of other parties including, surprisingly, the seller (this is raised at the beginning of the Property Auction or in the General Conditions of Sale T&C’s). The auctioneer is well within their rights to do this up to one bid below the reserve price BUT you may find yourself bidding against the seller. If you suspect this, you can retire and then speak to the vendor after the auction once the property is unsold and the vendor may be willing to sell at a lower price.
  • Look out for the ‘Off the wall’ bid. This is where the auctioneer takes a bid from nobody or off the wall – frequently used when bidding for the seller below
  • The auctioneer will try to pit you against another bidder to encourage your competitive streak and so it becomes clear that it is your turn to either bid or drop out. This is very effective at getting you to your maximum and then when someone drops out he will bring another bidder into focus.