Frequently Asked Questions
Common questions asked by our Calgary auction customers.
Table of contents
What are public auction sales?
An auction (or auction house) is the public sale or purchase of goods through a bidding system that is mutually agreed upon. The auctioneer begins at a lower price than the suggested retail/resale value and accepts bids from interested attendees or customers. The item is then sold to the highest bidder “as is.”
How does the auction work?
We hold a wide variety of public auction sales. From our live and online auctions every Saturday, which sell a wide variety of quality furniture, electronics, tools, household items and clothing, to our weekly car auction, which runs hundreds of vehicles through the auction ring. We also host light industrial and heavy equipment auctions throughout the year.
Signing up for our auctions is completely free. Bidding can be done both online and in person. You can pre-bid online before the auction or attend the live auction. Online bidding is open until the auction begins on the morning of our sale. Customers who only want to participate in our online auctions can pick up any items they win after the sale or the following week. The weekly car auction begins around 12:30 PM.
We’re confident you’ll enjoy the incredible deals and one-of-a-kind buying experience, but if you’re still unsure, we’d love to have you attend one of our upcoming auctions so that one of our staff members can assist you every step of the way.
Can I return or exchange my purchase?
We’re passionate about customer service and do our best to help as much as possible. If there was a mistake on our behalf making product declarations on a damaged or defective item, we would do everything we could to make the situation right.
Are all of your products authentic?
We’re proud to offer our customers fantastic deals on well-known brands, which is why all of our auction items are guaranteed 100% authentic. We do not sell “bootleg” or “reproduction” products.
Do my auction purchases come with a warranty?
Unfortunately, we do not offer warranties with our products. This is out of our control. However, we try to counteract this with a generous refund and exchange policy.
How long can a vehicle stay in your secure storage yard?
If you purchase a vehicle in the car auction, you must pay within two banking days and pick it up within two weeks. When you book your vehicle to sell in the auction, it can stay in our secure storage lot for as long as it takes to sell the vehicle, assuming you are willing to accept offers reflecting fair market value.
What if I buy a vehicle with a lien on it?
We run lien and title searches on all vehicles booked into the auction to ensure they are free and clear of all liens and encumbrances. Should there be a lien on any vehicle, we will use the purchase price to pay out the remainder of the lien. If the purchase price does not cover the amount owing, we will notify you immediately and refund the vehicle purchase.
What are absentee bids?
An absentee bid is a type of bid made by a customer who is unable to attend the auction in person. Absentee bids can be placed at our main office, or you can pre-bid on one of our online auctions through our website.
What do you call a person or group who runs auctions?
The group or individual conducting or hosting the auction sale is known as an auctioneer or auction company. They announce the rules as well as the lots or items that will be auctioned off. In addition, they call out or acknowledge bids and announce the winner. Auctioneers can be hired by a company to conduct various auctions.
What is an auction sale?
A private or public auction is a sale in which individuals buy or sell various goods or services. To indicate their intent to purchase, interested buyers make monetary bids in ascending increments. The transaction is completed when only one interested buyer remains in the bidding war. The auctioneer will announce that this person was the highest bidder, and the sale will be over.
What are the rules of an auction sale?
Goods and services are sold in lots. A wide range of assets, goods, and services can be offered during an auction sale. In some cases, certain items may be sold as a group but still be considered part of the same lot. Each individual lot has its own contract of sale. The sale of an individual lot during the auction is completed when the auctioneer announces the highest bidder/auction winner. This can be done in a number of ways, including directly from the auctioneer/auction staff following the auction or through the traditional action of falling the gavel. Prospective or interested buyers may bid until the auctioneer declares the sale closed. A seller may be barred from bidding if they have not notified the auction company/auctioneer of their intention to reserve the right to bid. As this rule is broken, the auctioneer will not accept such bids from the seller or the representative bidding on their behalf during any auction sale.
What is an auction lot?
A single or group of items offered for sale at auction is known as an auction lot. Each lot is assigned a number in the auction catalogue so that customers, auctioneers, and auction staff can easily locate and identify it.
What is a bid?
A bid is the method by which auction participants set and determine the price of the item being sold or auctioned off. Bids are accepted in ascending increments until a final price is determined. The auctioneer will determine the starting price and bid increments based on the bidder’s interest or activity. Being the highest bidder indicates that you are willing to pay more than the other competing buyers, and thus you win the auction item.
What do you call someone who bids at an auction?
A bidder is a buyer or customer who participates actively in the auction. You can participate as a bidder in a live auction or as a “virtual” or “online” bidder in an online auction.
How do I bid?
Bidding in an online auction – Register in the popup window that appears when you enter the online auction. Browse the auction site until you find something of interest. When you click the “Bid” button, you will be directed to a confirmation screen where you can either “Confirm” or “Cancel” your bid. You should be approved quickly if you have previously attended one of our Calgary auctions or are a resident. If you sign up to bid in one of our online auctions with an address outside of Alberta, we may contact you directly by phone or email to confirm some details before approving your bid. When you bid in one of our online auctions on a lot with multiple quantities, you are bidding on all quantities in that lot multiplied by the money
Bidding in a live Auction – You can easily bid in person at one of our public auctions by registering for a number at our main office. We recommend that new buyers familiarize themselves with the bidding process before placing a bid. The auctioneer will start each lot at the lowest possible price for each item and gradually increase in ascending increments as interested buyers raise their bid numbers to indicate the price they are willing to pay. This process is repeated until only one buyer remains, at which point the auctioneer announces the winning bid number and moves on to the next lot. Winning bids are entered into our computer system at the same time, so everything is ready when you are.
What are bid Increments?
A bid increment is the dollar amount that the auctioneer increases bidding based on buyer interest. This can be rounded up or down at any time at the auctioneer’s discretion. An example of bid increments might be starting or increasing the increment by $5 for items under $100, or $25 for items valued at $500. As the bid price increases in a bidding war, the increments would increase as well.
What are the conditions of sale?
All purchases are final and subject to our terms and conditions. Please carefully read these before registering for the auction or bidding. Signing up to bid at one of our auctions, whether online or in person, indicates that you fully understand and agree to these terms.
What is a consignor?
A consignor is an individual, group, or business that is the legal owner of an item and has contracted the auction or auctioneer to sell their personal property at auction on their behalf.
What is fair market value?
Fair market value is defined as the price at which an item or piece of property would sell on the open market. In such a case, a consignor may inquire, “What is the market value of my car in Canada?” A car auction is a great place to buy or sell because it is a competitive buying environment. We have a knowledgeable auction staff and resources such as the Canadian Black Book to assist in determining a reserve price or starting bid.
What is an auction gavel?
A gavel is a traditional mallet made of premium hardwood with a decorative handle. In both Canada and the United States, gavels are used in legislatures and courts of law. They are also used in ceremonies around the world to indicate the end of an auction sale.
What is internet bidding?
Bidders can enter one of our online auctions. An auction assistant monitors our computer and relays bid information to the auctioneer. For our vehicle and heavy equipment auctions, we offer live online bidding through our website, allowing customers who are unable to attend the auction to bid in real-time. This allows the auctioneer to accept online bids from those who also attend the auction.
What is a minimum opening bid?
The lowest viable price that the auctioneer will accept. This is generally based on the system of Fair Market Value.
What are passed, unsold, and conditional lots?
The item is passed when an auction lot does not meet its reserve price or the auctioneer does not receive any bids. Any surplus lots that are passed in one of our upcoming auctions are usually resold. If this happens again on a vehicle or consigned item, we will notify the owner/consignor. If we do not receive a response within two weeks, we will remove the item from our warehouse or sell it for storage. Under certain conditions, an auction sale may be completed, and the highest bidder recorded. However, the sale will be marked as a conditional sale. This indicates that the item has a reserve price, and before proceeding with the sale, the auction staff must confirm the offer price with the bank, consignor, or owner.
What is a reserve price?
The reserve price is the minimum accepted purchase amount agreed upon in confidence between the owner/consignor and the auction house. This means that no items or services will be sold for less than the reserve price. We accept reserves and make recommendations based on market value for our vehicle auction. There are no reserve prices for our furniture, electronics, miscellaneous, bank repo, and salvage auctions.
What is an auction ringman?
A ringman facilitates customer interaction with the auctioneer by bringing bids to the auctioneer’s attention. This is especially useful during a public auction, as the crowd can often lead to misunderstandings for those unfamiliar with the concept of auction sales.
What is a silent auction?
Silent auctions are not the same as regular auctions. Buyers and attendees will place their highest bids on a ballot or piece of paper that is often placed in front of each auction lot. The Silent Auction will end at the time specified by the auction coordinators, and the highest bidder on each sheet of paper will be declared the auction winner for that lot. Typically, silent auctions are used to raise funds for a charitable event, social cause, or non-profit organization. The silent aspect refers to the absence of an auctioneer actively selling goods or services. Instead, silent bidders participate on their own initiative. Fixed bid increments and a starting auction price are most commonly used in silent auctions.
What is the auction price?
The auction price is determined based on the last remaining person participating in the sale of a given lot during the auction. This means that the auction winner was willing to pay more for that given item than other interested buyers.
What is sniping in an auction?
During a timed online auction, auction sniping is the strategic practice and execution of placing a winning bid that is likely to exceed the current high bid (if the current auction price is hidden) as soon as possible. Auction snipers are a source of great annoyance for both online auction participants and auctioneers. Auction sniping typically occurs in the final few seconds of an online auction, leaving no time for other bidders to outbid the sniper.
What do auctioneers say so fast?
Auctioneers don’t just talk fast, the auctioneer’s craft is learned and practiced. They are actually following a conversational rhythmic pattern of numbers in ascending or descending order based on the auction attendees’ bidding interest. A good auctioneer will engage potential buyers, keep track of the auction count in real-time during the sale, and control their breathing simultaneously to maintain this pace for extended periods. If you want to see if you have what it takes to be an auctioneer, there are dozens of auction schools in Canada and the United States, or you can be trained in-house by an auctioneering company. Skilled auctioneers compete in events such as the World Livestock Auctioneer Championship.
How do I pick up my purchases?
So you’ve won your bids in person or via our online auction. What happens next? You will receive an email invoice with a list of your items, quantity, and purchase prices. We may also contact you over the phone. You can pay for your purchase in person or over the phone at our main office. If you have previously bid, we will automatically process your purchase (with your permission). The purchaser is then responsible for picking up their items in our warehouse between 9 PM and 5 PM Monday through Saturday.
We strongly advise you to collect your auction items as soon as possible. Your retail items, appliances, or furniture will be held in our warehouse for up to seven days after the auction. If you have not picked up your items within two weeks, we will make every effort to contact you before reselling them for storage.
When will I be charged for my purchases?
If you did not pay in person, we will begin processing payments at the end of the second banking day following the auction. We accept cash, certified cheques, bank drafts, money orders, visa, mastercard, debit, electronic wire transfers, and e-transfers.
Does the auction offer shipping?
We can accommodate most shipping requests if arrangements are made by phone or via firstname.lastname@example.org. You will be charged for the cost of shipping plus a small handling fee.
Can I bring in consignment items to sell at the auction?
We accept consignments for our weekly public auction, which takes place the week of the sale on Monday and Tuesday. You can sell your vehicle at the car auction until 10 AM on the day of the auction. We have a separate secure storage yard for consignments in our heavy equipment auction that allows us to accept consignment items at any time.
How do I see what’s available in the upcoming auctions?
You can search for, view, and bid on available items in our auction catalogue, which is updated throughout the week. We also update our product listings every week, highlighting the featured items for each of our auction sales.
What are open box and salvage items?
Our products may arrive with an open box in some cases. We test and inspect as many items as possible as our warehouse staff prepares for the auction. In the product description, we make every effort to be completely transparent about any damage or wear on an item.
Vehicle Auction Buyers Premium
Miscellaneous auction items are subject to a buyer’s premium, which is an additional 10% added to the highest bid. This determines your final purchase price. Winning bids in the car auction are subject to the buyer’s premium based on the following amounts:
Car Auction Sale Price
$0 – $975
$1000 – $1975
$2000 – $2975
$3000 – $3975
$4000 – $4975
$5000 and above
Online Buyers Fee