Auction process

Photography by: Article by: 22 May, 2021

Our auctions work as follows:

  • a listing will be published for a upcoming auction period, usually 7 days, during which website visitors may view listing information relating to the lot and registered users may communicate with the seller;
  • at the end of the upcoming auction period, the auction period will begin; again, this is usually 7 days;
  • during the auction period, an “open ascending price auction” or “English auction” will be administered by our platform: the lot will have a starting price, and the starting price or current bid will be displayed on the auction page; registered users may place bids for the lot, providing that each bid must exceed the starting price / current bid;
  • by placing a bid, a user makes a legally-binding commitment to pay the bid price for the lot in the event that that is the winning bid;
  • in addition, by placing a bid the user commits to paying the buyer’s premium to us, either in the event that that is the winning bid or in the other circumstances described in these terms and conditions;
  • bidders must provide their credit or debit card details, and we will place a hold on that credit or debit card for an amount equal to the buyer’s premium;
  • once placed, bids cannot be withdrawn, suspended or qualified by the bidder; accordingly, you must not bid for a lot unless you have the necessary funds;
  • at the end of the auction period, the highest bid will win the auction, at which point a contract for the sale and purchase of the lot between the seller and the winning bidder will come into force, and the bidder will be liable to pay the winning bid price to the seller under that contract, and the buyer’s premium to us under these terms and conditions; in the event of any dispute regarding the identity of the winning bidder, we may determine this in our absolute discretion;
  • if there are no bidders during the auction period, or the highest bid does not meet the reserve price, then unless we have agreed otherwise with the seller the lot will be available for purchase at the reserve price during the purchase now period, again usually 7 days.

Sellers may not withdraw lots from an auction during the upcoming auction period or the auction period. If a seller acts or purports to act in breach of this paragraph, the seller must pay us liquidated damages equal to the buyer’s premium (calculated using the reserve price, or if there is no reserve price the minimum buyer’s premium).

We may reject or cancel any bid, withdraw any lot, cancel any auction at any time before its conclusion, and/or cancel any purchase now period, in each case in our sole discretion with or without notice or explanation. For the avoidance of doubt, if a lot is withdrawn or an auction is cancelled there will be no winning bid and no contract of sale between the seller and any bidder.

We also reserve the right to extend any auction period. For example, we may extend an auction period if the auction has been disrupted by technical issues.

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