Terminology

 Absentee Bid - The bid submitted by an absentee bidder; the absentee bidder's top price to be entered in the bidding by the auctioneer or the auctioneer's designate during the sale.

 

Absentee Bidder - A person (or entity) who submits, in advance, a written or oral bid that is the top price he or she will pay for a given property, but who does not attend the sale.

 

As Is - Most items sold at auction are sold 'as is' in that the buyers are responsible for examining and judging the property for their own protection and the auctioneer does not offer warranties.

 

Auction - The method of sale of personal or real property.

 

Auction Block - The podium or raised platform where the auctioneer stands while conducting an auction.

 

Auction Marketer - An individual who utilizes the auction method of marketing property. In the case of real property, he or she may not actually 'cry' the sale but be directly responsible for all aspects of marketing the property.

 

Auctioneer - The agent of the seller who, for a fee, conducts the auction, recognizing the bidders and acknowledging the highest bidder, who becomes the buyer. In many states and communities, auctioneers must be licensed and bonded.

 

Bid - A prospective buyer's indication or offer of a price he or she will pay to purchase property at auction.

 

Bid Assistants - Employees of the auctioneer who are usually positioned through the crowd of bidders on the auction floor to help the auctioneer spot bidders and to help bidders make their bids.

 

Bidding Limit - The top price the bidder sets in his or her won mind that he or she will be willing to pay for a given property.

 

Bidding Number - The number issued to each person who registers at an auction. When that bidder buys, the auctioneer's staff notes the bidding number and the price.

 

Bidding Paddle - A paddle-shaped device with a number printed on it that is the bidding number assigned to the potential bidder when he or she registered for the auction. The participant bids by raising the paddle.

 

Buyer's Premium - A percentage added to the purchase price ('hammer price') to create the contract price.

 

CAI - The professional designation awarded to practicing auctioneers who meet the experiential, educational, and ethical standards set by the National Auctioneers Association Education Institute.

 

Commission - The fee charged to the seller by the auctioneer for providing services; usually a percentage of the selling price of the property established by contract (the listing agreement) prior to the auction.

 

Conditions of Sale - The legal terms that govern the conduct of sale, including acceptable methods of payment, terms, buyer's premiums, etc. Usually included in published advertisements or announced by the auctioneer prior to the start of the auction.

 

Deposit - The sum of money required of the bidder for the privilege of bidding at the auction. Used to discourage casual or unqualified bidders.

 

Estate Sale - The sale of property left by a person at his or her death.

 

Exhibition - The showing of property prior to its presentation at auction; arranged by the auctioneer and/or owner to allow prospective bidders to inspect and evaluate the property.

 

Hammer Price - The price established by the last bidder and acknowledged by the auctioneer before dropping the hammer. Also known as the 'gavel price.'

 

Inspection - See Exhibition.

 

Listing Agreement - The contract establishing the auctioneer as agent for the property owner with the specific responsibility of selling, at auction, the property specified. Includes the fee to be paid by the seller to the auctioneer and all obligations of both parties.

 

No-Sale Fee - A charge paid by the owner of property offered at 'auction with reserve' when the property does not sell. Not all auction marketing firms utilize this fee.

 

Opening Bid - The first bid offered from the floor at an auction; not necessarily the same as the amount suggested by the auctioneer when the auction starts.

 

Oral Bid - Any bid made on the auction floor, whether it is spoken or signaled.

 

Paddle - See Bidding Paddle.

 

Project Manager - An auction marketer responsible for all aspects of the marketing and production of the auction event. He or she may or may not actually 'cry' the auction.

 

Property Information Package - The package of information and instructions pertaining to the property to be sold at an auction event obtained by prospective bidders at an auction.

 

Reserve - The confidential minimum price that a seller is willing to accept for a property sold at auction.

 

 

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