The thud of a gavel simultaneous with the sound of “sold!” usually sends an adrenaline rush through anyone attending an auction.
Yes, you could say that one of the main benefits of selling your property at auction is the excitement, but offering your property for sale by this method actually has many advantages over a private treaty sale.
- Speed: Selling a property at auction is a swift process. In today’s stagnant market, this can be advantageous for many sellers who may be under time pressure to sell, potentially because they are moving abroad or because developers are seeking to sell a property they have renovated quickly and to avoid expensive voids. Once the gavel falls, a legal and binding contract is made, with completion usually within four weeks. So, from start to finish, an auction sale takes between six and eight weeks, a fraction of the time it can take to sell via private treaty.
- Certainty of sale: While all auctioneers aspire to 100% success, within moments of offering a property from the rostrum you will have certainty as to whether the property has been sold.
- Increased buyer interest: Once a property has been entered into an auction, it will be marketed extensively (catalogues, for-sale boards, ads and media coverage and email newsletters) by the auctioneers.
- Transparency: The auction room is an open forum and the sale process is entirely transparent. This provides the seller with the knowledge that the best possible price has been achieved for the property on the day. Setting a reserve price for your property will also ensure that it is not sold for any less than you would consider to be acceptable. In the ideal scenario, competitive bidding results in a price higher than the reserve being achieved, but if that is not the case, the property will not be sold for less than the vendor will accept.
- Best price: Effective marketing in the run-up to the sale attracts a wide range of bidders to the auction. The open sales forum on the day, and the atmosphere created in the auction room, can be very busy and result in fierce competition between bidders, ensuring that the best price is achieved for your property. At Strettons, we regularly see competitive bidding leading to properties selling for significantly above the guide price.
Philip Waterfield is a director at Strettons
Guide to auctions
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