You’re right. When starting a new business it’s important to prioritise where your capital is going, and splurging on top of the range office furniture and equipment only adds to your overheads.
Auctions are a great place to pick up deals, so there are 12 basic guidelines to successfully taking part in an auction:
- Check the auctioneer’s track record, including whether they’re accredited with the South African Institute of Auctioneers (SAIA)
- Understand there’s always extras like VAT and auctioneer’s commission, so factor this into your budget
- Avoid buyer’s remorse by falling in love with something that is impractical or over-priced. Inspect it carefully, walk away and take some time to think rationally
- Get a sense of what the item is worth before attending an auction so you don’t get swept away by auction fever
- Auctions are about confidence and bluffing, so make sure you have the finances to a) afford to bid or b) finance it. This will be projected in your attitude in bidding
- Short list the lots you’re interested in. Be specific instead of going on an auction shopping spree
- Go to auctions before you intend on bidding so that you get a better understanding of the auction process. When you’re more certain about the process you’ll project more confidence in your bids
- Remember Ts & Cs apply. Read the auction catalogue carefully and listen to the auctioneers preamble before bidding starts. In many cases, bids are voets toets.
- Obvious, but make sure you’re bidding for the right lot. If you win, you’re legally obligated to pay for it. Notify the auctioneer immediately in the case of a mistaken lot.
- Make sure you understand registration requirements. Some auctions require a refundable deposit.
- Get to know the terminology and process auctioneers use. Liquidations, bankruptcies and receiverships have no reserve prices. If there are no other bidders you might score big with your first bid.