Tips for buying and selling at auctions
BEFORE you bid on that incredibly rare silver mustard pot, there are a few things you need to know.
Make sure you have inspected any items of interest before you place a bid, says Gina Lugosi, an auctioneer and valuer from Lugosi Auctioneers.
“And ask for a condition report, you’ll want to know about any issues before, rather than after,” she says.
Predicting the price an item will sell for can be difficult and largely depends on the competition on the day, says Lugosi. “As a general rule, if you double the lower estimate price, this usually wins the lot.”
Make sure you have planned how you are going to transport the item should you win it and when you are required to collect it by, as auction houses can charge for holding the item.
“Finally, make sure you really love the item, as there are no returns after sale,” Lugosi says.
If you feel you may have an item of value at home, Lugosi Auctioneers offers free auction appraisals over email or you can live your own Antiques Roadshow experience and bring the item into Lugosi’s Balgowlah auction gallery.
Some of the more unusual items Lugosi has seen include gold teeth from a deceased doberman, a foot skeleton from an extinct giant moa bird and 16th century papal documents.
“We’ve achieved some great prices for our clients, including $3000 for a small 1930s pottery dish, $24,000 for a pair of Chinese porcelain flowerpots and $35,000 for an 18th century bronze Buddha, all from local clients who were completely unaware of their value,” Lugosi says.
And remember, auctions are not just for original artworks and Nan’s figurine collection. Items such as retro toys and Barbie dolls, old computers, early edition books and musical instruments can be highly sought-after items. More information at lugosiauctions.com.au
An antique can make a great investment but there’s more to winning an auction than meets the eye.