I admit I have been a little slow in updating my News and Views, but it has been very busy!
Thanks to all who attended our May 19 Victoria Day Weekend auction.
I admit it is tough to get people to attend an indoor auction when you have record breakin,g beautiful sunny weather on a long weekend…but we did manage to do it!
Not a huge crowd…a little larger than last year’s Victoria Day weekend auction…119 registered bidders. As most of you know, we have been packing the hall on a regular basis since last October with record crowds, so for those of you attending this past auction, it probably was a little more comfortable with a smaller crowd!
Prices as always were up and down. Highlights included the wonderful bird box automaton for $1700….a great pine secretary also sold for $1700…and one of the best pieces of Coke advertising I have had in a long time sold for $625.
Of course there were lots of good buys on the other end of the scale, and every auction has its highs and lows. That is something we learn to live with.
As an auctioneer you want those attending the auction to go home with some good deals, and you hope they are happy with the purchases.
Of course, as an auctioneer I also think of my consignors and hope they end up with a reasonable price for the items they consign.
So how do you balance the both? Have happy buyers and sellers? It would seem at odds with each other, but it can be done.
Usually when I look at the items people wish to consign, I give them an approximate selling price. I am conservative with the average selling price I quote, because I want the consignor to be realistic about the value of their items. I stress that the selling price could be higher, but I also stress that it could be lower. I point out we do not place a minimum selling price on the items and the consignor has to be prepared to take a risk. If people do not like my assessment, then I suggest other ways they could possibly sell their items. If they cannot sell them on their own, then the auction is still a possibility. However, most people simply want to sell, or they have to settle an estate, and they usually go through our auctions.
The key to selling at an auction, is to average out the selling prices. There is an old saying “what you lose on the apples, you make up for on the oranges”. Case in point. One recent consignor in the last auction had three pieces of furniture. I told her I thought two pieces would sell for $150 each and the third piece I wasn’t even sure if we would get much money at all for. So we agreed $300 and change would be a decent selling price. The first piece sold for $100 and that was very disappointing. However, the second piece sold much to my surprise for $300 and the third piece I wasn’t even sure about, sold for $70! So the consignor ended up with $470, when we were only expecting about $300. The buyers I hope were happy with their purchases, so everyone ending up winning.
As an auctioneer sometimes I remember the items that seemed to sell for very little money and don’t realize how well some of the other items did, until I tally up the consignors sales.
Another consignor, recently seemed disappointed at the auction with some of the selling prices, but when I ran into him a week later, he told me he was shocked at his total sales….double what he thought he did!
Of course there are some consignors who get lucky and every piece does very well, and unfortunately other consignors who get low prices on every item, but usually for most people it averages out to their satisfaction.
So obviously, if you are buying or selling, auctions can be fun and exciting!
TO VIEW A VIDEO SLIDE PRESENTATION OF THIS AUCTION PLEASE CLICK HERE