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The rise of property auctions – five common auction misconceptions revealed

If our auction roundups are anything to go by, it is no surprise that selling a property via auction continues to rise in popularity, with benefits including lower fall-through rates and quicker sales.

My Auction, the online property auction house, reports an impressive £480 million raised in May 2022 alone. This is an increase of 24% when compared to May 2021’s total amount raised.

Despite this significant uptake, there are still many common misconceptions people have when it comes to buying and selling via auction.


Below, My Auction sets the record straight with their top five auction myth busters.

Properties sell for less at auction

Perhaps one of the biggest misconceptions is that a property sold via auction goes for less than one sold via a private treaty sale. More often it is the opposite, with many properties selling for more at auction than they would have done if sold privately.

Thanks to the transparency of the sale and the ability to see where the bidding is at in real-time, the competitive nature of an auction often drives the sale price up.

Property auctions are for problem properties that can’t sell in the normal way

Many people are under the impression that property auctions are only for properties that come with problems or need major renovation works. This outdated misconception is far from the truth with many stunning homes being listed that are in perfect condition and ready to move straight into. And it’s not just properties being sold at auction, land that is suitable for development is sold too.

Property auctions are only for those who are desperate to sell

Many owners choose to sell via auction to reap the benefits including certainty of sale, faster turnaround times and transparency. Auction sales exchange contract the moment the gavel falls, completing within four weeks, compared to 18 weeks through private treaty sales.

Another advantage of auctions is the ability to generate a sale well above asking price. In a similar vein to auctions for luxury goods such as art, jewellery and cars, property auctions can often generate the best results financially because the market decides what each property is worth to them, not the auctioneer or estate agent.

Property auctions are for cash buyers only

Many people are under the impression that unless they are a cash buyer, they are unable to purchase a property via auction. This is incorrect. If the property you are purchasing is mortgageable then buying via auction with a mortgage is possible, including for first-time buyers which is another misconception.

Property auctions are risky as you can’t view the property

Before a property goes to auction, there is a marketing period that will give interested parties the opportunity to view the property to determine whether it is something they would like to bid on. My Auction partners with local estate agents to provide potential bidders the opportunity to view the property and ask questions.

With auction purchases, you also have the added level of security that comes with the legal pack that is viewable before the auction. This means full transparency of what you are buying before you make a bid, a benefit you don’t get with private treaty sales.

Auctions are a viable way to buy and sell

Stuart Collar-Brown, co-founder and director of My Auction, comments: “Over the past 12 months, we have seen a significant rise in lots offered as well as potential buyers interested in auctions, with this rising each month.”

“Buying and selling at auction offers both parties much more security and certainty that a sale will go through, which is invaluable in the current market where stock is low and demand is high. Property auctions are a really viable way of buying and selling all types of property and land. Over the last few years, we have seen a noticeable shift of our buyer demographic.”

He adds: “Auctions aren’t just for investment buyers, we’re seeing an unprecedented interest from first-time buyers, second-time buyers, those looking for a forever home as well as those looking for something with development potential, who are all starting to the see the benefits of auction.”


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