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Auction 101

Never bought at an auction? That’s OK! We welcome first time auction goers at Floyd Street Stock Exchange. If you are planning on attending, arrive at 5:30pm the night of the auction for a quick overview of how to bid and buy at a live auction. Click here for info on the upcoming auction. 


An auctioneer’s job is to communicate what is being sold and the bidding price. It can be a little tricky to understand their chant, but once you pick up on some key terms, it is simple to bid!

Here are some common auction terms:

Absolute auction: Absolute auctions mean that every item will be sold to the highest bidder, with no reserve price. Floyd Street Stock Exchange auctions are absolute.

Bidder’s Choice: A method of auction where the successful bidder has the right to choose the item or items they wish to purchase at the bid price per piece, meaning they do not have to purchase all items, but only the ones they choose. Generally the merchandise is grouped in similar items. The items left not chosen by the winning bidder will be offered to the general bidders at the same price, on a first come, first serve basis. Any merchandise left may be re-auctioned later in the auction.

Buyer’s Premium:  A percentage of the high bid added to the bid price to determine total amount paid for a particular item. If an auction contains a buyer’s premium, it must be advertised as such. Floyd Street Stock Exchange charges a 10% buyer’s premium, as well as applicable sales tax.

One Money: If the auctioneer had said Lot #72 is going for ‘one money’ and you bid $30, you would be purchasing the whole lot (all of the chairs) for only $30 (plus buyers premium and sales tax, as applicable). Listen to the auctioneer carefully. If you do not understand, stop them and have any questions resolved then and there. Please, do not wait and bring your misunderstanding to the cashier. At this point, it is too late.

Times the Money: The price you bid will be ‘times the number of items’ in the lot. Example: Lot #72 has 10 chairs and the auctioneer says this lot is ‘times the money. If you bid $6.00, you are bidding $6 per chair. You would pay $6 X 10 = $60.00 (plus buyers premium and sales tax, as applicable).