Selling at auction

In the current economic climate, getting the auction process right is absolutely vital for successful vendors as well as for those vendors who are considering auctions for the first time. With the market more cautious and with plenty of stock from which to chose, those vehicles that have “ticked all the boxes” are finding buyers. Conversely, those that don’t, find it harder to sell. Manheim Auctions has developed some basic ground rules for vendors to use to improve the chances of a successful sales programme:

Stock: be aware of the condition of all of your vehicles before they go under the hammer and price vehicles with this in mind.

SMART Repairs: Remove those minor body and trim imperfections and, in so doing, you are removing buyer excuses for keeping their hands in their pockets.

Valeting: The importance of well-prepared vehicles is accentuated in a tough market. All buyers want to see clean vehicles – make sure yours shine like new pins!

Documentation: Vendor reputations amongst trade buyers can be significantly enhanced by the administrative support for stock on sale. Vehicles missing V5s,

MoTs or service records lack the provenance that buyers insist on.

Reserves: Although reserves need to be set realistically, you don’t have to under-price your vehicles. Simply ensure that fair market bids can buy them.

Representation: Your physical presence on the rostrum emphasises to buyers that you’re serious about selling stock and prepared to work with buyers to achieve fair market value. Be there at the sale to gauge the market demand and help the auctioneer get the cars sold.

Unsold Stock: If a vehicle doesn’t sell first time round, seek advice to find out why. Is the price too high or is the vehicle condition distracting buyers’ Adjust the reserve or arrange minor repairs if necessary.

Sale Profile: Make sure that your stock is part of a well promoted sales programme, along with other vehicles of a similar type and source.

Market Intelligence: Make informed decisions about your stock, by keeping in touch with the market through reading the many regular reports produced – it’s very difficult to buck the trend!

Ask for Advice: If you’re not sure, ask the experts. It’s in their interest to give you sound advice to assist you in making the most of your sales programme.

Mike Pilkington, managing director, Manheim Auctions and Remarketing said: “As part of our continual improvement initiative, it’s sometimes necessary to remind ourselves of the basics, in order to help remedy potential weaknesses in a particular vendor’s sales programme. Although the market is tough it’s easy to lose sight of the fact that tens of thousands of vehicles are being bought and sold every week throughout our auction network. Vehicles that attract buyers are those that have met most, if not all of these basic ground rules.”

Tel: +44 (0)1865 343100

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