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Are others noticing Auction Houses bidding up items?
Poll ended at Thu Mar 24, 2016 11:35 pm
Yes 100%  100%  [ 1 ]
No 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
don't care 0%  0%  [ 0 ]
Total votes : 1
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 10, 2016 11:35 pm 
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Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2015 11:05 pm
Posts: 2
I've been using AuctionZip for a few months now, the vast majority of Auction House seem to be very legit; however, I noticed one that seems to be a scam. It started when I logged into AuctionZip I was viewing several different auctions. I click on another and my curser was on the bid bar when the page opened and it took it as a bid. Did not even touch the curser and it ended up as high bid. I called AuctionZip and they gave me the number to the Auction House. They refused to let me out of the bid, which wasn't made. Luckily it was only a few hundred dollar item, not a few thousand, so I paid it and they gave me a future credit. I was fine with that. I collect coins and silver, so I thought I could just bid on those items to use the credit. When I called the company, I also found out that they don't even have live auctions they told me that they just do online auctions.

So when I go and bid, they the auction house bids on their own items, it comes up "floor" bid. They just told me the day before they don't hold live auctions. I watched their auctions for several days and it is a clear pattern that they bid up the items until they get more than the item is worth instead of just passing the item. They place bids on every item.

I read the fine print and they state they can bid up items as a reserve. At the same time some of their auctions state start at $1 no reserve. My advice is to watch the floor bids on various auctions before you get overcharged.

I ended up purchasing 2 coins to use the credit. Had to pay over twice what they are worth, at least I know never to click on that Auction House again. BBB had them rated C- 28 complaints, for the same thing I had happen to me and for provided over inflated appraisals.

Be sure to check out most Auctions before you bid, by far most of the Auction Houses on Auction Zip are great to deal with. I wish there was a way to kick the scam auction house off the site before others get associated with them.

I love online auctions but I am very concerned with this happening. I don't like to be scammed and don't like to see others get scammed.

Are others noticing Auction Houses bidding up items?


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 11, 2016 10:19 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 2:00 pm
Posts: 257
Location: Owosso, Mi
There are a lot of online auctions that are not truly run by auctioneers. Online Auctions, any one can do it, set it up in there basement and to top it off, there is no regulation or licensing involved. I would recommend before bidding on any online auction, is to check the auction facility out first and make sure they have been around for a while.


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 19, 2016 1:05 pm 
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Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2007 7:15 pm
Posts: 11
Educate yourself on who and what you are doing business with. If you are uncomfortable with the way they are doing business then go to another auction and check them out. If enough people don't use questionable practicing venues they will soon go out of business.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2016 9:02 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 2:00 pm
Posts: 257
Location: Owosso, Mi
Read the fine print in their TERMS, some auction houses allow the consignor to bid up their own items, this is pretty common practice and I personally feel it is unethical.


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 26, 2016 4:46 pm 
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Joined: Sun Sep 16, 2007 5:54 am
Posts: 272
Location: New York state
Brad, You said yourself that in the fine print, there is verbiage stating that the auction house has the option of setting reserves on items. Depending on what their consignors demand, certainly they may set them on all of the listings.

A reserve auction is one in which a base price is established, and the item will not sell until that amount is met. It is not "running up" anything. (Even eBay allows this - the screen keeps saying "Reserve not met" until it is.) I don't know the mechanics and the only way it may be possible to use reserves is to count them as "Floor" bids.

That said, using a reserve is a great way to kill bidder interest and starting out with a very low opening bid amount is truly annoying. If a reserve is used the opening bid amount should be reasonably close.

If I am not mistaken, the UCC prohibits consignors from bidding on their own items. Instead of that, a reserve should be used. If the auction is reluctant to do reserves, then a consignor is left with the choice of hoping for the best result, finding an auction that will work with reserves, or not selling.

On the other hand it is perfectly legal for auction staff to bid. It's supposed to be made clear in the terms (and preferably announcements) that this could happen, though.

If the auction terms are printed, written clearly and available, and you don't like the way the auction is run adhering to those terms, find another auction.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 27, 2016 9:51 am 
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Joined: Mon Jul 06, 2009 2:00 pm
Posts: 257
Location: Owosso, Mi
J. Silverman, you stated it perfectly.

Bob


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 27, 2016 10:10 pm 
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Joined: Wed Dec 30, 2015 11:05 pm
Posts: 2
Just trying to make people aware that several Auction house advertise for example "$1 START AUCTION! DAY 3 OF 4! " but there is absolutely nothing that will go for $1, they bid everything up. They should post that $1 start but every item has a reserve. The majority of people don't read 10 pages of fine print to find the one sentence about reserves or them bidding their own items up. There is no way to get a great deal from Auction houses that perform this practice. If you look up auction houses on the BBB you will find some auction houses pray on the un-informed. Also some Auction Houses offer so called 3rd party appraisals that are at least 10 times the actual worth of the item. Appraisals need to be at least close to what the item is actually worth or someone might be intentionally defrauding unsuspecting consumers. There are several posts about Appraisals on this forum that everyone should read before they bid. I would also like to see items posted as passed when the reserve is not met like several auction houses do on auctionzip rather than to see a sold posted for unrealistic prices. This is misleading to most people.

I bought one ruby ring platinum plated silver the appraisal with it stated it was worth $4900 to $5200. I took it by a local jeweler friend of mine and laughed when he looked at the quality. He said he would sell me a much better quality ring for $250.00. Luckily I didn't pay anywhere near the $4900. The difference between $250 and $4900 is way off. If you don't think that is way off I have some ocean front property to sell you in Tennessee.

There are a lot of great auction houses on auctionzip, I purchase several things a day from them and am very happy doing business with them. They are very reputable I just wish all the auction houses on auctionzip operated that way. Buyer be ware.
Thanks Brad


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PostPosted: Thu Jul 07, 2016 2:01 pm 
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Joined: Mon Nov 09, 2015 3:48 am
Posts: 1
Oh yes, I have studied some auctions and the same mystery "floor" bidder opens every lot. Several times I was the only bidder on a lot, except for the floor bidder, who stopped every time at the same dollar amount. Fortunately, I caught on pretty quickly, and reversed the role. I bid up to their stopping point and left them hang.

On a different note, beware of Fountain City Auctions, I won a lot of coins, paid the next day, and never received the coins. I emailed them at least 25 times since I won back on June 3, some guy named Steve wrote me back saying they emailed me back several times. Claimed my email address was not working. But I get maybe 50 a day, plus I gave them another address to write to, never received anything from them. A real thief here. I gave up trying to get the coins.


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 02, 2016 12:36 pm 
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Joined: Sun Sep 16, 2007 5:56 am
Posts: 34
Location: Chesterfield, NJ
J Silverman wrote:
Brad, You said yourself that in the fine print, there is verbiage stating that the auction house has the option of setting reserves on items. Depending on what their consignors demand, certainly they may set them on all of the listings.

A reserve auction is one in which a base price is established, and the item will not sell until that amount is met. It is not "running up" anything. (Even eBay allows this - the screen keeps saying "Reserve not met" until it is.) I don't know the mechanics and the only way it may be possible to use reserves is to count them as "Floor" bids.

That said, using a reserve is a great way to kill bidder interest and starting out with a very low opening bid amount is truly annoying. If a reserve is used the opening bid amount should be reasonably close.

If I am not mistaken, the UCC prohibits consignors from bidding on their own items. Instead of that, a reserve should be used. If the auction is reluctant to do reserves, then a consignor is left with the choice of hoping for the best result, finding an auction that will work with reserves, or not selling.

On the other hand it is perfectly legal for auction staff to bid. It's supposed to be made clear in the terms (and preferably announcements) that this could happen, though.

If the auction terms are printed, written clearly and available, and you don't like the way the auction is run adhering to those terms, find another auction.


The UCC is clear that sellers my bid on their goods if the auction house discloses this in its terms. Unfortunately that most always never happens in live auctions...


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