Today I had the new experience of bidding on a property utilizing one of the online auction platforms; auction.com. When I tell you it was frustrating & stressful…..I really, really mean it.
Two days ago my client and I attempted to place his bid but both the site and the app were down. Across the board, the technology was just a big ol’ ball of malfunction.
Yesterday, I was able to at least register my client and place his opening bid. The auction was scheduled to end in 22 hours. (just so you know, should you ever decide to bid on auction.com, you must register with a credit card and have a $2,500 hold placed on the card.)
The next day, the website reported that the bidding would end at 4:18 pm. I checked the page again at 2:55pm and saw that the bidding was now scheduled to end at 3:18pm. I also saw that my buyer had been outbid.
He raised his bid immediately.
The next 47 1/2 minutes were a blur of higher bids, competing bids, extensions of the auction deadline, stress and downright confusion.
I am very familiar with the auctioning of real property in person. It typically goes very well. The internet auctions are a different animal! The online process is very quick-paced and nerve-wracking. I found it difficult to have the time to respectfully consider all of one’s options before moving on or dropping out.!
In the end, my customer was out bid. We watched the bidding skyrocket from $22,050 to $60,405. My client dropped out with only 1 minute of auction time left, recognizing that it just wasn’t worth it for him to continue. We are all pretty sure the property needs a new septic system as well as plenty of other upgrades and renovations, so the numbers didn’t jive for him. The bidding had gone up to a point that made it impossible for my buyer to accomplish his objective.
There was too much risk, so to speak, not enough profit. I felt a huge let-down when the bidding finally ended. I worried that my client would be upset that he hadn’t been successful but honestly, I was mostly relieved! I feel that it is hard enough to buy a house under normal conditions let alone bidding in real time against a very motivated buyer. The emotional toll is palpable. He commented, “I don’t like the way they do that.”
I gotta agree with that.