How to Confidently Bid at a Heavy Equipment Auction – Equify, LLC | Equipment Financing, Equipment Auctions, Commercial Insurance
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How to Confidently Bid (and win) at a Heavy Equipment Auction

Williams, Grant. “5 Tips of Bidding at a Construction Equipment Auction.” Contractors Hotline, July 2017.

Bidding at a construction equipment auction is usually done with a simple gesture – a nod, or wave of the hand or catalog. When an auctioneer sees a person nodding or waving to a friend, their gesture could be interpreted as a bid. Personal expressions like those can result in mistakes, especially at public auction sales. Before you head out to the auction, consider some of the following things about the bidding process:

How to Bid at the Used Construction Equipment Auction


Keeping eye contact with the auctioneer will establish your identity with them. It is important that wherever a person is standing, whether in the front or far in the back, to catch the attention of the auctioneer so when the time comes to actually place your bid on a particular item, the auctioneer is aware of you and your desire to bid, and that the auctioneer is able to easily acknowledge your bid.


Once the event begins, and identity has been established with the bidder and the auctioneer or ringman (ringmen help the auctioneer accept bids from people the auctioneer cannot see), it is important to maintain that connection. This way communication can continue by using a hand gesture or the raising of a bidding catalog; the auctioneer will return to bidders who have engaged with him, as bids increase. All that needs to be done is use that same gesture to place your bids.


It is not always known when to enter a bid because placing an offer too late or too early can narrow the chances of winning. The best time to make an initial offer is about midway through used heavy construction equipment auction which allows adequate time to follow the process while deciding whether to quit or continue to pursue an item. In a situation where you have any doubt about purchasing a unit, it is best not to participate from the beginning, especially if a large number of participants are interested in that same item.


Often participants feel pressure to continue bidding when an auctioneer keeps coming back to them and yet have reached a maximum budget. The best way to handle this is with a negative head shake and signal to the auctioneer of no longer wanting to participate and dropping out of bidding on that particular item. When you reach your maximum bid-stop bidding.


In almost every case, a quick decision must be made in this unique type of sales venue. Bidding moves at a very rapid pace and spontaneous decisions must be made. Knowing ahead of time the degree of interest in a particular item as well as the budget for such a purchase will tend to make a spontaneous bidding decision much more accurate. It is certain that the auctioneer is not going to stop the bidding process for an individual participant to make up their mind.

Considering these tips about the auction bidding process can help you have a fun and productive day at the auction. Keys to remember – BE PREPARED AND BE SHARP!

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