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Auction FAQ's

What is a real estate auction?

Real estate auctions are used to accelerate the process of buying and selling real estate. With intense marketing focus on a specific property, potential buyers are forced to make a decision through competitive bidding.  The technical process is similar to a conventional real estate transaction, only without contingencies on financing, property inspections, and other issues that can derail a real estate transaction.

How do I register to bid?

FOR ONLINE AUCTIONS - Simply visit and select the Registration button on our toolbar. After you read our terms and conditions you   may select "I agree" and will be directed to a secure page asking for personal information. When all required information is entered, you may click "create registration" and a new account page with password protection will be created. At this time you may bid on properties and log in/out of your new account at your convenience.

FOR LIVE AUCTIONS  - Simply bring your proof of identification and certified funds in the form of cash or cashier's check made payable to yourself and present these items to our registration staff. We will offer you a bid card, brochure, and sample contract so that you are prepared to bid during the auction.

Do I need to have money to bid?

FOR ONLINE AUCTIONS - No, we currently do not charge a fee to register at However, If you fail to perform as the accepted high bidder, commit a fraudulent action, or neglect to abide by our "Terms & Conditions for Online Auctions", you will be responsible for auction commissions plus any collection and/or attorney fees.

You must have certified funds in the form of cash or cashier check made payable to yourself to receive a bidder card one of our live auctions. You will keep the money during the bidding process. If you are the successful bidder, your cash or cashier check will be promptly receipted with the seller chosen escrow/title agency.

Can I view the property prior to or during the Auction?

YES! All auctions are AS/IS WHERE-IS and not contingent on condition. Therefore, we highly recommend that buyers complete a thorough inspection and due diligence on the property before they bid. Realtors are available to open the property and assist with the value and conditions. You should not bid on a property that you have not seen.

What is a Buyer's Premium?

The buyer's premium is an auction fee paid for by the buyer. It is calculated by adding the stated buyer's premium percentage to the final accepted high bid amount. For example, if you are the successful bidder at $50,000 and the stated buyer's premium is 10%, then you must add 10% of $50,000 or $5,000 to arrive at your total contract price of $55,000.

What is an Earnest Money Deposit?

Earnest money is a required deposit that the successful high bidder must submit with the auction sales contract to be held with the seller chosen escrow/title agent through closing. The earnest money is not-refundable, and is applied as a portion of the total contract price. Earnest money is collected in the form of cash or cashier check only. The amount of earnest money may vary with property size and value.

What Happens if I am the High Bidder?

FOR ONLINE AUCTIONS - You will be notified within hours upon completing the auction to verify your winning bid and given next step instructions throughout the closing day. You must be prepared to submit all purchase documents including a signed copy of the "Real Estate Auction Sales Contract" and earnest money deposit in the form of business or cashier check within 24 hours from the close of the auction. You must be prepared to close within 30 days from the date of contract execution.

FOR LIVE AUCTIONS - As the successful bidder of a live auction, you will immediately be required to complete all purchase documents including the "Real Estate Auction Sales Contract" and the stated auction earnest money deposit in the form of cash or cashier check. You must be prepared to close within 30 days from the date of contract execution.

What if I change my mind? Can I cancel my bid before closing?

NO! You may not change your mind. Please be certain that you understand all terms and conditions and perform all due diligence and inspections on the property. You will lose your earnest money, legal remedies may be sought, and you will be banned from all Coleman & Patterson auctions.

Is there anti-sniping protection?

Yes. The online auction will automatically extend if a bid is placed in the final 5 minutes.

Can I use a Realtor? How much does it cost?

Yes. Coleman & Patterson strongly encourages the representation of a licensed real estate agent. If you are buying, there is no cost to have buyer representation. If you are selling, the cost is determined by your realtor listing agreement.

Does my Realtor receive a commission?

Yes. Co-operating brokers are paid a commission of 2% of the final high bid amount so long as they are present with you during the auction and agree to assist you in understanding the terms & conditions, auction sales contracts, and closings.

Do I get a Clear Title?

Yes. All property is sold with marketable title free and clear of any liens, judgments, encumbrances, or back taxes. If seller cannot deliver such title, the buyer will be refunded their earnest money.

Who is responsible for the closing costs?

The owner's title insurance policy will be paid for by the seller. The seller is also responsible for all back taxes, encumbrances, and liens on the property, including ad valorem taxes and condo fees. Seller will typically pay the fees for preparation of the deed, costs relating to tax certificates, 1/2 of escrow fees, and overnight courier fees on behalf of the Seller.

Buyers are responsible for standard and customary charges for the county in which the property is located, which typically includes recording costs of the deed, overnight courier fees on behalf of the Buyer, 1/2 of escrow fees, the cost of the survey, if any, the cost of the Mortgagee's Policy of Title Insurance and all additional fees related to any loan obtained by Buyer.

What does Absolute Auction Mean?

Absolute auctions will be sold on the day of the auction regardless of price. If a property is not sold absolute, it will be sold subject to sellers' confirmation or in other words "With Reserve".

How are the opening bid & increments determined?

FOR ONLINE AUCTIONS - The minimum opening bid is determined by the auction company. We select an amount that makes sense for each particular property and that most buyers will be comfortable bidding to start the auction. Increments are determined by the current bid amount and will adjusted to larger increments as the current bid price increases.

FOR LIVE AUCTIONS - Bidders will be solicited for an opening bid and bidding will go up from there. The auctioneer decides on live auction increments at their sole discretion.

Can I obtain Financing for the property?

YES. You may obtain financing for the purchase of property, however the auctions agreement is a cash sale agreement and not contingent upon you obtaining financing. If you cannot close on the property for any reason, you will lose your earnest money deposit.

When & Where are closings held?

Closings are scheduled approximately 30 days from the date of contract execution. Closings will be held at the title company chosen by the seller.

Can I bid on behalf of someone?

Only real estate agents and those with an original power of attorney may bid on behalf of their client. As the agent or legal representative bidding on behalf of another party, you will be individually bound if client does not abide by the terms and conditions. Do not bid unless you understand and abide by the auction terms and conditions.