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Five Essential Tips for Buying & Selling at Auction

It’s common knowledge that buying a property via auction is often the best way to grab yourself a bargain, but did you know that buying a property via an online auction is even easier?

In South Africa buying property via online auction has become a popular trend for many tech-savvy homebuyers.

One of the companies leading the way in online auctions is BidX1 – Founded by Stephen McCarthy, the platform refers to itself as a ‘digital property marketplace’ and offers online auctions in a myriad of markets including Spain, Cyprus, South Africa, the UK and Ireland.

BidX1’s South African operation is run by MC du Toit, who champions the platforms’ “very convenient, effective and transparent process”; the CEO has shared with Residential People, his top 5 tips for buyers and sellers looking to take part in a BidX1 auction.

5 Tips for Sellers

  1. Listen to the market, says du Toit. BidX1 offers the seller analytics on their property, which will allow him/her to see exactly what the feedback is from interested buyers. As there are limited buyers, particularly in the current market, ensure you take this into account when considering an offer.
  2. I always advise sellers to try to distance themselves from the emotional aspect of selling their properties. This is easier with commercial property, but in selling residential property i.e. your home, it is probably even more important. Once you have achieved a sense of impartiality and tried to view your home with objective eyes, ask yourself what you would pay for the property.
  3. When you receive an offer, do not reject it outright. First, sit with one of our property professionals and look at the offer carefully. Ask the question – why did I get this offer? So often I have seen sellers rejecting good offers, to only sell the property three to six months later for less.
  4. Don’t be blinded by the prices of other properties on the market in your area, or even what your neighbour’s property is being marketed at as it is most probably not what they will sell for.
  5. It’s a good idea to first view the bidding and sale of other properties on-line on our website to get a feel for the process, as it occurs in real-time.

5 Tips for Buyers

  1. Ensure you have done your homework and researched the market and viewed all available information on the property before bidding.
  2. Talk to one of our specialist property professionals who can advise you on any questions you may have.
  3. When bidding, do not exceed what you can afford, so before you start bidding ensure you have decided on your limit and then stick to it.
  4. Don’t make the mistake of thinking that a property will receive bids way over what you are prepared to pay. I have seen numerous buyers lose out on a property when they made their own assumptions that a seller will not accept their offer, or that other buyers will bid more than they are prepared to pay – resulting in their missing an opportunity to acquire the desired property which may even be their dream home.
  5. Some buyers say post-auction, ‘but I would have bid on that property!’, and my question to them is – why didn’t you? So ensure you are registered to bid as you never know…

BidX1 South Africa’s next on-line auction takes place on 26 February, to take part or to learn more, visit

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