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  • Sarah Booras

The Difference Between an Auction House and an Online Auction by an Estate Sale Co. Auction House vs Online Auction

Updated: Apr 15

Difference Between Auction House and An Online Estate Sale Auction

Auctioneer with Gavel
Traditional Auction House

You may be hearing a lot about Online Estate Sales and online auctions these days! The pandemic has had an effect on the estate sale industry in a profound way. The first half of 2020, while we were all stuck indoors, many estate sale shoppers turned to online auctions to purchase estate sale items online, and then pick the items up in the home with a quick in and out. We were one of the few companies doing online auctions at the time, and have watched this trend take off and is quickly getting more popular. Many people hear “Auctions” and immediately think of an auction house with people in the audience holding up their paddle when they want to bid on the sculpture that is on display. Those still exist! But an online estate sale auction is completely different and much more fun, easy, and relaxed.

Auction houses typically only deal with items of high value. The items to be auctioned off are physically brought to the auction house location and added to a catalog with other people’s items. Auction houses conduct Live auctions, typically a one day event, with a live auctioneer and live bidders. If there are 20 items being auctioned in one day, they might be from 20 different owners. Auction Houses do not liquidate an entire estate, only a few items from the home.

An online auction by an estate sale company is typically the contents of one entire home. It will have many everyday items in addition to nicer collections. From Cars and diamond rings to garden tools and kitchen items. The variety is endless and getting amazing deals is commonplace.

The auction has a starting day and ending day, typically 5-7 days. You register on the auction site the seller is using then start bidding!. You are bidding from home, and everyone is anonymous. Winners pick their items up in the home on designated pick-up days after the auction ends. The city and zip code are disclosed in the auction details beforehand so people can decide if it is too far to drive for in-home pick up. Some companies offer shipping on smaller items, so often the home’s location does not matter. If you are wondering where to look for these auctions in your area, a great resource is A great APP (and website) that shows sales in your area, simply use the "auction" filter. Auction House vs Online Auction

Woman at laptop very happy
I won!

If you like estate sales, bargains, online shopping, and a little exciting competition these auctions are for you!

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