Buying at Auction

Buying at Auction

Bid by bid you can enjoy the true thrill of the chase with a Bellmans auction. Find out about our latest auction dates, preview the lots and let us help you to pursue your prized item either in the charged environment of an auction room, or from the comfort of your home or office. 

How to place bids

  • Bellmans live online biddingwith live auction feed which allows you to watch, listen and bid anywhere in the world with no additional surcharge, also hosted on (surcharge 5% +vat) 
  • Leaving a commission bid - This is the maximum bid you would like to place on an item. By no means is this the opening bid that we use.  A bid can be left either via your account on this website, by emailing Bellmans directly at (Sussex Saleroom), or by contacting a representative in the office by telephone. Please note, for Timed Online Auctions bids must be left online either via BellmansLive or the-saleroom.
  • Absentee Bidding - Clients may register and leave an absentee bid via Bellmans website.  If you do not have an online account, please click this link
    All new Buyers will need to email a form of photographic ID to
  • By telephone - Bellmans offer our clients the personal service to bid with a member of our staff by telephone for lots with a lower estimate of £300 or above. Please note there are limited lines available for this, so please book this service in good time and no later than 4pm. the day before the auction. 
  • Attending the sale - If you are attending a Bellmans sale and wish to register to bid you are required to complete a paddle registration card and to produce one form of photographic identification. 

How to find our Auction dates

  • Visit our Auction Calendar to see forthcoming dates
  • Register via our website homepage to receive monthly notifications of auctions becoming available online. 

What is a condition report?

  • Prospective bidders can request condition reports on our website.  Just register and click the link on the lot description page.  Some condition reports are pre-published and on the lot pages, with additional images.

  • A condition report is simply asking one of our specialists for their opinion on the condition, age and authenticity of an item. Many objects have restoration that is hard to detect, which will affect the object's value

  • You receive it by email 

  • It is a free service, and helps with deciding if you want to purchase the lot

How to request condition reports & additional images

  • Email us with your request at (Sussex Saleroom) 
  • If you need a specialist to contact you via telephone, this can also be requested

Viewing the auction

  • We are open for viewing prior to the auction –Please book an appointment using the Booking Appointments Online Tab
  • Viewing staff are available to assist in locating items in the saleroom and answer any questions

How do I find out if my bid has been successful?

  • All results will be available on our website at the end of each sale day
  • If your bid has been successful an invoice will be sent via email or post on the last day of the auction
  • You can also call the office if you would like to check whether you have been successful

Paying for purchased lots

  • Buyer's premium of 22% on the hammer price plus VAT at 20% is payable on all lots. (The VAT rate may alter and will be levied at the appropriate rate.) Lots purchased via are subject to 27% buyers premium plus VAT at 20%.
  • Payment can be made immediately after the sale. If you are not collecting in person, we require full payment by bank transfer.
  • Payment and collection of all purchased lots must be made within one week of the sale; thereafter storage charges apply. 

How to collect purchases

  • We require payment and collection of lots within one week of the auction
  • Upon receiving payment for your lots, the items can be collected from the saleroom
  • We recommend using Clearhouse Moves for deliveries of larger items such as furniture. They can be contacted on 07919 363760
  • We recommend using ATD Shipping (01903 742233, ) for collecting purchases from Sussex.
  • We recommend JenTel Packing (Specialists in Fine Arts, Antiques, Valuables, Collectables and Fragile items, approved LAPADA service provider) For Collection, Bespoke packing and Shipping needs, UK and International please contact the team or call 01268 776777
  • If you are not collecting items in person, please contact Bellmans to let us know whom you are nominating to collect the item in your place

Terms and conditions