Buying & Selling 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 find out sale dates

  • Visit our Auction Calendar to see forthcoming sale dates
  • Purchase our forthcoming catalogue at the saleroom for £7 in person, or £8.50 by post
  • Take advantage of an annual catalogue subscription for just £90
  • Register via our website homepage to receive monthly emails to be notified when the sale is available online

What is a condition report?

  • A condition report is simply asking an expert for their opinion on the condition, age and authenticity of the item. Many objects have restoration that is hard to detect, which will affect the objects value
  • You can get it by email so you have it in writing
  • It is a free service, and helps you decide how much you really love the lot

How to request condition reports & additional images

Viewing the auction

  • We are open for viewing prior to the auction – for viewing times please see the sale catalogue
  • Viewing staff are available to assist in locating items at the saleroom and answer your questions

How to place bids

  • 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.
  • Leaving a commission bid - This is your maximum bid which 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 enquiries@bellmans.co.uk (Sussex Saleroom) and info@bellmans.co.uk (Winchester Saleroom), or by contacting a representative in the office by telephone.
  • Bidding live via the internet - We offer live bidding via the www.the-saleroom.com. This facility enables you to bid from the comfort of your own home. To register, visit www.the-saleroom.com prior to the start of the auction. An additional 3% plus VAT will be charged to use this facility.
  • By telephone - We offer the facility to bid over the telephone for lots with a low estimate of £300 or more. Telephone lines must be arranged with a Bellmans representative at least two hours prior to the start of the auction and are allocated on a first come first served basis. There is no extra charge for this service.

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 that you have been successful

Paying for purchased lots

  • Buyers 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 www.the-saleroom.com are subject to 25% buyers premium plus VAT at 20%.
  • Payment can be made immediately after the sale of the item. We accept cash, credit card (with a surcharge), debit card and direct wire transfer.
  • Payment and collection of all purchased lots must be made within one week of the sale; thereafter storage charges will 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 the company Auction House Shipping for the packing and postage of all smaller items.They can be contacted on T: 0044 1403 892 674 E: enquiries@auctionhouseshipping.co.uk
  • If you are not collecting items in person, please do contact Bellmans to let us know who you are nominating to collect the item in your place

Terms and conditions

Selling at Auction

Nothing beats the excitement as the battle for your lot intensifies on the auction floor. At Bellmans we guide you through the entire selling process; from valuation, collection and auctioning to receiving your cheque for the sale.

How to get a valuation on your item?

  • We offer free valuations at our Wisborough Green, West Sussex Saleroom on Tuesdays and Thursdays 9.30am - 4.30pm, and at our Winchester Saleroom on Thursdays 10am - 1pm. Unfortunately we are unable to provide valuations during sale week
  • No appointments are necessary
  • Proof of name and address is required when selling at auction
  • By appointment, a specialist can visit your property to value larger collections of items
  • You can request an initial valuation by email. All you will need to provide is a high resolution image of your item, a description (including measurements, information about any signatures, etc), and your contact details

What is the sellers commission rate?

  • 15% of the hammer price plus VAT, and a £5 plus VAT lotting fee on each sold item
  • There are no fees if an item is unsold

How do I get the items to Bellmans?

  • We can help arrange collection of your items. The fee for this service can either be charged directly from the collection company, or deducted from your sale proceeds
  • Please contact a Bellmans representative if you wish to deliver your items to us, to arrange a mutually convenient time

Do I receive a catalogue?

  • If you are selling items in the auction we will happily send a catalogue to the registered address on request, but this is not an automated service.

How do I find out sale results?

  • All results will be available on our website at the end of each sale day
  • Please do not hesitate to contact a Bellmans representative to discuss sale results

How soon will I be paid?

  • The settlement statements and cheques will be sent out within three weeks of the last day of the auction.
  • Direct transfer payments can be organised if the accounts department is informed at least two weeks prior to the auction by email or post. 

How to proceed if items remain unsold

  • The seller will be notified of any unsold items within 14 days of the sale. The seller can then either re-offer the lot(s) with a lower reserve in a future auction, or collect the lot(s). If the seller wishes to collect rather than re-enter, the lot(s) must be picked up within 28 days
  • If a Bellmans representative has not received instructions within 28 days, the lot(s) will be automatically re-offered into a future auction at our discretion.

Terms and conditions