General Responsibilities of Auctioneers and Valuers
Undertake to apply their professional knowledge and skills to the best advantage of their seller.
Not do anything that will place their own interests in conflict with or ahead of those of their clients.
Be prepared to answer fully to their client for any course of action proposed and/or taken.
Maintain clients’ confidentiality at all times where possible.
Have appropriate Professional Indemnity cover in place at all times.
Clients should be kept informed, preferably in writing, of the principal steps being taken on their behalf.
Clients should be made aware of, and be agreeable to, commission rates and other all charges prior to the confirmation of instructions.
Make available and public all charges, premiums and costs payable by a buyer over and above the hammer price
Give reasonable assistance to buyers in the collection of purchases
Give appropriate access and information to assist a buyer to purchase
Auctioneers must make it clear in all cases whether or not a lot has sold, e.g. stating ‘sold’ ‘unsold’ etc.
Auctioneers are only entitled to bid on behalf of the vendor up to one bid below an agreed reserve.
In House Bidding
An auctioneer’s prime duty is to his / her client the vendor.
However the auction must also be fair to bidders.
An auctioneer should not enter bids on his / her own behalf from the rostrum.
Should an auctioneer wish to acquire an item included in a sale that he / she is conducting, a written bid should be submitted at least 24 hours in advance of the sale and such bid to be executed in good faith by another member of the firm without compromising the firm’s obligations to other clients.
Bids executed on this basis should be on the strict understanding that items so acquired would be for personal use only, and not for re-sale.
Auctioneers may regard it as prudent to obtain permission from their vendor prior to placing a bid on their own behalf. It is essential that auctioneers and their staff can openly demonstrate that they do not seek to profit from their acquisition of property in sales conducted by the member firm, other than in the execution of their task as agent for the vendor.