Winning at the auction!

Tips for coming to our auctions…

There are several things you should be on the lookout for and pay attention to at an auction, especially those of Midwest Auctions.  The following information will help you treasure hunters and deal seekers become better at spotting that hidden gem, picking up bargains and finding new items you thought were junk. 

First off, read the entire sale bills.  You will typically find our ads in the Good News (, on Face Book (search “Midwest Auctions” – like and share!) and in your email (send us your email address, to, for regular updates!).  Don’t just skim over them.  So, what do you want to look for?  Look for items listed with a brand name and model number and specialty items.  If I made the effort to include these, or single them out, they are important and often extremely valuable.  The specialty merchandise will have limited interest, but often carry a high value.  These items will generally have good resale opportunities. 

Next thing to do is to hit the website and check out all of the pictures.  Typically we take between 200 and 300 pictures of the items for sale.  This will give you an idea of the size, color and condition.  Now you have a great idea of what is for sale.

This brings you to the most important step.  Do some research!  Find out what the items for sale are worth.  We recently sold an Akai 77 cassette player.  So here is your chance to see how easy and rewarding research can be.  Pull up eBay, hit “Advanced Search”, select “Sold” and then enter “Akai 77” in the search field.  The buyer picked this up for $25.00.  Someone reading this will probably physically be sick because they missed it!

After you have done your homework and prepared to come to the sale, now what?  Come early!  Look things over very well.  Figure out what you want to buy, where they are located, what the order is that they will sell in and what you are willing to spend.  Once the auction starts, pay close attention to what is selling so you don’t miss anything.  The pace is fast and they don’t mess around much.  Be prepared to buy.

During the sale, listen closely to the auctioneer.  If you hear things like… “I hope you all did your homework”, “Anybody awake?”, “Anyone paying attention”, “It’s worth way more money” or “Are you going to let them steal it?”, there is probably a great deal on the auction block that’s going super cheap.  That’s your chance to jump and snag it.

Here are a few final tips. Don’t be afraid to holler and don’t be afraid to be seen.  It’s a public sale.  Everyone can see you.  Being subtle, sneaky or sly won’t really help you win an item.  It will possibly get you overlooked if your bidding action isn’t clear enough.  Missing a bidder’s offer is the last thing the auctioneer wants to do.  If you aren’t sure if you are in or not, ask!  It’s no big deal.  You’d rather be in than sorry, right?  Again, the auctioneer doesn’t want to miss anyone’s bid.  If you’re going to bid, do it big and be proud of it. Keep your eye out for things you will buy, even if you don’t need them now.  This could include oil, bug killer, envelopes, light bulbs, screws, nuts and bolts, and other common household items.  A gallon of premixed weed killer is often over $10 at the store.  Bug killer is even worse.  You can often pick up a whole box of these items for under $5.  Don’t be afraid to stock up.  Most of these common items don’t go bad.  Also keep in mind that you won’t pay any tax at auction here in Kansas.  Another great way to save on your purchases!

We hope that helps you on your future sales and gives some insight on how to be a great deal seeker.  Thanks for reading.  We look forward to seeing everyone at our upcoming sales!

We are currently looking at some sales in Parsons, Independence and Coffeyville for the upcoming 2018 season.  Check back for updates regularly!


  1. Nice piece.
    Have a happy and prosperous new year.

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