FAQs About Property Auctions

Thinking of participating in a real estate auction, but unsure of the process? We have gathered some of the most frequently asked questions about property auctions along with answers and additional information.

Home AuctionIs it possible to get a good deal on a home at a real estate auction?

Yes, it definitely is possible to get a good deal at an auction. We recommend doing your homework and learning as much as you can about the property before the auction date. You can contact the auctioneer’s office to request the terms of the sale, as well as inquire about scheduled times for inspections and open houses to view the property.

Will background details on the property be available?

It is a popular misconception that background information on auction properties remain a secret. This is not the case. Disclosures, site reports, land surveys, and zoning information are usually made available to interested buyers to help inform their decision of whether or not to bid.

Are auctions just for foreclosure properties?

No. While foreclosure properties are sold at auction, there are many other kinds of properties sold as well. Auctions are used to sell single family homes, upscale luxury homes, residential and commercial land, lakefront homes, commercial real estate, and more.

How will an auction benefit me as a buyer?

One main benefit of buying at real estate auctions is the opportunity to buy a property at a fair market value after reviewing comprehensive information about the property. An auction also expedites the entire home buying process, eliminating lengthy negotiation periods with a seller and back and forth counter-offers. It also reduces the overall time it takes to purchase a property.

What is earnest money?

Earnest money is the amount you are required to pay the day you are declared the winning bidder at an auction. It is paid by cashier’s check. You must pay the earnest money before you leave the auction.

Can I inspect a property before bidding on it at the auction?

In some cases, yes. Some homes are sold “as is” and no visits are allowed. For other properties, there are set dates for visits and inspections.


Have more questions? Call the friendly staff at O’Reilly Auctions. We’re happy to talk to you about the property auction process. Call today!