Types of Auction businesses:
As part of your plan you will need to make a few choices, specifically what type of auctioneer do you want to be? Do you want to just call bids and work for others? Many auctioneers make a good living doing just that. They are called contract auctioneers. Many of them sell, vehicles (mostly cars and trucks), livestock (mostly cattle, but also swine, horses, goats and exotic animals), and equipment, large construction equipment (often called yellow iron in the industry) farm equipment, trucking equipment, and smaller construction equipment (trucks, backhoes, skid steers, compressors, etc.). Contract auctioneers often spend a lot of time on the road or in the air. If you are building a business plan that included contract auctioneering then factor that in. You are going to have to budget for a new truck or other vehicle more often than an auctioneer who works in one specific area. You might have other expenses as well, such as buying health insurance, or hotel stays. Contract auctioneers are sometimes referred to as road warriors by other auctioneers. Contract auctioneers traditionally use the open outcry or bid calling method of auctioneering. However, even in this section of the market there is a movement to having at least some of the bids come from the Internet.
Auction House Auctioneers:
Many auctioneers run auction houses (sometimes called auction halls). This type of auctioneer might specialize in certain types of personal property (guns, coins, pottery, art, etc.). This can be a very good way to make a living but it also requires a constant stream of goods to “feed the beast”. Auction house auctioneers have a more stationary lifestyle than many contract auctioneers, but have to do drum up sellers, where contract auctioneers do not have that concern. Auction houses can sell using a variety of methods, many still only do open outcry auctions, some do on-line only auctions where all the bidding takes place on-line, and some do blended auctions where some of the bidding is on-line from the Internet while other bidding is from open outcry bid calling to live in-house bidders. A good way to get into the auction house world is by helping lot and setup or ringing.
Personal Property Auctioneers:
Not all personal property auctioneers own an auction hall. Many personal property auctioneers conduct their auctions on-site at the seller’s property, or rent a facility. Some use a tent on-site, and carry most everything outside and sell the items under the shade of the tent.
Many personal property auctioneers sell in person to live on site bidders. A lot of farm estates and farmer retirement sales happen this way. Increasingly personal property auctions are being conducted online only.
Real Estate Auctioneer:
In some parts of the country (particularly in rural farm country) if you told your neighbor you were selling your real estate, you would get a very strange look if you did not also use the word auction. A great deal of real estate is sold by the auction method of marketing. Quite a lot of the best real estate sells at auction. We have associates who sold the Versace Mansion at auction, and another who sold a 94,000 acre ranch at auction.
Livestock Auctioneer: A lot of livestock in the USA sells at auction. It is still the most likely way livestock will sell. There are many types of animal livestock auctions, but according to the National Auctioneers Association, most fall into two categories, Purebred auctions or Commercial Livestock auctions.
Benefit or Charity Auctioneer: Recently auctioneers have started focusing on the benefit or charity market. Many organizations rely on the money they raise in their benefit auction as one of the central means of funding the organization for the year, and benefit auctioneer is one of the fastest growing fields in the auction world.