Bidding at Whyte’s

Useful Advice for Absentee Bidders

The essentials of "winning lots" (as the Americans so fittingly put it) at auction are:

  • Decide on the maximum price you would pay for the lot and bid that amount. The estimate is a guide price but occasionally the estimate is either too low or too high - use your own judgement.
  • We will try and secure the lot/lots for you at the lowest possible price, other bids allowing. For instance if you bid €1,000 on a lot and the highest other bid we receive is €700, you will get it for €750.
  • Avoid bidding round sums - winning bids are often odd amounts such as €1,100, €3,200, €42,000 and so on.
    If the lot is a really outstanding or rare item that has not come on the market for some time and you really want it do not be afraid to bid aggressively (within your means, of course!) - in these cases the auctioneer's estimate is often well under what it eventually realises, as prices on such rarities are decided by the bidders.
  • Break ties: give us discretion to up your bid to beat an equal bid to yours. If your bid is €1000 "break ties" and a floor bidder reaches €1000 before you we will bid €1050 for you to break the tie.
  • Bids are taken to be in EURO (€) unless clearly stated otherwise by the bidder e.g. "I AM BIDDING IN US$". Bids will be converted at rates prevailing at the time of sale and at the discretion of the auctioneer.
  • Bid in step: bidding steps in our auctions are: up to €100 - €5 steps; €100 to €190 - €10 steps; €200 to €680 - €20 steps; €700 to €1250 - €50 steps; €1,300 to €2,900 - €100 steps; €3,000 to €6,800 - €200 steps; €7,000 to €12,500 - €500 steps, €13,000 to €29,000 - €1,000 steps; €30,000 to €68,000 - €2,000 steps; €70,000+ - at auctioneer's discretion.
  • Interested in several lots but only want to buy one or two? USE LIMIT BIDDING: Bidders may limit their total purchases to a set amount by entering their limit on the bidding form. This is especially useful for bidders wishing to cover as many lots as possible while setting a maximum amount to spend. For instance you are interested in ten lots with a total value of €10,000 but you only want to spend €5,000 - bid on them all and CLEARLY INDICATE your total spend limit of €5000. Note that we can only bid for you in the order that the lots come in the catalogue.
  • "OR" BIDDING: bidders may bid on two or more lots, but only wish to purchase one, by entering "OR" between the bids.
  • "BUY" BIDS: Unless otherwise instructed bids of "Buy" or "Buy at Best" shall be taken to indicate bids of up to three times the stated catalogue higher estimate. Thus a "buy bid" on a lot estimated at €800 to €1000 will be taken as a bid of €3000. We prefer that you state your actual top limit clearly rather than "buy", as it saves problems such as two "buy" bids.
  • TELEPHONE/FAX/E-MAIL BIDS: Telephone bids may be made up to 01-676 2888 (International Access +353-1 from outside Republic of Ireland). Fax bids to 01 676 2880 (International Access +353-1 from outside Republic of Ireland). E-mail bids to . Telephone, fax or e-mail bids made later than one hour before the sale starts risk not being entered in time. We do not accept any responsibility for errors made in taking bids, especially by telephone, but every effort is made to ensure accuracy.
  • LIVE INTERNET BIDDING: For most sales we offer live bidding with streaming audio and video feeds so you can watch and listen to the auction and bid from anywhere in the world. The internet provider charges on-line buyers a fee of 3%. To bid on-line you need to register to avail of this service. 
    Please click here to register.
  • LIVE TELEPHONE BIDDING: we can arrange to telephone you on lots you are interested in and you can bid live on the line. You must pre-register for this indicating the lot or lots you wish to bid on and give a telephone number (preferably a fixed land line) where we can reach you at the time of sale. This service is subject to the number of telephone lines available to us at the time of the sale and is at our discretion. This service is limited to lots with a lower estimate of €2,000+.
  • INVOICING AND PAYMENT: Successful absentee bidders will be sent a pro forma invoice after the sale with details of payment methods. All invoices must be paid within 7 days of the date of the sale.