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Has COVID-19 seen the last of traditional property auctioneering?


The past year has seen a huge shift in the way we do almost everything. However, it would have been hard to anticipate the shift change that the COVID-19 pandemic has caused for how property is sold at auction. As 2021 progresses and restrictions look set to ease, we are asking: will we ever see a return to traditional auctioneering?

COVID compliance

The last traditional property auctions took place almost twelve months ago, before the rise of COVID-19 saw auctions moving online in order to be compliant with government safety measures.

The move to online auctions seemed to pose big challenges for the auctioneering sector, which has run via a primarily face-to-face buyer experience in pre COVID times. However, the move from traditional ballroom auctioneering to virtual has been more successful than we could have anticipated.

Successful shifts

Here at Phillip Arnold Auctions, we have embraced new technologies enabling us to successfully hold virtual online property auctions.

Buyers are becoming familiar with the new processes of registering to bid prior to the auction in which can be viewed online through our website.

Some of which are believing that the dominance of online auctioneering has only been hastened by the current situation. Those with one eye on modernity believe that the traditional “ballroom” style auction is outdated.

Whatever the truth of that, the success of widespread online auctioneering has definitely inspired the belief that a new kind of auctioneering could well be the only way forward, as buyers love the convenience and the speed of selling property online in this manner.

Looking forward

Projecting forwards throughout 2021 and beyond, we can see that in many areas, the virtual world will remain the main way in which many things are done. Auctioneering has had such great successes in making the transition that one may fear for the traditional model, hearing a death knell.

However, while it is highly likely that many property auctions will be held online for convenience and the comfort of the public as we all readjust to life getting back to “normal”, a hybrid model is likely to emerge, at least for the time being. This means that the auction house setting may be replicated in an online forum, giving people the thrill of the auction house once more.

After all, traditional property auctions hold a kind of excitement and charm all their own, with many missing the “buzz” of traditional auctioneering.

Meeting in the middle, with some online auctioneering and some traditional, is highly likely to be the way of the future.