Insider Tips About Postal Service Auctions

US Postal Service auctions can be an outlet to find extremely valuable products at low cost. This is an article that gives you insider tips on how to get the most out of a Postal Service Auction.

A US Postal Service auction can be very exciting somewhere between Las Vegas and a flea market. Here you are able to gamble for bargains and you may come out a winner or you may come out a loser. This all depends on the strategy you have chosen. But in the meantime you have had loads of fun, and you may just pick up the deal of a lifetime.

The Postal Service holds regular auctions on lost damaged or undeliverable merchandise every two to four months in all Major US cities. You must call the main post office in your city to find out the times and dates that this will occur.

At these auctions you will find merchandise that will range from jeans and Oriental furniture to dishwashing liquid and microcomputers. You will find anything that can be sent through the mail, the majority of the auction items are stereo equipment, TVs, radios, dishes, pots and pans, tools, typewriters, clothing, books, coins, and many other items.

A Postal Auction is unique in its workings; items are sold by lots. Articles that are similar are often grouped together, such as a dozen pairs of jeans or four typewriter or three radios. These items must be purchased together, it is suggested that you bring a friend or family members and you all can get great deals.

Remember to check with your local Post Office for the dates of the actual auction, because the lots are displayed the day before the auction. On the day of the auction inspection is not permitted and you will only be allowed to view the items. The lots will be in compartments or bins that are always covered with netting. None of the items will be allowed to be handled or tested. The only items that are allowed to be handled are clothing that are on hangers. These bins or compartments will not have proper lighting, it is highly recommended to bring a flashlight to get a better look at the items you will be buying.

You will be given a mimeographed sheet on the day of inspection. This will be a list of the lots available; the lots are listed by number. These lots will be auctioned off by number and each lot has a minimum bid listed by it on the sheet. This minimum bid is the least amount that can be offered as a bid on that lot. The minimum bid will never be less than ten dollars. The minimum bid is not an indication of how much the lot will sell for; many of the lots sell for three to five times that amount.

Remember that all the lots are sold as is. The Postal Service will mark items that is recognizes as being damaged. They are not trying to trick you into paying high prices for damaged goods. There are no warranties or guarantees and all sales are final.

On the inspection day, which is the day before the actual auction, you may buy a paddle. The paddle is used for bidding it will have a number on it that is your bidder number. The auctioneer will recognize this as your bidder number. When an item appears that you wish to bid on you will hold up the paddle until the prices being called by the auctioneer exceed what you are willing to pay. The cost of the paddle depends on each auction, but if you do not buy anything the cost of the paddle will be refunded. If you do purchase items the cost of the paddle will be deducted from your total bill.

After you have bid on a lot and have won that bid, you will be required to pay fifty percent of the purchase price with cash or certified funds within thirty minutes. If you will be paying by certified funds, bring several certified checks instead on one large amount. If you prefer the Postal Service gladly accepts cash. The US Postal Service will allow up to two days to pick up your merchandise after the auction, you must bring your own containers to haul away your purchase.

The bidding at these types of auctions is extremely unpredictable. There is absolutely no way of knowing how much a lot will sell for. Some lots are overbid for while other lots go for the minimum bid. This all depends on who is at the auction and how much they want that particular item or lot. If a bidder is in the market for a particular item and is willing to pay to have it, the bid could go well over retail price.

If you do decide to attend a US Postal Service auction keep in mind these few tips. First go through the list of lots carefully while looking at the merchandise and write down your maximum bid that you are willing to pay. During the actual auction bidding can easily become confusing fast, the prices increase by two dollars at a time and bidders drop out quickly. Listen to the bidding carefully, avoid distractions, do not exceed your maximum bid.

Sit in the back of the room so you will be able to see who is bidding against you. If you are in the market for a particular item you will be able to determine how many others are in the same market that day. You will also be able to see when people drop out of the bidding.

Try to take someone knowledgeable with you for the visual inspection of the lots. If you are planning to bid on something like electronic equipment find out how much that particular piece is worth and calculate your top bid by including how much it will cost to be repaired if need be.

Your best bets in getting a great deal at US Postal Service auctions are dishes, cutlery, pots and pans, had tools, furniture and clothing. These items you can visually inspect and have a minimal chance of being damaged.

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