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Buying at Auction

How to buy at auction?

At Dreweatts we want you to have an enjoyable experience and to make buying at auction as smooth as possible. There are a variety of ways that you can participate in our auctions. Simply register for the auction you are interested in and then choose your preferred bidding method.


Live online bidding

With a live video feed from the auction, Dreweatts’ bidding platform allows you to watch, listen and bid from anywhere in the world. Our auctions are also listed on 3rd party online platforms. Please note there may be a surcharge for bidding via these platforms.

Bid Online

Bid at the auction

Bidding in person is the best way to really experience the thrill of the sale. Once you have registered with our reception, you will be given your bidding paddle. You can then take your seat and start bidding. If you are successful, the auctioneer will ask you to confirm your paddle number and shortly after this you will be able to pay and collect your item.

If you are unable to attend the auction or bid live online, you may wish to leave a commission (absentee) bid. Simply complete a commission bid form and state the maximum hammer price you are prepared to bid. Dreweatts will then bid on your behalf and, taking into account any other bids and any reserve price. Please note if two or more people submit identical commission bids, the first bid received will be executed.

Complete a commission bid form

Register a telephone bid

Dreweatts offers the facility to bid by telephone. You will need to book a telephone line in advance of the auction. Dreweatts will then call you when your lot(s) are about to come up for sale enabling you to bid live on the telephone.

Please note there is a limit to the number of telephone bids that we can execute for any particular lot, therefore telephone bids are accepted on a first come first served basis. Requests should be made by 4pm on the day before the auction.

What will I be charged?

Breakdown of Buyers Premium

For all categories (except wine) the Buyer’s Premium is charged per lot at 25% of the hammer price (30% including VAT). For wine, the Buyer’s Premium is charged per lot at 15% (18% including VAT).
For example:

Hammer price: £100
Premium at 25% of £100 = £25
VAT at 20% of £25 = £5
Total price: £130

Other fees may apply:

Artist’s Resale Royalty
Indicates that the lot may be subject to Droit de Suite royalty charges.
Indicates that the lot may be subject to CITES regulations when exported.
Vatable Lot
Indicates that VAT is payable by the purchaser at the standard rate of 20% on the hammer price as well as being charged on the buyers’ premium.
VAT zero rated item
Indicates that the lot is subject to buyer’s premium of 25% exclusive of VAT (0% VAT).
Import VAT – 5%
Indicates that the lot is being sold whilst subject to temporary importation and that VAT is due at the reduced rate (5%).
Import VAT – 20%
Indicates that the lot has been imported from outside the EU and the lot is liable to the standard rate of Import VAT currently 20% on the hammer price.
Wine in bond
Currently held in bond and will be subject to Duty upon release.
3rd Party Platform
  Lots bought via a 3rd party bidding platform, may be subject to an additional fee charged by the 3rd party platform.

 For further details please see our full terms and conditions.

How to make a payment

Payment will be accepted by:

  • Debit card issued by a UK bank and registered to a UK billing address
  • By all major UK issued credit cards registered to a UK billing address with the exception of American Express and Diners Club
  • By bank transfer direct into our bank account
  • In cash up to £8,000 (subject to relevant money laundering regulations)
  • By Sterling personal cheques drawn on a UK bank account. Dreweatts regrets that purchases paid for by this method cannot be collected until your cheque has cleared; please allow six working days

Collection and Delivery

We are unable to store sold lots at Donnington Priory, therefore it is your responsibility to make payment and arrange collection within four working days of the sale. All items not collected within four working days of the sale (by 4pm) will automatically be sent to commercial storage and will subject to a storage charge. Collections are possible from Monday – Friday (9am – 5pm). Collections are not possible at weekends.

If you are unable to collect yourself, please contact us for a list of UK and international shipping companies who will be able to provide you with a shipping quote.