Is buying a property through an auction a viable option during lockdown?

“The coronavirus crisis has led to a rising interest in selling at auction, with this industry more prepared and better-equipped than most to operate remotely,” explains Zah Azeem, Partner at Scrivener Tibbatts.

Some were doing online auctions of some form already, or at the very least accepting online bids during the traditional auction process, while others have adapted in recent months to offer their usual auctions in a social distancing-friendly way.

Our online auctions continue to run the same as they’ve always done. SDL for example have online auctions every day of the year, all of which are open to real time bidding as you would with other online auction sites.

Obviously, due to the government’s social distancing rules, auctions are no longer able to be held in a public space with hundreds of buyers raising their bidding paddles but broadcasting auctions live and accepting proxy, internet and phone bids is fairly standard practice.

As reported here by Property Investor Today SDL held its first fully remote auctions in March and have raised over £7.1 million for sellers and saw more than 1,800 people tune in to watch live. For their next National Property Auction on 30th April, they have more than 110 lots for sale and are confident of another great auction for our buyers and sellers.

Zah continues: “Selling a property like this is often born of necessity and this crisis is not going to change that. If anything, some sellers will have an even greater need for the speed and security provided by an auction sale – maybe due to financial issues, for example.

“However if you are a buyer please seek professional guidance from a qualified surveyor before you make a buying decision which could have thousands of pounds of hidden costs.”

There is always likely to be demand from investors, regardless of circumstances, so auctions will continue once the national lockdown is lifted with more auction houses offering the option of joining online. 

SDL’s latest online auctions were watched by nearly 2,000 people. Confidence from sellers appears particularly high.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, our offices are still closed in line with Government guidelines, with all staff working from home. Our response times may increase a little however but we are working on all existing files with full access from home.  However, due to the current situation response times to our queries have increased so updates may take longer than normal.

Keep safe and well during these difficult times.

If you would like to discuss this or something related to a valuation please contact or call us on 020 8947 7040.