There’s somewhat of an old saying in the auction business: “The worse the weather, the bigger the crowds …” The theory? Everyone thinks nobody else will be there and the “prospect of a deal” drives those folks to brave the storm.
Except — that is — if the weather or conditions are too bad for even those with an extraordinary resolution to attend. All roadways closed to non-emergency personnel? Tornado or hurricane warning? Severe flooding? Yes, bad weather drives bidders, but really bad weather doesn’t.
Online auctions can mitigate most bad weather conditions — here again unless conditions adversely affect electric, the Internet and possibly even scheduled pickups and/or shipping.
What is an auctioneer to do in the event of really bad weather? First, check with the seller(s) to see what he/she/they want the next steps to be. Further, the contract with between the auctioneer and seller could address what is done if the auction needs to be postponed.
Delaying the auction can be tricky. Maybe your auction is “Every Friday at 6:30 p.m.” so most everyone has that time allotted on their calendars. With a snowstorm Friday night, it may make more sense to delay until next Friday rather than that following day …
Some online auction providers have been encouraging bidders to stay home (and thus bid online) rather than fight the crowds and/or weather. We wrote about one such company’s aberrant behavior: https://mikebrandlyauctioneer.wordpress.com/2018/02/26/dont-bid-live-bid-online/.
Lastly, which is better … really warm or really cold? Many auction buyers I know prefer colder over warmer. They tell me they can bundle up and get warmer, but it’s hard to battle high temperatures.
Mike Brandly, Auctioneer, CAI, CAS, AARE has been an auctioneer and certified appraiser for over 30 years. His company’s auctions are located at: Mike Brandly, Auctioneer, RES Auction Services and Goodwill Columbus Car Auction. He serves as Distinguished Faculty at Hondros College, Executive Director of The Ohio Auction School, an Instructor at the National Auctioneers Association’s Designation Academy and America’s Auction Academy. He is faculty at the Certified Auctioneers Institute held at Indiana University and is approved by the The Supreme Court of Ohio for attorney education.