Be a Bidder!



Every auction-goer begins as a novice. No one is born knowing how auctions work and how to bid in a live, face-to-face interaction. Most of our retail experiences are guided by clear price tags and labels. When purchasing basic supplies as fuel or groceries, you know the price ahead of time.

Auctions can be daunting for inexperienced bidders. Not knowing where to go, how to follow the items being sold, how to communicate with the auctioneer, where to stand, and even which door to walk in can keep confident buyers from attending auctions. We believe auctions are great fun and we’re happy to answer questions and point you in the right direction. In many cases, asking questions upon arrival is encouraged and helpful to the auctioneers and staff.

We want you to attend and enjoy sales with Lehde Auction Service. For even the most nervous attendant or bidder, please know that if you bid on the wrong item and win, the auctioneers at Lehde Auction Service can cancel your bid and re-sell the item. We want you to feel comfortable as you learn how auctions work.


While we can’t speak for other auction businesses, here’s a quick preview of what to expect at a Lehde Auction Service sale:

• Before the auction, an “auction preview” is offered to the public. The day and time will be posted on our website and on advertisements. This preview offers you a chance to look at items and pieces at your own leisure. You can ask questions, inspect items, take notes, and get a general sense of the auction layout.  Please say hi to any of our auctioneers or workers and let us know if this is your first auction!

• The auction start time is firm but you can float in and out as you please. Some people stay for 30 minutes, some stay for the entire auction. On average, our estate auctions last five or six hours. Specialty items like guns or vehicles may be sold at a predetermined time. You can ask us at the preview about the order items will be sold. Furniture and large items are sometimes sold last. Outdoor items and tools are sometimes sold at the very beginning of the sale. Ask us for our best guess or an estimate of how soon we’ll reach a certain point. We won’t be able to guarantee you a timDSC_0764e but we can let you know what will be sold first.

• When you first arrive, go directly to our Lehde Auction Service trailer to get your bid number. Keep your bid number with you at all times. If you drop or misplace your bid number, inform the workers in the trailer. We will get you a new number or let you know if someone found and returned your original bid number.

• Our auctions are often large enough to require two simultaneous auction rings which means two auctioneers are selling different items at the same time. Each auction ring will be clearly separate from the other. You can bid in either ring at any time.

• To get the hang of it, start bidding! Our auctioneers accept any and all head nods, hand gestures, raised bid numbers, words, or signals to show your bid. To avoid confusion, we like to make eye contact with each bidder and talk to you directly. The Hollywood mistake of scratching your ear and inadvertently buying a ranch won’t happen to you. We will ask for any final bids and give all bidders an opportunity to win each item. An auction might first appear chaotic but the bidding happens at a pace slow enough to give you time to consider the item and your bid. Our auction pieces are organized into categories (e.g., quilts followed by kitchen cookware followed by sporting equipment) and are sold in order of arrangement. We take the time to arrange each item for maximum visibility and we’ve accepted and approved each and every item we sell. We will announce the condition of an item if it has known damage or flaws and we try to test every electrical item.

• After an item sells, the price, winning bidder number, and a brief description is recorded on a ticket. The tickets are sent directly to the auction trailer where you picked up your bid number. When you are ready to pay for your items, we add up the total amount from each ticket. We don’t currently accept credit or debit cards but we accept cash or a check with your phone number accompanied by a photo ID. You will get a receipt and copy of each purchase ticket for your records.

• You are welcome to claim your items as soon as you are the winning bidder. We often have boxes under our display tables for you to use. If you purchased any furniture or large items you can’t take immediately, ask about picking up your items at a later time. As an example, we frequently offer an arranged time the day following a sale when you can access your purchased items. Lehde Auction Service is happy to help you load or carry your winnings. If a fellow auction-goer hasn’t already offered help, please tell any of the auctioneers or workers know how we can help you.


We don’t know exactly how other auctions are handled, but we like to work hard and have fun at Lehde Auction Service. We aren’t overly formal so feel free to wear jeans and casual shoes. You can chat and mingle with fellow auction-goers, but most people following the bidding are focused on the items and auctioneers. You can socialize as little or as much as you want.

Learning how to bid and win at auctions is a satisfying skill that can bring you unexpected treasures. Come join Lehde Auction Service’s next sale and let us know how we can help you enjoy bidding!

Call Jim at (618) 559-5082 for any questions or updates regarding a specific sale. Lehde Auction Service can be found on by following this link or searching for Auctioneer ID #23692. Look through the photos of unique and special items available at our next auction.

We hope to meet you at one of our upcoming auctions!