We ended up going to an aquarium club auction today. Tommy has never been to an aquarium auction before and I have never been to any type of auction really so we really had no idea what to expect. It turned out to be extremely fun! This is a great place to meet a whole bunch of aquarium enthusiasts who are all friendly and knowledgeable. You can get some really great deals for a lot of shrimp, fish, equipment and more! Everyone brings things they hope to sell to get rid of their stuff and make room to buy new stuff. Its a great way to get great deals on alot of things you might be looking for. We saw some great pieces of unique driftwood, plants, shrimp and fish that are very hard to find in the regular fish stores. Great deals on aquariums from people who are getting rid of their equipment. One mans trash is another mans treasure.
I would recommend that anyone who is interested to go check out your local fish club auctions, you are guaranteed to find things there that you would find very difficult to find at a generic pet or aquarium store.
Some Examples of things that were sold at this auction:
-Working outside filters sold for $3, $2
-Mosquito fish – hard to find bought for 16$
-White crayfish – $5
-Rili Shrimp 6 for $8
-S grade CRS 12 for $16
-Aquarium digest international complete set collectable – 20$
- Huge Bags of java ferns = $8, $6
- Huge 14 inch pleco for = $10
- Big bag of Java moss = $8
- Numerous used but still in very good shape 10 Gallon Aquariums = $2, $3, $5 (what a steal!)
***What did we buy? I will put a Haul Video up soon! =)
Here are some tips that I have come across from this experience to make the best of your day!
- Go early. Is best to get there as early as you can so you can anticipate and look at all the items carefully up close before had talk to the sellers and strategize what you want to buy. If you are in a rush or not paying attention and they start auction you might end up making purchases that you didn’t end up wanting in the end, or missing out on bidding for things that you really wanted.
-Bring a pen, and paper you can write down the items you want to buy the table they are at the lot #. How much money you are spending, how your going to budget your money etc. Make sure your thoughts, money and Time are organized.
-If you are not knowledgeable about the market and it’s a prices, it helps to bring your smartphone so you can look up prices online, care instructions for species you see that your interested in that are new to you etc. So you know what kind of price you want to pay to get a deal and if you have the means to take care of it once you get home.
- Bring cash! Most of these small auctions are cash only. Also it really helps to set a budget for yourself so you don’t go overboard and spend too much. Especially with the thrill of bidding and winning things, it is very easy to get excited and go overboard – and this goes for any kind of auction.
- Don’t be shy, meet people, get business cards, emails, ask questions, make friends, etc. If Knowledge is power, Then having a Network of Knowledgeable people = Power X 100!
-Bring food and water, it’s usually a whole day event so unless you want to starve or miss out on some auctions while your out getting food then you should be prepared to eat there too. They might sell little snacks and other food to raise proceeds for the club. Which I believe is good to support, but the selection is very limited. In case you’re a picky eater, or have allergies to certain things then you should come prepared.
-Always bring Styrofoam container to keep your fish and shrimp from fluctuations in temperature especially in the winter or heat of summer and especially if you have to drive a while to get there.
-Know what kind of fish, shrimp, plants and equipment you want and need. It helps to have a direction and motive so you don’t go off on a tangent and buy something you don’t need.
-Know what you have at home, have extra tanks ready for things so you can acclimate them right when you get home, don’t buy anything if you don’t already have a place to put them!
-If your budget permits try to stay the whole day. The crowd will lessen as the day goes on, and you might get really good deals with less competition.
-Go with a friend! And if u can’t you will surely make some there! The more the merrier and the bigger the fish enthusiast community gets, the farther along our hobby will evolve =)
TIPS FOR SELLING YOUR STUFF AT AUCTIONS
-Bag your items really well and with lots of air and double bag etc. They will be picked up and moved around, and with all the commotion it might get a bit of accidental rough housing. If your bag starts to leak and you don’t have extras and no one else does then that’s a problem. Your things might also be waiting for the whole day for a later day auction so make sure they are in the best possible packaging to ensure they don’t get too stressed. For shrimp give them something to hang on to. Some moss, or other loose plants or a piece of mesh.
-Label your items clearly, put pictures, and attach the label firmly so it doesn’t get lost. It helps to be thorough and aesthetically neat when labeling to convince people at they have been taken care of properly and interesting to buy – people are drawn to attractive packaging and are deterred from messy. It will make a small difference, but with so hundreds of things that will be selling making yours stand out might get the attention it needs to fetch a good price.
- Be realistic don’t expect to make a boatload of money. Bring things you need to or should get rid of. People are here to find good deals so unless you absolutely have something very rare that is in high demand people will not bid high for them. But it’s a great way to get rid of fish or equipment that you don’t need. For example if you’ve been very successful with breeding and have no room for all the offspring, if you have a lot of growth from your plants you want to get rid of, Etc. Most fish clubs will take a percentage of the sale as well so you really will make only up to 70% of what the auction sells for.
- For equipment label that it works!!! That helps a lot!! It seems like common sense but a lot of people forgot this time around. People will be weary of bidding if it isnt guaranteed to work!