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Auctioneer

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Summary of occupation

Before an auction, auctioneers may be required to inspect a property or goods for sale and arrange any necessary advertising to promote the auction. They also discuss with vendors the lowest price for goods that the vendor will be willing to accept. During the auction they may have to explain the terms of the sale, answer any questions, describe the goods for sale including any special features, ask for bids and adjust the amount between bids as the auction progresses. After the auction they may assist in finalising the sale.

ANZSCO description: Conducts sales of real estate, goods and livestock by taking offers from buyers and accepting the highest purchase price (registration or licensing is required).
Alternative names:
Specialisations: Antiques Auctioneer, Livestock Auctioneer, Plant and Equipment Auctioneer, Real Estate Auctioneer, Vehicle Auctioneer
Job prospects: Limited
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Knowledge, skills and attributes

An auctioneer needs:

  • a strong, clear voice
  • to be able to address large groups of people 
  • self-confidence
  • to be able to make quick, sound decisions.
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Working conditions

An auctioneer may have to work outside if auctioning livestock or real estate, otherwise inside. They may have to work evenings and weekends, visiting properties or merchandise and conducting auctions. During auctions they need to be confident as they must stand before often large groups of people.

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Salary details

On average, auctioneers, classified under auctioneers, and stock and station agents, can expect to earn $1 250 to $1 499 per week ($65 000 and $77 999 a year), depending on the organisation they work for, and their level of experience. As an auctioneer develops their skills, their earning potential will generally increase. 

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Tools and technologies

An auctioneer’s voice is his/her main tool in this line of work. They should be familiar with the goods up for auction. A gavel and stand are used in this occupation – the gavel to inform bidders that the highest bid has been reached, and a good ‘sold’.

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Education and training/entrance requirements

You can work as an auctioneer without any formal qualifications and receive training on the job.

The Real Estate Institute of Western Australia and the Auctioneers and Valuers Association of Australia do, however, offer short courses in auctioneering and valuation practice. Entry requirements to these courses may vary. Contact the organisations for further details.

​Auctioneers must be at least 18 years old, have a licence granted by a magistrate and issued by a local clerk of court. If an auctioneer needs to deal with dangerous and/or sensitive goods, such as liquor, firearms, motor vehicles or live animals, they may require extra licences.

Related courses

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Apprenticeships and traineeships

As an apprentice or trainee, you enter into a formal training contract with an employer. You spend most of your time working and learning practical skills on the job and you spend some time undertaking structured training with a registered training provider of your choice. They will assess your skills and when you are competent in all areas, you will be awarded a nationally recognised qualification.

If you are still at school you can access an apprenticeship through your school. You generally start your school based apprenticeship by attending school three days a week, spending one day at a registered training organisation and one day at work. Talk to your school's VET Co-ordinator to start your training now through VET in Schools. If you get a full-time apprenticeship you can apply to leave school before reaching the school leaving age.

If you are no longer at school you can apply for an apprenticeship or traineeship and get paid while you learn and work.

Related apprenticeships

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Recognition of prior learning

If you think you already have some of the skills or competencies, obtained either through non-formal or informal learning, you may be able to gain credit through recognition of prior learning.

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