Please visit our Register to Bid page here and choose the ‘Onsite Bidding’ option and the auction which you would like to bid. Please note that you will be required to create an account on rmsothebys.com. Once your registration has been processed, you will receive a confirmation from one of our Client Service Representatives via email.
How do I become a registered bidder if I am attending one of your auctions?
What is the cost to become a registered bidder if I am to attend one of your auctions?
The registration fee varies per auction. Please refer to the Bidder Registration information on the auction webpage for more information.
Can I register onsite at the event, or is it better to register in advance?
You are welcome to register onsite, however it is recommended that you register in advance to avoid potential onsite line-ups. If you are planning to register onsite, please ensure you bring all necessary requirements, including photo ID, a valid credit card, and a document providing proof of funds.
Do I need to register for each auction I wish to attend?
Yes, we do require a new application to be submitted for each auction. Documents requested during registration are only required once a year.
What is required to register to bid?
Photo identification (driver’s license or passport) and a valid credit card used for the authorization and the registration fee if required. We also require a document providing proof of funds (recent bank statement, brokerage account statement, or a letter directly from your bank). Samples can be found on our website here. If registering as a dealer, we require a copy of your dealer license and resale tax certificate. If you are registering as a company, we require proof of company, which includes copies of incorporation documents, VAT/Tax number.
Is the bidder registration fee refundable if I purchased at auction?
The bidder registration fee is a non-refundable fee.
Why do you require my credit card to register?
Credit cards serve as a means to verify credit history as well as a security measure for payment. All information will be kept confidential.
I see that there will be an authorization on my credit card. Will this be refunded to me after the sale?
The authorization placed on your credit card is not an actual charge. This is simply a hold that will automatically drop off your account between 7-30 days following the auction (depending on your financial institution). This will show as pending on your account and will not cause interest to accrue on your account. This is required to register as a bidder and simply acts as a security measure for payment.
I cannot attend the live auction, are there other ways to participate?
Yes, we are pleased to offer telephone, absentee, and online bidding for those unable to attend in person at the live auction.
What is telephone bidding?
If you are unable to attend one of our auctions or would prefer to place your bid(s) while onsite over the phone, you can arrange to have an RM Sotheby's representative call you to relay your bid(s) to the Auctioneer on your behalf.
You will need to provide:
- Your phone number(s), including the country code
- Your preferred language
- The lots that interest you (so that we can call you at the correct time)
What is absentee bidding?
RM Sotheby's offers absentee bidding to those who cannot attend our auctions. An RM Sotheby's Representative will bid for you on your chosen lot(s), starting with the lowest possible price, up to your pre-set maximum limit, until you have either won the lot(s) or your bid(s) has been surpassed.
You will need to:
- Select any lots that interest you
- Set the maximum amount you want to bid on each lot
Can I bid online for a lot sold in one of your live auctions?
If you wish to bid from the comfort of your home or office, or while on the go, simply return to our website on the day of the auction and click the BID NOW button. Our website will allow you to live stream our auction and bid on the lot(s) you are interested in, in real-time. Those who are new to the bidding process are urged to register in advance of the sale, as they will be required to create an account with a username and password.
What is a proof of funds document?
A document providing proof of funds can be a recent bank statement, a brokerage account statement, or a letter directly from your bank providing an available or average balance and showing your name is tied to the account. Samples can be found on our website here.
Is a proof of funds document required to register to bid?
I have submitted my registration, does this mean I am approved?
You will receive an email from an RM team member within 24 hours of registering. If we have received all required documentation, we will inform you in the email that you are fully approved to bid. If additional information is required to approve your registration, it will be explained in the email.
I have bid (either onsite, by telephone, or via absentee bid) with RM Sotheby’s in the past. Do I need to create a new account for online bidding?
If you have created an account on our website, you will just need to complete the registration. If you do not have an account on our website, you will have to create an account. This will provide you with access to the online console; you will then need to create an online account with a username and password and agree to the terms and conditions of the auction.
Is there a fee for bidding online?
No, there is no extra fee for bidding online. Successful buyers are still subject to the applicable Buyers’ premium as stated in the terms and conditions of the sale, sales tax (if not otherwise exempt), and any associated transportation/shipping fees for the lot.
What does it mean if a lot is offered without reserve?
If a lot is offered without reserve, it means it will sell to the highest bidder, regardless of the price achieved.
What are the bidding increments RM Sotheby’s uses for online auctions?
0 - 999
1,000 - 2,499
2,500 - 4,999
5,000 - 9,999
10,000 - 24,999
25,000 - 99,999
100,000 - 499,999
500,000 - 999,999
1,000,000 - 2,499,999
What are the bidding increments RM Sotheby’s uses for live auctions?
What are the conditions of sale?
Our terms and conditions describe the conditions of business under which RM Sotheby’s and the consignor agree to sell a lot to the purchaser. Please review the conditions carefully before bidding. By registering to bid and/or by bidding at auction, you agree to these terms.
How does timed bidding work?
Once logged in and registered to bid, additional information on the bidding process will be available on each individual lot page via the “HOW BIDDING WORKS” button. Key information included in the instructions is also listed below.
OUTBID NOTIFICATIONS: If a bid placed by another bidder exceeds your bid, you will be notified via the email address you provided during registration and the lot page will indicate you have been outbid.
ANTI-SNIPE FEATURE: If a bid is placed within the final two minutes, the auction will be extended by an additional two minutes to prevent a bidder from trying to place a high bid in the final moments of the auction.
LOTS WITH RESERVE: Some lots may be subject to a reserve price or the minimum amount that a seller will accept as the winning bid. The reserve price will remain confidential. For lots with a reserve price, your bid must meet or exceed the reserve to win the lot. In the event you are the highest final bidder, but your bid has not met the reserve price, the lot will not sell. For lots with reserves, bidding starts at half (50%) of the published low estimate, and the final bid must exceed the reserve price in order to sell to the highest bidder. Whether the reserve has been met will not be disclosed until the auction has ended.
Note: When a motor car or any other lot is sold subject to such reserve bid, the auctioneer (RMS) may bid on the Consignor’s behalf in an amount not to exceed the amount of the reserve bid.
LOTS WITHOUT RESERVE: If you are bidding on a lot that is “offered without reserve,” you will win the lot if you are the high bidder at the time bidding closes. For unreserved lots, bidding starts at 50%.
How does bidding work for a Sealed Bid sale?
For a sealed bid auction, you will only be able to see your own submitted bid—not the high/winning bid (unless you are the high bidder). The delta between bidder positions will not be disclosed.
Please enter the amount you would like to bid and click “Place Bid.” If your bid is greater than the current high bid, you will be the new high bidder, otherwise you will see where your current bid ranks from 1-5. If your bid is ranked 6th or lower, your ranking will be shown as 5+.
You may elect to raise your bid at any time while the lot is still open for bidding.
OUTBID NOTIFICATIONS: If you were the high bidder, but a bid placed by another bidder exceeds your bid, you will be notified via the email address or mobile number you have set in your account preferences, and the lot page will indicate you have been outbid by the change in your ranking.
ANTI-SNIPE FEATURE: If a bid is placed within the final 90 seconds that causes that bidder to be ranked in the top 3, the auction will be extended by an additional 90 seconds to prevent a bidder from trying to place a high bid in the final moments of the auction. This also gives the new bidder time to consider raising their bid further if they are not the high bidder.
LOTS WITH RESERVE: Some lots may be subject to a reserve price or the minimum amount that a seller will accept as the winning bid. The reserve price will remain confidential. For lots with a reserve price, your bid must meet or exceed the reserve to win the lot. If any bid meets or exceeds reserve, that will be noted. In the event you are the highest final bidder, but your bid has not met the reserve price, the lot will not sell.
LOTS WITHOUT RESERVE: If you are bidding on a lot that is “offered without reserve,” you will win the lot if you are the high bidder at the time bidding closes.
What happens to unsold lots?
Following the close of the auction, unsold lots will be listed as “Still for Sale” and will move to our Still for Sale section once the entire auction has closed. Interested parties are invited to contact an RM Sotheby’s Car Specialist to make an offer.
What are the ways to buy at RM Sotheby’s?
Items sold by RM Sotheby’s are offered either via auction or via private sale. Auction lots require you to become a registered bidder and participate in the live or online sale to acquire the item. Items that are offered via our Private Sale platform can be acquired simply by making an offer to our team.
What are acceptable methods of payment for the purchase of a vehicle?
All payments must be made in the form of certified funds. This includes cash, wire transfers, and certified checks. You may also pay with a personal/company check as long as it is accompanied by a Bank letter of Guarantee. A sample of the bank letter of guarantee can be found on our website here. We now also accept Cryptocurrency as a form of payment via BitPay. This requires a BitPay account to be able to use for any payments.
How can I purchase a car via RM Sotheby’s Private Sales?
How do I pay with Cryptocurrency?
Prior to an RM Sotheby’s auction, the intended buyer must have a pre-approved BitPay ID
- To get a BitPay ID you can visit https://bitpay.com/signup
- RM Sotheby’s and BitPay reserve the right to deny any BitPay ID application
- If you are the winning bidder, BitPay will then send you an email invoice to which you will complete your payment using your BitPay ID and following BitPay’s payment procedure. In general, the steps are:
- Sign in to your BitPay account that correlates with your BitPay ID
- Select the 'View Bill' button within your email invoice
- Review and verify the invoice details, selecting the 'Pay with BitPay' button to proceed
- Select the wallet and cryptocurrency you want to pay with
- Scan the QR code or copy and paste the payment details into your wallet
- Confirm the payment request in your wallet
- Congratulations! Your payment has been successfully processed
Further instructions can be found here: https://support.bitpay.com/hc/en-us/articles/115005559826-How-do-I-pay-a-BitPay-invoice-
DISCLAIMER: In Step 5, the exchange rate is locked for 15 minutes. RM Sotheby’s and BitPay are not responsible for any exchange rate changes when payment does not occur within the 15-minute period.
Who is BitPay?
BitPay is the world’s largest provider of bitcoin and cryptocurrency payment services. Founded in 2011, while Bitcoin was still in its early stages, they set out to revolutionize the financial industry—making payments faster, more secure, and less expensive globally. BitPay pioneered blockchain payment technology to transform how businesses and people send, receive, and store money worldwide. A decade later, BitPay is still creating more tools and services for everyone to use in innovative ways.
What is Bitcoin?
Bitcoin is a secure, digital currency that can be used to exchange money over the Internet. There are no central banks or authorities. Bitcoin is truly open—compatible across platforms, technologies, and even borders. It's great for fraud protection too! With no credit card numbers for someone to steal, it's safe and secure.
What are cryptocurrencies?
A cryptocurrency is a digital or virtual currency that is secured by cryptography. Many cryptocurrencies are decentralized networks based on blockchain technology—a distributed ledger enforced by a disparate network of computers. The word cryptocurrency is derived from the encryption techniques which are used to secure the network. Examples of cryptocurrencies include Bitcoin, Bitcoin Cash, Dogecoin, Ethereum, and Litecoin.
What cryptocurrencies can I use?
BitPay supports leading coins including Bitcoin (BTC), Bitcoin Cash (BCH), Dogecoin (DOGE), Ethereum (ETH), Litecoin (LTC), Wrapped Bitcoin (WBTC), and 5 USD-pegged stable coins (BUSD, DAI, GUSD, USDP, and USDC).
What crypto wallets can I use?
BitPay supports more than 90 different crypto wallets and exchanges including BitPay, Coinbase, Exodus Wallet, Ledger Wallet, Trust Wallet, Electrum Wallet, Blockchain Wallet, Metamask, Crypto.com, Gemini Wallet, Kraken, BRD Wallet, and more.
Why is there 1% added on top of my total bid plus buyer’s premium and any applicable VAT when paying with cryptocurrency?
In order to process cryptocurrency, there is a vendor fee of 1% that is applicable to the total invoice amount. The total invoice amount includes the hammer price of your bid, plus buyer’s premium and any applicable VAT. The embedded BitPay invoice includes the 1% added vendor fee.
Where can I find the exchange rate of cryptocurrencies?
You can see current exchange rates for all supported coins by visiting https://bitpay.com/exchange-rates/.
What is a buyer’s premium?
The buyer's premium is a percentage additional charge on the hammer price of the lot that is paid by the winning bidder. Each auction lot will be subject to buyer’s premium. These percentages are noted on the lot page under ‘Additional Information’.
Do I have to pay sales tax?
All individuals are required to pay tax unless otherwise exempt. To understand exemptions, please contact a member of our Client Team.
I just purchased at auction, what are the next steps?
Following the auction, you will receive an invoice and payment instructions from our Client Team. Payment is due in full on the first business day following the sale. The Client Team will then work with you to arrange transport of the lot to its final destination.
I need help shipping my car, who would you recommend?
When will I receive the registration documents for the car I purchased?
Title and registration documents will be sent to you within 20 business days following the auction and/or receipt of funds.
Does RM Sotheby’s offer financing?
Yes, we are pleased to offer several options for financing including Consignor advantages, Equity Releases, Acquisition financing/Bridge loans, and Portfolio loans. More detailed information can be found on our website here.
How do I consign with RM Sotheby’s?
What does it cost to sell a car with RM Sotheby’s?
To sell a vehicle with RM Sotheby's, the consignor is responsible for a marketing fee as well as a seller's commission. These costs differ depending on the route to sale. One of our specialist team will review with you when discussing your property.
What different sale channels are available to me?
We are pleased to offer a variety of routes to sale, including live auctions, online timed auctions, sealed bid auctions, or private sale transactions.
What is a seller’s commission?
The seller’s commission is a percentage of the sale proceeds owed to RM Sotheby’s for conducting the sale of your consignment(s).
What kind of title/registration work do I need to provide?
You must provide any and all titles, registration documents, or appropriate documents evidencing your ownership and/or government registrations (such as Purchase Agreements and Bills of Sale) to your vehicle. Your title/registration must reflect the correct year, make, model, and VIN number of the vehicle.
Who do I give my title/registration to?
Your title/registration must be given to a member of the Administration team prior to your vehicle being sold. Details on where to send these items will be outlined on your consignment agreement.
Who do I give accompanying items to?
Any historical documents, photos etc. should be scanned to our archivist or couriered to one of our offices at the time of consignment. Accompanying items such as tool rolls, trophies, etc. should be shipped with your vehicle to live auctions or placed within your vehicle prior to being shipped following a private sale or online auction.
How do I transport my car to the auction site? Which carrier should I use?
If you require assistance arranging transportation to the auction site, a member of our Logistics team would be happy to assist you with this. Depending on the auction you are consigning to, we have preferred domestic and international shippers that we work with to transport your consignment(s).
When will I receive proceeds from the sale of my car?
Proceeds are paid within 21 business days after the auction, provided that all required documentation has been submitted.
What happens if my car is not sold?
If your vehicle is not sold, per our standard consignment agreement, RM Sotheby’s will retain the right and authority to advertise and sell the vehicle within 90 business days. If the vehicle fails to sell at a live auction, note that you must arrange for collection by the next business day following the auction. A member of our Administration or Logistics team can assist you with this.
What kinds of services does RM Financial Services provide?
We provide tailored financing solutions to our clients. All of our loans are secured by motor cars, whether classic cars or modern supercars, and are mostly in the form of term loans or short-term advances against a client’s consignments with RM Sotheby’s.
How much can I borrow against my motor cars?
The loan amount is determined as a percentage of the estimated value of the collateral (as advised by the relevant RM Sotheby’s Car Specialists). Generally, we lend about 50–60% of the estimated value of the motor car proposed as collateral, and we typically focus on loan amounts above US$200,000.
Do I have to consign property to RM Sotheby’s to get a loan from RM Financial Services?
No, not at all. While we provide advances against auction and private sale consignments for RM Sotheby’s clients, this is not a requirement. In fact, most of the loans provided by RM Financial Services are term loans with no commitment to sell any motor car with RM Sotheby’s.
What is the advantage of borrowing from RM Financial Services as opposed to traditional lenders?
We have in-depth knowledge of the international collector car market with a world-class team of Car Specialists, allowing us to assess each car and/or collection and devise truly bespoke financing solutions, particularly for important, high-value motor cars that are typically outside the scope of traditional lending institutions. Our unparalleled market expertise and unique underwriting approach enable us to offer loans discreetly and expeditiously. Unlike conventional lenders, we are focused primarily on your motor car and less on your financial circumstances. This significantly reduces the amount of information needed from you to process the loan and allows us to fund the transactions on a timetable that traditional financial institutions would have difficulty matching.
How long will the loan process take?
We aim to make funds available to our clients within ten (10) days after deal terms are agreed. Processing times depend on jurisdictions and clearance of any existing liens on the collateral and inspection of motor car(s) as needed.
Who will appraise my car? How much will you charge me for the appraisal?
RM Sotheby’s Car Specialists and in-house USPAP-compliant appraisers produce comprehensive appraisal reports by considering the quality, condition, provenance, and current market for each motor car. We charge our clients approximately $500-$1,000 per vehicle (depending on the type of car and level of research required) for the appraisal of the proposed collateral.
Who is responsible for insurance?
The client is responsible for maintaining insurance coverage on the motor car(s) pledged as collateral. RM Financial Services must be named as an additional insured party and loss payee (to the extent of its interest in the collateral) under the borrower’s insurance policy.
How long is the term of the loan?
Generally, our loans are structured for twelve (12) months and tend to be renewed at maturity.
What is the first step in acquiring a loan from RM Financial Services?
We first ask our prospective clients to provide us with details on the motor car(s) intended for collateral and the amount of borrowing needed. Details of motor cars should include full descriptions, history and records, and high-resolution images so that our specialists may produce a more accurate initial valuation of the motor car. Our experts generally need to physically inspect the motor car prior to closing, but in most cases, we can provide preliminary valuation and financing terms based on basic information and high-resolution photographs.
What documentation do I need to provide to RM Financial Services to process the loan?
As our underwriting and diligence focus mostly on the motor car(s), we require documents that allow us to verify the provenance and legal ownership for the motor car(s) proposed as collateral. The related proof of ownership is usually in the form of a title or a Bill of Sale. To the extent the proposed borrower is a corporate entity, legal documents establishing the authorization and existence will be required for such corporate borrowing.
Does the collateral need to be delivered to RM Financial Services in order to obtain a loan?
This will depend on each circumstance and jurisdiction in which loans are underwritten and the car(s) is/are registered. In certain jurisdictions, we may allow the client to remain in possession of the pledged motor car, but the option may not be available in other locations and under varying circumstances.
What is the best way to contact RM Financial Services?
An RM Financial Services expert can be reached by emailing email@example.com.