You need to use a registered auctioneer when buying or selling anything by auction — unless it's an internet auction such as TradeMe.
An auction is a process whereby property of any kind, including goods, services and interests in land, is offered for sale by an auctioneer on behalf of a vendor. Bids are placed in real time, and the property is sold when the auctioneer indicates.
Any goods or services sold by auction are covered by the Auctioneers Act — for example, antiques, art, cars and livestock. However, the Act doesn’t cover internet auctions that result in a contract of sale directly between the winning bidder and the seller, such as Trade Me auctions.
Auctioneers Act 2013(external link)
More consumer information
The Consumer Protection and Commerce Commission websites have more information about your rights and obligations, and how to stay safe with auctions.
Consumer Protection website — Auctions(external link)
Commerce Commission New Zealand — Selling at auction(external link)
Consumer Protection website — Fair Trading Act(external link)
Checking whether an auctioneer is registered
You can search the register of auctioneers to check if an auctioneer is registered.
If you can’t find an auctioneer’s name on the register, email us or call our service centre.