If you have any questions about buying or selling your classic car use our FAQs below.

Buyer questions Seller questions

Common buyer questions

Bidders have to be registered and have a completed bidding profile which includes an identification check using a credit card, this protects everyone from dreamers and tyre-kickers. No charges can be made against your card without your authorisation.

Zero, zilch, nada - you pay what you bid. There is no buyers commission or any hidden charges.

We never disclose a vehicle’s reserve however we do tell you when a bid is close or has exceeded it so you know when bidding that little bit extra might make the sale. As soon as the reserve is reached then the vendor is obliged to sell. It is also our policy to always have the reserve set outside the estimate band - a scenario we can successfully run with our low fees.

Look for the green “Contact Seller” button at the top of every auction. That will let you send a message directly to the seller. If you receive no answer, please contact us directly.

We always strongly recommend viewing any car, they can be complicated beasts. However we know it is not always possible to fit a visit into your diary, so we aim to write the most comprehensive listings on the web, and offer the opportunity to ask any questions of the seller during the auction. If visiting is impossible, why not ask the seller to see if they can use his smartphone on a live video (such as Facetime or WhatApp) while you direct them where to go?.

If you have a question about anything to do with the vehicle, please use the Contact Seller button to ask away. Remember to check all of the photos and text as we try to cover as many things as possible in the listing.

Yes, please do. Our comments are designed to allow the community to have a discussion about the vehicle and assist both the potential buyers and the seller.

There isn’t really an advantage as we have eradicated last-second sniping - if anyone bids in the last 2 minutes of an auction we extend the sale by 2 minutes to allow any remaining bidders to continue to participate, this repeats until all bidding is complete. This makes it fairer to all buyers and sellers. In addition our Automatic Bidding allows bidders to place their maximum bid hours or days before auction end, confident in knowing that our software will keep them in the lead up to their maximum.

The text is written by The Market, not by the seller. It is carefully written after discussions, photos and documents from the seller and other public sources. Whilst we try to cross-examine as much as possible, and intend that we are completely transparent with the description, please ensure you are happy with the vehicle’s condition. Ultimately the seller is responsible for the description, please ask any questions or clarifications to be in your mind.

We do not always inspect the vehicles (but make it very clear when we have), we rely on comprehensive photo galleries, and will ask the seller to provide more photos of specific areas if they are missing pre-auction. We are able to take a keen look at Concierge cars when they are delivered to us, but like all other auctions, we do not conduct a professional inspection.

By clicking the Watch Auction button (or Star icon) on a Preview listing, you will receive an email as soon as that auction goes Live.

Concierge is a premium service we offer to sellers which provides our professional photography plus storage of the car at our HQ in South Oxfordshire for viewings.

The answer is a simple no! By submitting a winning bid, you are making a legal purchase commitment (same as a physical auction). Remember, a winning bid results in a 6% non-refundable deposit being placed

We take our reputation very seriously and use TRUSTPILOT for independent reviews. We intend to provide a transparent commercial experience and are aiming at enthusiasts who would like to be treated in the same way as they treat others. If a seller, or buyer, drops below these standards repeatedly, we will ask them to leave. But remember, we are not all complete experts, neither are we working with brand new vehicles.

2 options: you can bid in individual increments as others outbid you. For every bid, and every time you are outbid, you will receive an email from us immediately (please check your spam folder if you can’t see it).

Or with our Automatic Bidding, it couldn’t be easier. At any time in the auction, simply enter the maximum amount you would like to bid. If it’s higher than other bids, you become the high bidder. Our systems will then bid on your behalf – enough to keep you in the lead, but only incrementing up to your maximum limit. If someone does outbid you, we'll let you know by email so you can decide if you want to increase your maximum bid.

£100 per bid up to £10,000

£250 per bid up to £25,000 and finally

£500 per bid above £25,000.

This will occur if someone has previously placed a maximum bid that is higher than your new bid. If you match another previously-placed bid, the one placed first will be the lead bidder.

If a bid is received within the last two minutes of the auction, the countdown is reset to two minutes. This allows buyers to consider making further bids without panic! All further bids will reset the two-minute countdown. The auction ends when there have been no bids for two minutes.

If you register or add your email to our distribution list, we only send a simple weekly email which lists new auctions. We never use it for other purposes or allow it to be used by third-parties.

At the end of the auction, if you are the winning bidder you will be asked to pay a 6% deposit. Once this is done then you should arrange pickup of the vehicle directly with the seller within seven days and agree payment of the remaining 94% via a method you both agree on.

The 6% deposit is collected by The Market, we can accept Visa, Mastercard, Amex or direct bank payments. The remaining 94% is paid directly to the seller in a mutually convenient method. We recommend a bank-to-bank transfer, and please remember that most sellers & buyers will be uncomfortable dealing with large quantities of cash.

If an auction finishes below reserve, we will contact the top bidder and try to complete a purchase. If you would like to be included in this, please remain top bidder.

In placing your highest bid, you are legally committing to buy the vehicle. We provide very comprehensive photos and description of all parts of the car (good and bad), plus we offer the opportunity to ask any further questions and to visit during the auction. Please ensure before bidding that you are happy with your understanding of the vehicle’s condition. If after all this, you find the car has significant issues that were not mentioned and has been misrepresented, such as major panel damage or an inability to change gear, then we will look into it on a case-by-case basis.

Yes, absolutely, just contact us to allow us to provide you with a quote for international shipping, or get an instant online quote for UK shipping from our partners. We can provide professional car storage through our partner Thames Valley Car Storage and other.

Yes, Classic & Sportscar Finance is our agreed finance partner. Please contact them prior to bidding – they can usually arrange the finance within 24 hours. Once the finance is approved, please bid as normal.

You can view our terms & conditions here. If there are any further questions, please contact us at any time by email (hello@themarket.com) or phone 01865 521088.

Common seller questions

Nothing, Zilch, Nada. We do not charge for listing any car.

We charge only 5% + VAT commission (inc VAT) on a successful sale (minimum £500 + VAT). Remember that we have no buyer’s commission which means that the seller receives 94% of the buyer’s ‘cheque’. Note that in physical auctions bidders will only bid up to around 85% of their limit as they know they have buyer’s fees to add. This is market-leading and a huge difference compared to established auction houses, see how much you save by using our commission calculator. (For example, if your car auctions for £20k, we would return you at least £3,000 more compared to other auction houses)

No. We create the most comprehensive and transparent listings on the web, and have worked hard to ensure the process is as smooth as possible. And our sales ratio is at least as good as established auction houses.

Yes, but it can only be successful if buyers can determine a vehicle’s true condition, and trust their judgement. Our results show that we are providing that kind of on-line experience.

Of course, no auction house can guarantee the highest prices. However, please take a look at the results in our Previous Auctions and you will see some impressive results including a number of UK auction-record prices. Our in-house technology experience and expertise ensure that all of our auction cars are marketed much further and better than those of any other auction house. The Market effectively advertises your vehicle to thousands upon thousands through classic car websites, our massive international database and mailing list and significant social media presence. Plus our comprehensive and content-rich listings give everyone the full picture, making them keen to bid wherever they live. And on top of all that, our extremely low fees all but guarantee we return more money to sellers.

We work with all of our sellers to create professional listings using the Patina platform to allow the full vehicle history to be available online for review with unlimited photos, videos and documents. Our professional writers will work with you to find out more about your vehicle so they are able to create a listing that ensures its story is told in the best possible way.

We do not usually visit, we use the power of modern IT to gain a deep appreciation of a car’s condition from extensive photography. We are happy to visit where other techniques are not helpful.

We have created a highly efficient process to generate an auction listing. All we ask is for over 75 photos of the car, giving the buyers all they need to make an informed decision. We ask for some general shots, and then loads of detail shots showing the good and not-so-good bits of your vehicle. There is no limit to the photos, we can accommodate hundreds if you are still taking informative photos!

Yes please. Individually photographing the vehicle’s documents is very important to buyers and makes a great difference to the auction price achieved. We are looking for any recent invoices, plus historical servicing/service books, MOT’s, and others that tell a story – it is not essential to include receipts for bulbs bought a decade ago!

A good Gallery makes a huge difference to our auctions. It informs more buyers, it spreads the geographical reach of your vehicle (many of our cars are bought/sold from opposite ends of the country just because of the photos), and it prevents buyers from wasting your time post-auction.

Good photography is essential to a good result. We recommend using one of a large number of professional photographers that we have around the country, or you can consider our Concierge service – see next question. The photographers usually cost around £125 - £150 per car, something we always know you will immediately recuperate with stronger bidding.

You should be prepared to have requests to view your car, it can make a big difference to some buyers. However we have noticed that our extensive photo galleries result in fewer viewings, and that those viewings are serious rather than tyre-kickers.

Our Concierge service means that we do all the photography of the car and its documents using a professional photographer, we host all viewings for potential buyers, we complete handover and we store your car for the duration. The cost is only £300 (plus VAT). It is a turn-key service for the best results and lease personal hassle. Delivery to us in South Oxfordshire is not included, but we have a number of trusted transport companies who can provide a quotation. If you need the car cleaned, we know suppliers who can provide whatever you need.

We ask one of our team of professional writers to speak with you to learn everything about the vehicle and then create the independent description in conjunction with the Gallery.

Yes. We publish the most comprehensive auction listings in the business. The vehicles are obviously not factory-fresh, and no-one would expect them to be perfect. If we ignored the faults, buyers would not have the confidence to bid; by describing the faults and photographing the blemishes, we know that we actually achieve higher auction prices. Every vehicle will have faults, and everything has a price; by being open, we ensure that both buyers and sellers know what they are dealing with.

Many of our auctions are sold without the buyer having an opportunity to view. If the buyer then visits to pick the car up and finds the vehicle significantly mis-described, they will be seriously dissatisfied. This is the only scenario where we would consider returning their initial purchase deposit and cancelling the sale. We would not accept any further vehicles from sellers who repeatedly mis-describe.

All auctions have a ‘Contact Seller’ button which allows the buyer to contact the seller directly, asking questions and organising viewings. Please keep an eye on your email, and on the Comments section where buyers may also ask questions. Positive interaction here always helps generate good results.

We can set up an auction in just a few days, and the auctions are usually set for around 7 days. There are no hard deadlines though, we run auctions every week and are ready when you are.

Our results show that we have incorporated a number of techniques that ensure time-wasters are removed from the process: 1. All bidders have to register with credit-card details, 2. Bidders can ask questions and view the car throughout the auction, 3. winning bidders have to submit a deposit of 6% at auction end, 4. our comprehensive listings remove the likelihood of a buyer walking away because a vehicle is mis-described, 5. the accounts of disreputable buyers and sellers are closed.

We work with sellers to set reasonable reserves, and avoid vehicles with reserves that are unrealistic. Once a reserve is close to being met, or has been met then we make it clear on the auction listing. We generally cannot apply a reserve to any vehicle expected to reach under £7000.

It’s common in online auctions for some buyers to use software to enter a bid in the very last seconds of the auction to outbid others without giving them a chance to respond. If a bid is placed during the last 2 minutes of an auction on The Market, we extend the auction by another 2 minutes. This gives everyone a chance to place their bids and gives sellers a chance to sell to the true high bidder.

Once the auction closes the winning bidder will be asked to place a 6% deposit via The Market platform. The remaining 94% will be settled directly between you and the buyer via a method that you both agree on.

If at auction end the reserve has not met then the auction will end with the vehicle unsold. We will try to make contact with the highest bidder to see if we can facilitate a deal and may carry on marketing with a 'buy it now' price for a limited period. If the vehicle remains unsold and is stored with ourselves then we will request that it is collected.

You can view our terms & conditions here.

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