Information for Buyers

  • Can I withdraw a bid?
    No. Bidding is binding. The outcome of the auction depends on the bidding, so if you place a bid and end up being the highest bidder you are legally responsible to pay for the item. This applies even if you made the bid in error or changed your mind.
  • Yes. If you have submitted an amount as your maximum bid and then wish to reduce it, enter your reduced maximum bid amount in the box where you would normally place your bid. You will need to make sure that the reduced amount meets a bidding increment and that it is more than or equal to the current bid.
  • If a bid is placed in the final five minutes before a lot closes in an auction, the bidding period for the lot is extended by a further five minutes. This continues until a full five minutes has elapsed without another bid having been placed.
  • We do not, and cannot, sell any ivory products at all (including pre and post 1990 ivory) even tiny amounts used in larger items (e.g. handles or stringing in furniture).
  • Yes, you may enter a ‘maximum’ bid. This is the most you are willing to pay for an item. Our bidding platform will then bid intelligently for you, against any other competitors, bidding only enough for you to stay in the lead. Your maximum bid amount remains totally confidential, even Hotlotz does not know what it is.
  • Starting from the published end time of an auction, lots close one minute apart in lot number order. For example, if Lot 1 is to close at 6.00pm, Lot 15 would close at 6.14pm. There is an exception for lots impacted by Auto-Extended Bidding.
  • The opening bid amount (also the item’s ‘reserve’) is the lowest price that the item can be bought for in the auction. The estimate (low to high) shows the price range in which we think the item will likely sell. Estimates are based on a range of factors including our examination of the item, its provenance and condition, and recent auction records for comparable items.
  • If you are unable to view in person or you would like addition information about an item, we can schedule a video call with you or provide you with a written condition report. We can also email additional photos or video on request. The catalogue page for each lot also includes an option to ‘ask a question’. If you use this function it will send an email to the saleroom. Please try to make additional information requests in good time. We may not be able to reply to requests sent on the day of the auction.
  • Every item is on view in the Hotlotz saleroom, while it is open for bidding in an auction catalogue or in the marketplace, unless there is a note to the contrary in the catalogue notes, or the item is offered for sale in a ‘Home Contents’ auction when viewing takes place at the property.
  • No. We do our best to appraise and catalogue the items, but they are sold ‘as is’. We strongly recommend that you inspect items, ask for more information if needed and make your own assessment before bidding.
  • We charge a buyer’s premium of 30% on top of the closing bid (or ‘winning bid’ or ‘hammer price’) amount for auction items. This includes GST. No buyer's premium applies for marketplace sales as prices are fixed amounts. There may be other fees like storage charges for delays in items being collected. Any third party transport we arrange for you is at cost with no mark-up by us.
  • We accept Mastercard, Visa and American Express, PayNow and bank transfers. A fee of 2.73% inc. GST is applied to card payments (only).
  • No. Our doors are open during our working hours and no appointment is necessary for viewings in the saleroom. Please check the auction catalogue for particular auction viewing dates and any other information about viewings.
  • We generally hold at least one auction a week. They typically close on a Sunday evening from 6.00pm Singapore time. You can see our current and upcoming auctions on the Auctions page of our website. The auction catalogue is usually available at least 10 days prior to the auction. Please check the auction catalogue for the auction closing date and time.
  • Please see the 'What We Sell' page of our website. We sell a wide range of item categories that include Asian Ceramics, Interiors & Collectibles, Peranakan Works of Art, Fine Jewellery, Fine Art, and Fine Wine.
  • We are an online only auction house. To bid on an item you see in our online auction catalogue, you need to have a Hotlotz account and then register for each auction you want to bid in (both can be done through our website). If you are the winning bidder, the item is yours. You need to pay the hammer price and buyer's premium. Alternatively, you can buy items for a fixed price in our marketplace.
  • Auction catalogues are usually published on our website at least 10 days before the closing date for the auction. Please see the Auctions page of our website.
  • Our sellers range from individuals to collectors, dealers, corporates, administrators estates and others. We do not identify our sellers, unless they have specifically agreed what we may do so such as in a private collection sale of a named individual.
  • Once you have a Hotlotz account and registered to bid for an auction, enter the next bid amount which is necessary and click ‘bid’. You will be notified if you are the highest bidder or if you get outbid. Alternatively, you can set a maximum bid amount you are willing to pay.
  • Some unsold items may be available in our fixed-price marketplace. For other unsold items it may still be possible to buy them if the seller is interested - please get in touch.
  • It is not possible to return or refund items, including where you change your mind or decide you do not want the item. Items are sold 'as is' with any issues or imperfections, hence we make them available for viewing or can provide further information. If there are issues as a result of our cataloguing, please get in touch with us.
  • We are an online only auction house. To bid on an item you see in our online auction catalogue, you need to have a Hotlotz account and then register for each auction you want to bid in (both can be done through our website). If you are the winning bidder, the item is yours. You need to pay the hammer price and buyer's premium. Alternatively, you can buy items for a fixed price in our marketplace.
  • How soon do I need items I have bought to be collected?
    We ask that you do so within 7 days. We may charge storage fees if items are not collected in good time. Please contact the saleroom if you need help organising shipping.
  • We can provide you with a quote from our trusted transport companies if needed (and typically we just need the full address including post code). We can try to help you with any collection/drop-off or transportation arranged by you, but please give us as much notice as possible of anything needed.
  • Yes. Our trusted transport companies can ship internationally if needed.
  • Many buyers collect their items in person or arrange their own collection or transportation. Also, delivery costs would vary greatly because of the size of items or delivery location. Our preference is to give buyers the choice, rather than effectively charging everyone something for delivery within our pricing.
  • Is requesting an appraisal from Hotlotz, including using the ‘Sell With Us’ service, free of charge and with no obligation?
    Yes. If you are considering selling with us and it is an item we think appropriate for sale at Hotlotz, our appraisals, estimates and valuations are free of charge and with no obligation to sell with us. We also do standalone professional valuation work at charge.
  • After submitting items for review using ‘Sell With Us’, you will receive an email to confirm we have received your request. Our valuers will then review your submission and inform you by email if your item is suitable for sale at Hotlotz or not and any next steps. This process usually takes between one and two weeks.
  • Please send us an introductory email outlining your circumstances for our consideration. Appraisers with responsibility for special projects, including Private Collection & Estate Sales, will then contact you.
  • Please send us an introductory email outlining your circumstances for our consideration. Appraisers with responsibility for special projects, including Home Contents sales, will then contact you.
  • No. We can only work for you on a consignment basis, meaning we try to sell the item on your behalf. The item remains yours until we sell it.
  • First, just get in touch about what you may want to sell - either by phone (+65) 6254 7616 or email at hello@hotlotz.com, or using the 'sell with us' function for smaller numbers of items. Once we have appraised your items, we may send you a sales contract to review and e-sign. It will record things like the relevant auction, the estimate, the opening bid, our seller’s commission and fees, and your instructions if the item is unsold.
  • Please give us as much information as possible. As well as a description, include any relevant information you have such as the condition, dimensions, weight, material, medium, maker, artist, provenance, history, ancillary items, etc. If you have any paperwork (like receipts, certificates, etc.) do let us know. Clear colour photos are also useful, front, back and of any relevant detail such as signature, maker's mark or any damage.
  • We will advise if/when we need to inspect your items for an appraisal. Please do not send us items, or bring in items for appraisal or consignment, before being requested to do so or confirming with us first.
  • Yes. We typically take items into our Singapore saleroom so that they can be inspected, catalogued, photographed and made available for viewing by buyers while the auction catalogue is online or in the marketplace. We will advise you if/when we need to do so.
  • Yes. We are generally happy to come to you. It may depend on an initial assessment of your item(s) including the number and nature of them.
  • As we do not have a corporate WhatsApp account at this stage, our preference is for you to send any information by email. Please do discuss this with us if needed and we will try to be of assistance.
  • These can still be sold in auction, subject to our appraisal, as most secondary items have at least some wear and tear. We detail condition as part of our cataloguing.
  • Various aspects will affect the item's value, such as auction records for similar items, quality, condition, size, weight, provenance, rarity, artist or maker, exhibition and publication history, certification, paperwork, ancillary items, etc.
  • It will vary by individual item and what someone is prepared to pay for it. We can provide you with a free appraisal and valuation for any items we typically sell.
  • Yes. We will agree with you an 'opening bid' or reserve amount, which is the minimum price at which we can sell an item. This will be recorded in your Sales Contract. It is better to set a lower opening bid amount in order to drive interest and competition for the item, which will increase the sale price.
  • Estimates are based on the experience of our valuations team and what we believe the item will sell for at auction. They also take into account auction records for similar items and factors including condition, rarity, certification and available provenance.
  • Auction pricing is based on prices achieved at auction, not what the item might fetch in a retail environment (which might be considerably higher). We tend to be conservative about auction pricing, both to drive interest and competition for the item and because we would rather under promise and over deliver.
  • Before an item can be included in an auction, it needs to be appraised, catalogued and a Sales Contract prepared and agreed. The Sales Contract will also specify the auction the item will appear in, based on the most appropriate category of auction and our auction calendar. As we generally work on commission, it's in our interests to list and sell your item as soon as possible.
  • When I try to register for an auction or place a bid, I am presented with an ‘Invalid phone number format’ error. How do I fix this?
    This error occurs when there is no number (or an invalid number) in your Hotlotz account. To check this visit this link (https://www.hotlotz.com/account/profile) and click ‘MANAGE’ under your personal details to edit them. If a phone number has been entered, sometimes re-entering the country code and number can fix the error. If you still receive the error after following the above steps, reach out to help@hotlotz.com.
  • Firstly, check your spam/junk folder as there is a good chance the email could end up there. If it isn’t there then you can send a request to help@hotlotz.com.
  • Send your issue/question to help@hotlotz.com. Please include your phone number so our IT support can call you back.
  • Is Hotlotz registered for Goods and Services Tax (GST) in Singapore?
    Yes, Hotlotz has been GST registered since January 2021. Our GST registration number is 201524698M.
  • Yes. We are required in Singapore to charge GST on the Seller’s Commission and any other miscellaneous charges like Insurance Fees. The GST treatment will be shown clearly on your 'Settlement Statement'.
  • We are required in Singapore to charge GST on the Buyer's Premium. Our Buyer’s Premium of 30% on top of the closing bid (or ‘Winning Bid’ or ‘Hammer Price’) amount for auction sales includes the GST.
  • GST will be zero rated for buyers of goods bought in auction who are non-resident in Singapore, provided Hotlotz manages the export process and the export is carried out within 60 days of the auction date. In any other export scenario GST will be applied. Buyers of goods bought in auction who have indicated in their Hotlotz account that their country of residence is not Singapore will be contacted after the sale by Hotlotz client services to discuss export of their goods.
  • The price of items in the marketplace is fixed and inclusive of GST.
  • Yes, you have to pay a GST inclusive price for all items in the marketplace.. Hotlotz is exploring participation in an electronic ‘Tourist Refund Scheme’. This will enable a tourist who makes a purchase from Hotlotz and departs with the goods from Singapore via Changi International Airport or Seletar Airport, to be eligible to claim a GST refund under the scheme.
  • Your bid amount includes the GST. It is a requirement for us in Singapore to have all pricing inclusive of GST. Accordingly, all estimates, opening bid amounts, bidding increments, closing bids (or ‘winning bid’ or the ‘hammer price’) and marketplace prices that are displayed or quoted in any correspondence are always inclusive of GST.
  • Yes. GST can only be zero-rated for auction items if Hotlotz manages the export process.
  • Regardless of where a buyer is located, GST can only be zero-rated for auction items if Hotlotz manages the export process for the items and the export is carried out within 60 days of the auction date.
  • Please let us know. If your Hotlotz account shows you are non-resident, you will be contacted after the auction anyway. You will be asked to confirm that you are non-resident and provide an overseas shipping address. You will also be asked to instruct Hotlotz to manage the export process on your behalf, and for it to take place within 60 days of the auction closing date. If you agree, Hotlotz will send an email with a link to a zero-rated GST invoice. Payment of that invoice is then due immediately.
  • Yes. It is a requirement for us in Singapore. It is also a requirement for us to ensure the closing bid (or ‘Winning Bid’ or the ‘Hammer Price’) amount or marketplace price includes the GST. We then pay IRAS the GST paid by the buyer. For sellers, the hammer price on settlement statements is then shown as exclusive of GST which may be payable by the buyer.
  • Can I withdraw an item from sale after I have approved my sales contract?
    Yes, but you will be charged a withdrawal fee of $60 inc. GST as recorded in the sales contract in your dashboard. This fee will be invoiced and must be paid before you collect your item.
  • What happens if an item does not sell will be agreed with you in your sales contract. We usually list items for one auction only. If items are unsold, if you wish we can offer them for a fixed price in the marketplace.
  • No, your sales contract states that you grant us exclusivity whilst an item is in auction or on sale in our Marketplace. If we discover your item on sale elsewhere we will withdraw it from sale and you will be invoiced for a withdrawal fee.
  • Yes, we charge a minimum seller’s commission fee of $45 inc. GST per item sold. This is outlined in your sales contract.
  • The price paid by the winning bidder for a lot (the 'hammer price') must be inclusive of the GST the winning bidder may have to pay. Price display rules in Singapore require it of us. We then pay any GST to IRAS. So when we settle to the seller, we must first remove any GST amount (we divide the hammer price inclusive of GST by 1.09). Thereafter, the hammer price on settlement statements for sellers is shown as exclusive of any GST.
  • Seller's commission and insurance fees are always calculated from the hammer price exclusive of any GST which may be payable by the buyer. Commissions and fees are themselves also subject to GST payable by the seller.
  • No, it will not change the amount that you are settled. We can remove - or ‘zero rate’ - the GST for an auction buyer who is not a resident of Singapore provided export criteria stipulated by the IRAS are met. In short, Hotlotz must manage the export and it must take place within 60 days of the auction sale date. Whether such GST is payable or not affects the buyer, but not the seller or the amount settled to the seller. GST charged on our commissions and fees can never be zero-rated.
  • The day after the auction closing date, you will receive an automated ‘Consignment Update’ email. This will list the item(s) sold and the hammer price(s), inclusive of GST, achieved. You can also check the status of your consigned items at any time in the overview section of your Hotlotz account.
  • Payments (or settlements) usually take place within 21 days of the auction’s closing date. Settlements are made by bank transfer into your nominated bank account. Please note that you are responsible for accurately recording your bank account details in your online Hotlotz account dashboard. You will receive a ‘Settlement Statement’ by automated email confirming that the transfer has taken place. A copy of the statement will also be filed in your online dashboard (Simply log in and go to My Account; Paperwork; Settlement Statements).
  • If your settlement is delayed it is usually because we are waiting for a late payment from a buyer. We have very robust processes in place to ensure that settlements are made in a timely manner but occasionally buyers can be slow to pay their invoices. Buyers who renege on purchases are extremely uncommon as they are banned from future bidding with us and our global platform partner, the-saleroom.com. This acts as a deterrent. We never dispatch items without receiving a cleared payment. In the unlikely event that any buyer reneges on a sale we will offer the item to the underbidder, if one exists.
  • We charge seller's commission, only once an item sells. The rate is either agreed with you for auctions (and recorded in your sales contract), 21.8% inc. GST for marketplace sales, or a minimum of $45 inc. GST in all cases. We apply it per lot, which might have one or more items. Other fees may apply, such as an insurance fee of 1.64% inc. GST or a withdrawal fee of $60 inc. GST. Any third party transport we arrange for you is at cost with no mark-up by us.
  • Please see the 'What We Sell' page of our website. We sell a wide range of item categories that include Asian Ceramics, Interiors & Collectibles, Peranakan Works of Art, Fine Jewellery, Fine Art, and Fine Wine.
  • We will provide you with a receipt for any items in our possession. These are kept at our saleroom, which has high standards of security and we provide insurance (covered by our Insurance Fee) unless you do so and provide us with a liability waiver.
  • All of our auctions take place using an industry-leading platform which reaches bidders in 171 countries. We also use electronic direct mail and platforms such as Google, Facebook and Instagram. In addition, we adopt specific marketing campaigns for particular auctions.

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