How to Buy at Auction

Everyone is welcomed to Weschler's auctions.

The public has long harbored the mistaken perception that auctions were strictly an arena for dealers and the wealthy. However, today the auction house is an exciting and viable resource where the novice and seasoned buyer alike can explore an unequaled selection of items at all price levels under one roof.

Below are guidelines to further acquaint you with buying at auction.

Prior to the auction

You will find the excitement of a successful bid, at your desired price, is incomparable. Once you have successfully bid, all that is left to do is settle your account and take your purchases home. Of course, if you have purchased a large item, the auction house will assist you in making appropriate transportation arrangements. It has become that simple for you to take advantage of the many benefits of buying at auction. Below are guidelines to further acquaint you with buying at auction.


Printed auction catalogues for the Capital Collections auctions contain detailed descriptions of the property being offered, the photograph(s) and the pre-sale estimate for each lot. Estimates are intended as a guide and should not be considered a prediction of the selling price.

The catalogues are available approximately two weeks prior to the auction and can be mailed via USPS priority mail for $30. Catalogues can also be mailed overseas at a cost of $55.

Annual catalogue subscriptions are available and additional information may be obtained by contacting Linda Niehaus at (202) 628-1281 or by submitting the below catalogue subscription form:

Download and Complete the Catalogue Subscription form.

For Metro auctions, a lot listing is available every Friday afternoon on our website. Not all items are photographed for the Metro auctions; however, we do highlight a selection of the items to be offered as well as post an online video on our company Facebook page.


The pre-sale exhibition, or preview, gives you an opportunity to examine items prior to the auction that you are interested in and is open to the public at no charge. You are encouraged to attend the exhibit and to closely examine all lots of interest to you. Have questions? Weschler's staff will gladly assist you regarding the quality, condition, provenance, and value of any piece if requested. Because all property is sold “as is” in accordance with the Conditions of Sale, it is important to request a Condition Report if you cannot attend the exhibit. Weschler's nor the consignor make any express or implied warranty or representation as to the condition of any lot offered for sale and no statement made at any time, whether oral or written, shall constitute such a warranty or representation.

Exhibits are held for the Capital Collections auctions the Saturday preceding the sale from 9 am to Noon; Sunday, from 11 am to 3 pm; Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, from 10 am to 5 pm, and Thursday, from 10 am to 2 pm.

Exhibits are held for the Metro auctions on Mondays from 9am to 5pm. In addition, Saturday previews will be held from 9am to 12pam starting the weekend after Labor Day up to the weekend prior to Memorial Day.


Bidding in Person

Clients intending to bid in person must register during exhibition or on the day of the auction and a bidder number will be assigned at that time. Bidders already registered with an annual Weschler's bidding number need not re-register for each sale. Once the sale begins, the auctioneer will announce each lot in numerical order as listed in the catalogue and then open the bidding. To place a bid, simply raise your paddle for the auctioneer to recognize your bid. If no one tops your bid, the auctioneer will state that the item is sold, then announce the hammer price and your paddle number.

Absentee Bidding

If you are unable to attend a Capital Collections or Metro auction, you may leave an absentee bid. This is a confidential, written maximum price for the lot or lots in which you are interested. It is executed by the auctioneer, on your behalf, in competition with the gallery audience. Whenever possible, the auctioneer will acquire the lot for less than your maximum bid.

You may submit absentee bids to Weschler's by agreeing to the Terms & Conditions and completing the correct bid form below.

Weschler's Bid Form.

Telephone Bidding

Additionally you may participate by telephone in the Capital Collections auctions through advance, written notification to the gallery that indicates the lot or lots on which you wish to bid. Our facilities for telephone bidding are somewhat limited so it is strongly recommended that you make arrangements at least 24 hours in advance. Please contact Linda Niehaus at (202) 628-1281 for specific information on telephone bids or complete the below bid form.

Capital Collections Telephone & Absentee Bid Form.

Each bidder will be assigned a bidding number before bids can be recognized. Bidding number registration will be available during exhibition hours and during the auction at our offices. Bidders already registered with an annual Weschler's bidding number need not re-register for each sale.

Weschler's Live! Online Bidding

In partnership with Invaluable, AuctionZip and eBay, Click the “Register to Bid” button on the live auction schedule to register for online bidding in an auction or watch a live sale.

See each lot in real time, and press the “bid now” button to send a bid when you're ready to participate!

Just interested in following the action? Just click the “Happening Now” button to follow the auction in progress. You don't need to register or log in to watch a live sale.

Bidding Increments

The auctioneer generally advances the bidding in the following incremental amounts; however, it is auctioneer's discretion:

$100-499 $25 increments
$500-999 $50 increments
$1,000-1,999 $100 increments
$2,000-4,999 $200 increments
$5,000-10,000 $500 increments
$10,000+ auctioneer's discretion


Weschler's will send you an emailed PDF of your invoice directly after the sale. If your email address is not on file, an invoice will be mailed by the next business day by first class mail.

Purchaser Payments

Successful bidders are requested to make total payment for purchases by cash, wire transfer, money order, cashier's check, pre-approved check and Visa or MasterCard on the day of sale.

Buyers not known to Weschler's and planning to pay with a personal or business check are required to supply us a bank letter of credit prior to the auction. If such arrangements are not made prior to the auction, purchases will be held by Weschler's until the check has cleared our bank.

Make your check, cashier's check, money order payable to: Weschler's.

Mail to:

40 West Gude Drive Ste 100
Rockville MD 20852

Bank Wire Transfer
We offer direct bank-to-bank transfers for large transactions. Please contact our offices for details.

Please note:  A buyer's premium and any applicable sales tax will be added to all Weschler's auction purchases.

Buyer's Premium

A premium equal to 22%* of the successful bid price up to and including $100,000, 20% of the successful bid price $100,001-$500,000, and 18% of the successful bid price over $500,000 will be added thereto and is payable by the purchaser as part of the total purchase price. *Discount for Cash, Wire Transfer or Local and/or Approved Checks.

In addition, online purchasers through Invaluable, Auctionzip or Weschler’s Infinite Bidding are charged an additional premium of 3% of the hammer price.

All property must be paid for and removed from the gallery within one week following the Capital Collections auction.

All property must be paid for and removed within one business day following the Metro auction.

Please Note:

Maryland Sales Tax is computed on the total purchase price. The purchaser will be required to pay the Sales Tax unless: the property purchased is for resale and a valid Resale Tax number is presented to Weschler's business office at the time of payment, and the sales price is $200 or more; (ii) the sales price of precious metal bullion or coins is greater than $1000; or (iii) the property is being shipped to a buyer located outside the state of Maryland by an ICC/USDOT licensed shipper/carrier. On any cash transactions or series of transactions exceeding $10,000, Treasury Form 8300 will be filed.

Removal of Property

All purchases should be paid for and removed the day of sale, or no later than one week post sale for Capital Collections auctions and no later than one day post sale for Metro & Metro Online auctions.

For all auction purchases, shipping is the responsibility of the buyer. Once the invoice has been paid, Weschler's will advise you on the best way to ship your items, and will help arrange for shipping quotes. In order to provide you with a quote, the shipper will need to know your name as listed on your invoice, the sale name, date, and lot numbers of your items, as well as general information about the type of items you need to ship. Payment for shipping services is due directly to the shipper. Weschler's assumes no responsibility for the acts or omissions of carriers or packers whether or not they are recommended by us.

Items left unclaimed for more than one week after the sale (may be subject to additional storage and handling fees. See the Conditions of Sale for more details.

If a third party is shipping your auction purchase, then you will need to provide Weschler's with written authorization.

Click here for the list of recommended shippers.

Any additional shipping inquiries, please contact our business office at (202) 628-1281 or by email at

*Weschler's offers in-house shipping only for jewelry purchased at auction and shipped within the United States.