Understand These Terms to Participate Effectively in An Auction

There are many terms related to auctions you need to know before buying anything at the auction house. These are especially important for those looking to buy things such as used cars via an auction.

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This is particularly true in the wake of the pandemic, where people typically look for cars at affordable prices. During this period, if you are lucky, you can actually get a car in mint condition at a much lower price.

That said, you must be careful since there are people who benefit from your unfamiliarity with the process of buying a car at an auction. This is why you need to know these terms to ensure you can participate in an auction safely and comfortably.

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6 Commonly Used Auction Terms


This is a catalog that contains the details and documents of the cars that will be auctioned. As you may know, hundreds of cars are auctioned at the auction house from time to time and this lot provides the information regarding the car you are looking to buy.

Open House

Open House is a process in which you can check a car’s physical condition and documents. Open House usually takes place 3 days before the auction. You will be notified about the schedule and location of the process.

If you already found your dream car from the lot, be sure to check its physical condition during the process.


To join the auction, you need to transfer money to the auction house account as a guarantee. If you lose the auction, this money will be transferred 100% back to you. Thus, you can be sure that this transfer is safe so long as you do it to the auction house’s account and not an individual’s account. 

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Auction Participant Number (NPL) 

This is a card used by bidders to submit a bid for the cars they desire. To get this card, bidders must make a deposit to the auction house.

Every auction house has a different NPL price. For example, at IBID auction house, the NPL price for cars is 5 million rupiahs, and for motorcycles is 1 million rupiahs. Don’t forget that one NPL is for one car only. If you would like to buy more than one car, you need to have several NPL.

Base Price

The price listed in the lot is the lowest price the bidders can submit a bid for. Thus, if you see an auctioned car with a low price, the price shown is its base price. Later during the auction, the price will be increased according to the bids submitted by the bidders. The base price is not the actual price of the car you are buying.

Hammer Price

This is the final price submitted by the winning bidder. This means only one bidder can buy the car auctioned. The hammer price is the price that you have to pay to buy the selected car at auction house

See also:Do These Things After Winning A Used Car Auction

In addition to knowing these terms, you need to understand the auction procedure. Typically, you can get information regarding an auction procedure on the internet or on the auction house’s official website. If you are participating in an auction by IBID, you can see this information on the official website of IBID Balai Lelang Serasi.

IBID, under Astra Group, has sold 27,000 four-wheeled vehicles at auction and held more than 500 auction events every year until the end of 2016.

IBID organizes auctions on a weekly basis in its 10 office branches across Indonesia. In addition, IBID has also held auctions in more than 30 cities in Indonesia.

Interested in joining an auction at IBID? Download the IBID app on Google Play Store and Apple App Store or visit