Frequently asked questions: Auctioneers and auction companies

Get answers to frequently asked questions about licenses for auctioneers and auction companies.

Licensing questions

Do I need an auctioneer license to call for bids on behalf of a charitable corporation, association, or political organization?

If you don't receive compensation for conducting the sale, you aren't required to be licensed as an auctioneer.

If I don't receive any wages but have my lunch provided, is that considered compensation?


Do I need an auctioneer license to auction my own items?

If you personally own the goods and didn't get them just to resell them, you don't need an auctioneer license.

What can be auctioned

Can I auction vehicles?

A licensed auctioneer can call bids for cars and other motor vehicles. The paperwork for releasing the title to the vehicle must be completed by someone with a dealer's license.

Can I auction firearms?

See ATF Ruling 96-2: Activities of Auctioneers Requiring a Dealer's License in the Federal Firearms Regulations Reference Guide.

Can I auction real estate?

A licensed auctioneer can call bids for real estate. However, you or an associate must be licensed to perform the activities regulated under Washington real estate licensing laws, including earnest money, contracts, and marketing.

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