Auction Techniques Shifts the Home Buyer’s Focus from Price to Value

KC-Based Cates Auction & Realty Say Today’s Sellers Are Better Off Saying Goodbye to the Realtor and Hello to Competitive Bidding

Today’s home or business property sellers looking to move their property fast and with less hassle would be wise to look into a competitive bidding marketing strategy.

Using auction techniques honed over the past 79 years, Kansas City-based Cates Auction & Realty created an innovative online marketplace for competitive bidding. This innovation creates a competitive atmosphere geared toward shifting the buyer’s focus from price to the property’s value. This digital approach targets and captures qualified buyers, driving elevated results.

Cates Auction & Realty is a licensed real estate brokerage and leader in selling real estate online at auction. Company leadership says the auction industry is on the verge of a generational shift and that growth will have a massive ripple effect on how people buy and sell real estate.

Fourth-generation family members Chandler and Cambridge Cates now bring their background in modern technology, marketing intelligence, and data to the table, complemented by CEO & Auctioneer Jeff Cates’ unique auction methods.

“Our digital-first platform combines everything in one place — we’re focused on the synergy between the demand drivers and unlocking the ‘liquidity pool’ as a mechanism for more efficient price discovery,” Chief Innovation Officer Chandler Cates said. “This extends across our entire ecosystem from our marketing materials, activities, and bidding to client interaction and engagement. It’s end-to-end.”

He added they are tirelessly working to ensure the warmth and humanity that made Cates a nationally respected name in the industry is always front of mind.

“We’re striving to preserve the human element of the auction. In the past, my father would have been conducting the auction live on-site. He would be on the mic with my grandfather, engaging the crowd and managing the sale, all for the sake of maximizing value for our clients. Though technology has changed the industry considerably, we strive to stay true to that aspect in everything we do.”

Cates prepares a tailored marketing strategy for clients designed to engage the highest volume of qualified bidders. They saturate the market through various promotional channels with urgency to reach a larger audience of buyers.

As a market leader, the company is recognized for its digital-first presence and marketing achievements, claiming two coveted “Best In Show” awards, and two platinum and two gold awards, at the 2021 NAA Marketing Competition in partnership with USA Today.

While competitive bidding shares similarities to how most Realtors manage sales, one difference in selling at auction is the property is sold “as is” and on a “non-contingent” basis, with a 30-day projected closing date. According to the auction terms, a prospective buyer cannot make their bid contingent on any outside factors such as financing or inspections.

“It amounts to a contingency-free closing which is not typical with buys made through a realtor,” Cates said. “It’s a real change in unlocking liquidity and reducing risk.”

Cates Auction and Realty sells non-distressed residential and commercial property and conducts personal property auctions without real estate attached. The firm offers complimentary analysis to sellers, selecting one out of five properties to sell on average based on how well the property fits the company’s service model.

A strong focus on commercial business is evident in hiring Chief Operating Officer, Alex Forster, a top-producing commercial real estate broker and entrepreneur working in commercial real estate in the fast-paced Los Angeles market.

Forster, who previously worked at Colliers International and Marcus & Millichap’s, The Harris Group (THG), a private client team with over $9 billion in investment sales across 700 transactions.

He believes competitive bidding will be a major mover in the evolution of the industry. “What first caught my attention initially was the firm’s marketing capabilities far exceed anything I have witnessed in the real estate industry. After seeing the exciting growth in the industry, deciding to join the executive team at Cates Auction was easy.”

He added, “I think we can propel this industry forward on a more transparent, trustworthy, and honest path, all with the ability to maximize the results for our sellers.”

This shift in focus changes the way Cates positions itself in the market, as well. The company doesn’t view other auction companies as their competition; most of the time, it’s the traditional Realtor. The company is assertively making inroads with Gen X, Gen Z, and Gen Y and expanding into the burgeoning senior downsizing Industry.

Estate services and seller-managed auctions utilizing the Cates platform are also on the horizon. These innovations and the dramatic generational shift to digital point to putting clients in the driver’s seat to drive demand and command better results.

“We are offering the seller multiple ways to sell with us. They don’t have to worry about the disposition or liquidation of assets they don’t have the time or capacity to handle,” Cates said. “They may be elderly and cannot do it, or they don’t want to deal with the hassle. We will take care of it.”

For more information, visit or call +1.877.781.1134.

Alex Greenwood
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