Buying a horse at auction gives the advantage of being able to view a variety of horses for sale in one place, rather than having to plan several trips to view a number of horses at different locations.
However, unlike buying a horse as the result of a private sale where the horse can be viewed and then a decision made after careful thought over the course of a day or two, buying a horse at auction requires a fairly quick assessment of any horse before deciding to bid in order to buy it. It is therefore recommended to take along an experienced friend, instructor or trainer when attending a horse auction to have a second opinion before making the decision to bid on a horse.
The prices paid for horses at auction are very much determined by the number of people interested in each horse. Horses of interest to only a few bidders may end up being sold below the average market value, whereas horses with a high number of bidders may end up being sold for over the market value.
When attending any horse auction, even as an observer, it should be borne in mind that there are a number of horses from various locations and backgrounds that have been stroked and handled by a large number of people so it is advisable to change clothing, footwear, disinfect hands, etc before handling any horses after returning home to avoid any risk of passing on any infections.