Auctions are great for two things. First, there are usually a ton of hot older MILFs around. Second, and more importantly, it is always possible to snag a deal on some terrific art or furniture. If, that is, you know what you are doing.

This weekend, antiques fiends flock to New York City for the annual Americana Auctions. Bonhams, Christie's, Sotheby's... all the houses are hosting big sales of important old stuff.

If you're thinking of stepping up your game and aiming to add high quality items to your collection (like the awesome clock shown here), start thinking auction. But, before you do, check these simple points to buying smart and ensuring you won't make a mistake. There are frauds out there.

1. Believe Nothing and Check Everything.


The biggest blunder an auction-goer can make is putting their complete trust in the auction house.


The onus is ultimately on you to know what you’re buying, so don’t skimp on research and never pass up the chance to inspect an item in person.
2. Set a Limit.

Establishing prices for one-of-kind antiques and works of art can be tricky. Seasoned buyers rely on comps to help guide their bidding, so you should too. Spend some time searching auction result databases (like Live Auctioneers), all of which are online, most of which are free.
3. Attend Early.

Every auctioneer has his or her own style. Some drop the hammer in a flash. Others move at a glacial pace. Be sure to observe these quirks in advance, otherwise you’ll be left holding the paddle while another buyer loads your treasure into the trunk of their car.  
4. Loose Lips Sink Ships.

If an unscrupulous auctioneer or competitor senses you have deep pockets, they are more likely to run up the bidding. This really happens, so keep your bank account and level of interest to yourself.
5. Ask Questions.

There's no shortage of friendly dealers, curators, and collectors eager to share their knowledge. Don’t hesitate to strike up a conversation. These auction vets can help make you a smart buyer.

Also Watch