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Buyer's Premium and VAT

The final selling bid at auction is known as the ‘hammer price’. The auctioneer charges a buyer’s Premium of 20.5% of the hammer price.

Buyer’s premium is subject to VAT at the current rate of 20%. Therefore the final invoice total for bidders will be 24.6% above the hammer price inclusive of VAT.

An example for a lot purchased at £100 would be as follows:

£100 hammer price. £20.50 buyer’s premium. £4.10 VAT on buyer’s premium.

TOTAL AMOUNT DUE: £124.60

VAT in respect of non-UK buyers

If a buyer outside of the UK instructs the purchase to be shipped overseas then the auctioneer can demonstrate proof of export and thereby be authorised to remove the VAT from the buyer’s invoice. If however, a buyer is handling the export in person or through instructing a shipper independently the VAT will have to be paid and then reclaimed by the buyer or the buyer’s shipper at the port of departure. Buyers are reminded that it is their responsibility to comply with UK export regulations and any local import requirements.

If VAT can be removed for a buyer outside of the UK as described above then an example of an invoice total for a lot purchased for £100 would be as follows:

£100 hammer price. £20.50 buyer’s premium

TOTAL AMOUNT DUE: £120.50

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