Six years ago, I attended a real estate auction with my husband, Sam, and one of his clients. Less than two hours later, I walked out the co-owner of a new investment condo.

Today, builders are turning to auction companies to help them unload the thousands of spec homes they built – and now can’t seem to sell. The market is hot and then it’s not, but if you’re a builder, you may not be able to afford carry all of these houses until the residential market turns around.

Sellers are taking another look at auction houses, but before you hire one, do your due diligence through the National Association of Auctioneers or the National Association of Valuers and Auctioneers. Make sure the auction house is licensed by the state and insured. Check their track record. And make sure you have an attorney read any documents you have to sign.

Before the gavel hits, you’ll want to know what your options are.

With practical, informative consumer advice, I’m Ilyce Glink, News-Talk 750 WSB