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FAQ

IN GENERAL

What are your office hours?

Our offices are open from Monday to Friday from 9 am to 12 pm and from 1.30 pm to 5.30 pm. During the auction and the exhibition days our office hours may be adapted. Please see our calendar for more information. During exhibitions, our offices are continuously open from 10 am to 6 pm.

How can I stay up-to-date on your sales?

Sign up for our mailing list or register via My Account [link] and enter the auctions you are interested in.

How can I order a catalogue?

You can order a single catalogue or purchase a subscription. You can find more information here.

Can I subscribe to your auction catalogues?

Definitely. Each live auction is accompanied by a refined and illustrated catalogue in which all lots are described in the appropriate scientific way. For more information on our rates and our formulas, click here.

Where can I find information about your auctions?

You will find an overview of our current sales / next sales here. Under 'Online only', you will find our Silent Sales and our Aftersales. The term Silent Sale comes from the fact that during these sales, we imposed silence on our auctioneer. It is a timed sale. You will find an overview of the past sales here. Check the calendar for the exact dates of the exhibitions and auctions.

What types of goods can be sold in the Auction House Bernaerts? Does Auction House Bernaerts sell everything?

Auction House Bernaerts specializes in auctions of high quality Art and Antiques. Twice a year an auction takes place around the Ancient & Romantic Masters [May / December] in which paintings and sculptures, refined furniture and applied arts [silver, porcelain, sculptures, jewellery, Asian arts...], dating from the 13th to the 19th century, are presented. In March and October, emphasis is placed on Modern Masters and Design [work of the 19th to the 21st century]. In addition, the auction house has emphasized for several years on "Works on Paper", in its so-called "WOP" auctions (Works on Paper - four times a year). In these auctions you will find ancient and modern engravings and drawings next to old and rare books, bibliophile editions, pamphlets, leaflets, postcards and other ephemera such as correspondence, manuscripts, books on art and photography (original photos and books of the 19th and the 21th century)

Comics lovers will enjoy our specialized comics sales organized twice a year. Our Arts and Antiques and Works on Paper experts [link naar Team] are at your disposal at any time. Get in touch with them via the contact form .

Auction House Bernaerts relies upon external experts for certain domains like, among others, works of European masters of top quality, design, jewellery, weapons and Asian art. In certain cases, the costs of this kind of estimate can be charged to the seller. Our experts will inform you about this matter in advance.

Why choose Bernaerts?

“Bernaerts, better in Belgium”. An important credo of Mon Bernaerts is that trade in art blooms in Belgium thanks to the knowledge of Belgian collectors and the relevant choices which are made in the procurement of ancient works of art as well as modern and contemporary ones. By believing in their own abilities and thanks to the trust given by an ever-growing clientele, Auction House Bernaerts was able to win international prizes for works of art offered to it on consignment.. 

What is a Silent Sale?

A "Silent Sale" is an online sale in which items are presented with an estimate lower than € 500. After their registration, interested parties can bid during a period of 18 calendar days on these "poor relations", and this from a starting price. The lots can be examined during the live auction exhibition days. The commission of the silent sales is 30%. The procedure to bid is the following:

1. Go to www.bernaerts.be
2. On the welcome page, click 'Online auctions'
3. Create an account and send us a copy of your ID (once only)
4. Accept the terms and conditions of sale using the link you received in your mailbox
5. Place your bid
6. After the auction, you will receive an email with the procedures for payment and retrieval.

What is an After-Sale?

An "After Sale" is the online sale of lots which did not find a buyer during the live auction. Interested parties have the opportunity to pick up one or more items by bidding on the lots they missed during the live auction until the Monday after the live auction. Nevertheless, the starting price for this type of sale is, as a rule, identical to that of the live auction. The commission for this auction is 30%. You will find our After Sales in the digital showroom. The procedure to bid is the following:

1. Go to www.bernaerts.be
2. On the welcome page, click 'Online auctions'
3. Create an account and send us a copy of your ID (once only)
4. Accept the terms and conditions of sale using the link you received in your mailbox
5. Place your bid
6. After the auction, you will receive an email with the procedures for payment and retrieval.

I would like to organize an event in one of your rooms. Is this possible?

The auction house is located in a historical Art Deco building at Verlatstraat 16-22. Here you will find the Verlat room, a large exhibition room on the ground floor area, and the Platform room, a former movie theatre on the first floor (also accessible by elevator). A third space was created in 2012, the Museum room, as a connection between the Verlatstraat and the Museumstraat. The Museum room offers an elegant gallery with windows, a kitchen and a large terrace. Rooms can be hired apart or together. To discuss the possibilities for renting one of the rooms, please contact Peter Bernaerts [peter@bernaerts.be] or, if you want to organize an event, Davy Luyten [info@platformbernaerts.be].

How can I reach the Auction House Bernaerts by car?

Auction house Bernaerts is located in the triangle between the M HKA, the Museum of Fine Arts and the FOMU, close to the closed Southern docks (spacious parking space). Since 1 February 2017 a part of Antwerp has been proclaimed low emission zone (LEZ). For more information, we refer you to www.slimnaarantwerpen.be/nl/lez.

There is no parking attached to the auction house, but loading and unloading in front of the door is no problem.

Free parking possibilities on the square between streets Vlaamse Kaai and Waalse Kaai are available and also on the quays along the Scheldt, at about 250 to 500 metres of the auction house. 

How can I reach the Auction House Bernaerts by public transport?

From the Central Station you have several possibilities:
- From the pre-metro station 'Astrid', tram 8 takes you directly to the stop 'Bres' on the Amerikalei, a 600 metres walk from the auction house.
- Tramway n° 10 tram takes you directly from the pre-metro station 'Astrid' to the stop 'Bestorming' in the Brederodestraat, about 700 meters from the auction house.

From the central station by the Groenplaats:
- Under the Central Station (pre-metro station ' Astrid ') you can take tram 3 and tram 5, which will take you to the Groenplaats. There, tram 4, above ground, will take you to the stop 'Museum ', just 150 metres from the auction house.
- If you prefer to ride above ground, trams 11 and 24 will take you to the stop 'Melkmarkt', where you can walk (150 m) to the Groenplaats to take tram 4 to the stop 'Museum'.

Tram 4 also directly takes you from 'Antwerp Berchem train station' to the sales room. For more information, please consult www.delijn.be.

Can one park his car near the auction house?

There is no parking attached to the auction house, but loading and unloading in front of the door is no problem. You can also park your car in the street, for a small fee. Free parking possibilities facing the Vlaamse Kaai are available and also on the quays along the Scheldt, at about 250 metres of the auction house.


BUYING

How can I attend an auction?

Our auctions are public and accessible to all. You can enter from half an hour before the start of the auction. Only if you want to bid, you must register with one of our staff at the reception where you will receive a paddle with your personal number in order to be able to bid. The seats are free, so booking is not necessary. You can leave the room at any time.

How can I bid at the live auction?

You present yourself to our staff at the entrance to the auction room on the first floor (room 'Platform', Verlatstraat 16) at least half an hour before the start of the auction or during the auction. You register with your ID and will be offered a paddle with your personal bidding number. With this number you can make it clear to the auctioneer that you want to bid on an item. This bidding number is valid for all the sessions of the auction. Once you finished your bidding, you can leave the room and return the paddle to one of our employees.

Using an 'absentee bidding form'

You complete the 'absentee bidding form' during your visit at the auction house, or you download [link] it and deliver it no later than 24 h prior to the auction to one of our staff members, or you send it by email (info@bernaerts.be) or by fax (+ 32 3 248.15.93), no later than 5 hours prior to the start of the auction. The auctioneer will try to purchase the item for you at the most beneficial price. Mind you, this price will not include the auction fees.

By telephone

You complete the 'absentee bidding form by phone' [link] and deliver it no later than 24 h prior to the auction to one of our staff members or you send it by email (info@bernaerts.be) or by fax (+32 3 248.15.93), no later than 5 hours prior to the start of the auction. One of our staff members will call you during the auction to bid in real time. You can instruct them whether or not you agree with the bid. This service is only possible for bids starting from € 1,000.

Via My Account

You register on our website on 'My Account'. With your personal Bernaerts profile [link], you can save your favourite items and, if you want so, leave a bid. You will receive a confirmation via e-mail. Just as with a written bid, this bid has to be registered no later than 24 h before the auction. The auctioneer will try to purchase the item for you at the most beneficial price. Mind you, this price will not include the auction fees.

Via 'Live Bidding'

You can follow the auction through live-stream on your computer or tablet. Please be advised that you will have to register at least five hours before the start of the auction if you want to participate in the bidding.

1. Go to www.bernaerts.be
2. On the welcome page, click 'Online auctions'
3. Create an account and send us a copy of your ID (once only)
4. Accept the terms and conditions of sale using the link you received in your mailbox
5. The auction is accessible as from a quarter of an hour before the start.

Log in with your personal data and click on 'Enter Auction'. Place your bid. If you did not register on time, you will only be able to see the auction through the 'Watch only' function.

I bought an item. How should I proceed further?

If you were present in the auction room, you can pay your purchase immediately after the auction and collect it. If you were absent, you will receive an overview of your purchases and payment options the day after the sale. Payment and removal must be done no later than the Friday of the week following the week of the auction.

When can I collect my purchase?

You can collect your purchase at the auction house, Immediately after the auction, in the auction week (not during the auctions themselves) during office hours (9 - 12 am and 1.30 - 5 pm), or on the Saturday after the live auction (10-12 am) and at very last ten days after the first day of the auction. If this term has expired, an interest of 1% per month of the hammer price, with a minimum of € 5 per day and per item, will be charged as storage cost. If you are prevented, you can grant a power of attorney for the collection of your purchases by a third party, after receipt of payment.

How can I pay?
  • Cash: in euro up to an amount of € 2,999 per settlement, all costs included.
  • Bancontact
  • A bank cheque guaranteed by a Belgian bank in euro.
    The collection costs of the cheques shall be borne by the buyer.
  • Following credit cards are accepted:
    Visa, MasterCard or Eurocard (additional costs may be charged)
  • By bank transfer to the account number:
    111-22656241-87
    IBAN BE67 1112 6562 4187
    BIC/SWIFT ABERBE22
    indicating your name/username, auction code and item number.

    Please bear in mind that in case of a bank transfer, it will take a couple of days before we receive the amount on our account.
    The purchased good can only be picked up upon receipt of payment.
  • If you registered via My Account you can consult your invoices and pay safely online.
How much is the buyer's commission?

In addition to the price of each lot, you will have to pay a commission, a fixed administration fee and possibly a droit de suite (right to follow or resale right).

  • The amount of the commission if you buy in the room, through a purchase order, by phone or via My Account is 22% for Art & Antiques auctions and 23% for Works on Paper and for Comics sales.
  • In the simultaneous sale online, the commission amounts to 26% on the hammer price.
  • The commission for our Silent and After Sales is 30% on the hammer price.
  • In addition, administrative costs of € 2 per item will be invoiced.
  • In some cases, you may also have to pay a droit de suite of 4% on the hammer price [for hammer prices from € 2,000 on] for original works of art by living artists or artists who died less than 70 years ago.
What is the droit de suite (right to follow or resale right) ?

The droit de suite is an extension of the copyright law that entitles a compensation to the creator of a work of art in case of a resale of the work.

This right may apply both to sculptures and to graphic works of art. A droit the suite is charged in case of a resale of original works of art of living artists or artists who died less than 70 years ago and from a price of € 2,000.00 on. It amounts to 4% of the price up to € 50,000.00; to 3% of the auction price segment between € 50,000.01 and € 200,000.00; to 1% of the auction price segment between € 200,000.01 and € 350,000.00; to 0.50% of the auction price segment between € 350,000.01 and € 500,000.00; to 0.25% of the auction price segment above € 500,000.01 price. However, the droit de suite can never exceed € 12,500.00.

The rate of the first segment, i.e. 4%, should be applied to the entire amount that lies within this segment.

What is My Account?

My Account is the online platform reserved to our customers. After your registration you can create your personalized Bernaerts space. You can consult our catalogue, save your favourite items, place a bid and indicate the auctions and/or research the items you prefer. So, you can compose and manage your own archives. It goes without saying that you can also review your purchases, download your invoices and pay online.

As a seller, you can check the status of the items you have entrusted to us, the auctions for which they have been selected and the selling price. You can also take the opportunity to attend a concert of classical music, a private opening, and much more.


SELLING

How will I know if my item / my collection is eligible for one of your auctions?

To find out if your works of art are eligible for one of our auctions we recommend to send us first some pictures of the object(s). A clear picture of the item or some overview pictures of home contents give our experts a first impression about the quality and the sales possibilities of your item(s).

Please note that we cannot give you an immediate estimate at that point. You can send us these pictures by post, email (expertise@bernaerts.be) [link] or using the form below. Please provide a brief description, dimensions and eventually the origin of the item, as well as, if possible, signature, date, material and/or flaws. To the extent possible, your request will be answered within a week after sending.

If your request is deemed positive, then we will ask you to bring your item(s) to our offices for a more accurate estimate. This estimate is free and non-binding. For important pieces and large home contents, we will gladly visit you at home.

What should I do with the items which are not considered for one of your auctions?

There is also the possibility to deal with a complete household, in other words, the content of a house/apartment. To this end, the Auction House Bernaerts chooses, in consultation with the seller, the most appropriate sales channel (on line or auction house) for the items which are not considered for one of your auctions.

Can you also do a valuation for mutual share-out/insurance/notary

Our experts are at your disposal to draw up a valuation report of your art collection, for private use, for notaries or for insurance companies. The costs for such an appraisal are discussed in advance: depending on the amount of the collection, the costs will based a flat rate or a percentage. In this latter case, you must count 3% of the lowest valuation fork. Important: you will be refunded for this percentage if you decide to present the item (s) for auction within the year following the date of the appraisal. In that case, those item (s) will be sold with a seller's fee of 12% instead of 15%, thus making the appraisal free of charge.

A flat-rate valuation amounts to € 250 for the first hour (€ 150 starting from the second hour) plus travel and dictation costs (at a rate of € 0.50 per km), VAT not included. These costs cannot be recovered.

Can the expert visit me at home?

Valuation at your home is free of charges as long as the items are presented at one of our auctions. Before sending an expert to your home, we ask you to send us photos to see if your art objects are is eligible for one of our auctions.

What are my costs as a seller?

The seller's commission amounts to 15% of the hammer price. This includes all costs (valuation by our services, storage, insurance, photography,...] except the transport and, possibly, an additional valuation.) After the sale of the goods, you will receive a statement mentioning the hammer price minus the commission and, where appropriate, the additional charges [transport and/or additional valuation]. The net amount is paid five weeks after the auction by bank transfer, provided that the item has been paid by the purchaser. 

Can I stipulate a limit price?

For each item an indicative estimate is given on the consignment slip. There are three different possibilities to determine the limit price.

  • No limit (lower than € 1,000): items estimated under € 1,000 are sold to the highest bidder, without any reserve, 'at any price'. In this case, a '0' is listed on the consignment slip under 'start/limit'. An estimate is giving for items estimated from € 500 on in the catalogue.
  • Discrete limit (€ 1,000-€ 3,000): For estimations from € 1,000 on, a discrete limit is set: the item is sold to the highest bidder with a self-imposed limit by the auction house, the so-called 'discrete limit', namely about 25% less than the estimate. E.g.: € 2,000/€ 2,500 estimate, discrete limit: € 1,500. The consignment slip only states the estimate.
  •  
  • Limit price (higher than € 3,000): at Bernaerts, each item with an estimate from € 3,000 on receives a limit price. This price is clearly stated on the consignment slip.
Can I attend the exhibition and the selling of my items?

Prior to each auction, the Auction House Bernaerts organizes an exhibition, so potential buyers can examine and investigate the items offered. The exhibition is held each Thursday through Sunday prior to the auction, continuously from 10 am to 6 pm. You are obviously welcome to both the exhibition and the auction of your items. Booking in advance is not necessary for the auction is public and accessible to everyone. As a seller, you will also get a free ticket to our Platform concerts, every Thursday evening of the exhibition.

What happens when one of my lots / my lot has not been sold?

If one or more items remained unsold, the choice is yours: either you take the item(s) back, or you leave the item(s) in consignment with us and we will try to offer it a second time at a next auction. Please note: at the second offer, the estimates should eventually be lowered, up to a maximum of 50% of the initial price. We recommend that you contact us to discuss this further. If within a reasonable time we hear nothing of you, the item(s) is (are)automatically presented at a next auction. Unsold items at a Silent Sale might be presented at a next auction with a starting price of € 1.

What is My Account?

My account is the online platform reserved for our customers. As a seller, you receive a unique customer code with which you can register, and thus track the status of your consigned items. So you will know for which auctions they have been selected, their assigned item numbers and their selling price. You can also adapt your personal data and keep track of your payments. As a buyer, you can consult our catalogue, save your favourite items, place a bid and indicate the auctions and/or research the items you prefer. So, you can compose and manage your own archives. It goes without saying that you can also review your purchases, download your invoices and pay online.

Contact

Bernaerts Auctioneers
Verlatstraat 16-22
Museumstraat 25
2000 Antwerp
Belgium

T +32 3 248 19 21
F +32 3 248 15 93
E info(at)bernaerts.be

contact us

Office hours

Mo-Fr: 9 am to 12 pm / 1h30 pm to 5h30 pm

Bank details

Bank de Kremer
Ledeganckkaai 7, 2000 Antwerpen
IBAN BE67 1112 6562 4187
BIC/SWIFT ABERBE22

ING Bank
Waalse Kaai 7, 2000 Antwerpen
IBAN BE03 3200 5327 3884
BIC/SWIFT BBRUBEBB

VAT BE0413901869

Links

Intakeform (estimate)
Registration newsletter
Registration "My account"
Vacancies

Last minute news

Verlatstraat 18

From now on, we receive our visitors at our reception area via Verlatstraat 18.

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