House hunters can now participate in auctions through the country's first hybrid auction service by Ng Chan Mau and Co Sdn Bhd.
The first of its kind in Malaysia, the hybrid auction service enables interested housebuyers to purchase auction properties listed on their website during the auction fairs at their office in Kuala Lumpur.
The company saw great success at its inaugural hybrid auction fair that was held recently with some 25 listed potential buyers both on location at its office in Jalan Yap Kwan Seng, Kuala Lumpur, as well as online.
The company's business director Low Chee Hian, said the idea came about from the e-Lelong service provided by the Malayan High Court.
The company gathered interested buyers using online marketing via social media networks as well.
"We also hope to fetch more value for properties and bring more awareness through digital marketing, so buyers don't have to come to the venue here" added Low.
He said the company hoped to fetch an extra 5% to 10% for the properties they bid via the hybrid system that would benefit the borrowers as well.
The online bidding system, he added, would help bring in e-bidders not only from all over Malaysia but worldwide.
These extra players will help obtain a fair market value for the properties auctioned off so that the borrowers can have more to take home.
Asked if the market was ready to shift completely to e-bidding, he said the transition will take time.
Anticipating hiccups during the first few trials for new online bidders, Low said they encouraged interested parties to take a demo test first before participating.
He also said that bidders would be sent several reminders prior to the online auction event.
"We have automated voice reminders, three text messages as well as calls by our staff to remind them and get them ready for the auction" he said.
The first reminder will be a day before the auction, second an hour before and the third reminder at 15 minutes prior to the event. The company's staff will also make a phone call five minutes before the auction" he added.
Ensuring a fair and transparent deal, the company's next direction is to provide and review any hidden costs participants may incur when participating in the e-bidding auction.
The company will be hosting its second auction on Jan 27.
Using the e-bidder system is a fairly easy four-step process. It involves registering on their website for free, selecting properties with e-bidding option, completing e-bidding registration and auction deposit three working days before auction date and logging in to e-bidding system using secured PIN before auction time.