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Make LOTRO Gold with the Auction House

Make LOTRO Gold with the Auction House

When trying to raise your in-game wealth, the Auction House can be your best friend or worst enemy. How can you save time when using the auction house? How should you price your auctions? Read on!

Free and Premium Tactics

Free and Premium players are hampering when selling on the AH due to a lack of AH posting slots. Premium players get 5 per character, Free players get none. If you think you'd like to persue AH gold making strategies, consider purchasing the 5 posting slot upgrade on the LOTRO Store.

Create an Auction House Mule

An auction house mule is an alternate character (alt) you dedicate to a staying near a mailbox, bank and auction house. For low level alts, the best places are Michel Delving in the Shire or Thorin's Hall. Therefore, if you are creating a new character for this purpose, starting with a dwarf or hobbit will save you time. Once your mule is in Michel Delving or Thorin's Hall, discard anything he doesn't need and bank the rest.

Your auction house mule serves several purposes:
  • Gives you a character at the AH you can log to for a quick price check, so you can decide whether to list or vendor an item.
  • Gives you a character to mail rare and non-stackable loot to. Mailing stacks of ore will cut into your profit margin significantly, but recipes and rare gear are taking up valuable bag space.
  • Store items in the mule's mailbox, bags and bank until it's the right time to sell or you have the right quantity to sell.

Be a Wary Buyer

Occasionally, you will see auctions that you know are underpriced. Perhaps you just sold the same item for a lot more. If you are confident, snap it up and relist it for more. However, be careful when speculating on the AH. The game changes constantly (read the patch notes carefully), and yesterday's hot market can become today's dog. Also be wary of trying to "corner" the market on any given item -- at the very least you'll encourage competition.

Be a Savvy Seller

When you sell has a big impact. Usually, you'll get a higher price for your goods on the weekend (especially Friday and Saturday evenings) when demand is highest. Specialize in a small group of items and track the price fluctuations throughout the week. You'll be better prepared to recognize the bargains and competition in your niche. You'll learn which items sell in smaller stacks and why.

Always set a buyout on your auctions. The person who wants your item wants it now and they have money to spend.

Price your Auction Correctly

Pricing your auction correctly is critical. First, you need to determine the duration of your auction. It's a pain to relist auctions every few hours, but the posting fee on a stack of 100 ore is substantial. The general rule of thumb is if the posting fee is high, list it for shorter duration (pay attention to when you list!). When the posting fee is low, you can afford to let the auction run longer.
  • 4 hours = 3% of what an NPC vendor would pay you (vendor price)
  • 8 hours = 6% of vendor price
  • 24 hours = 20% of vendor price
  • 48 hours = 40% of vendor price
Second, establish your cost. This is what you must sell the item for to do as well as you would have by vendoring the item. When you first post an item on the AH, what an NPC vendor would pay you for the item (vendor price) is shown in the the Initial Price field. You'll have to pay a Posting Fee to post the item based on the duration of the auction. Add the posting fee to the vendor price to establish your cost, but don't post yet!

Next, establish the buy-out price. Open the Auction interface and drag your item to the Item Name box on the Auctions tab. Sort by Buyout. Get a sense of what the market will bear, per unit, for the item you are selling. If it's not at least 10% above your cost, you're done. Go vendor the item. It's not worth your time, the posting fee and the Auction Fee you'll pay when the item sells. For items that look profitable, set your buyout price to be around the low end of the market price per unit. Whether you set it a little above or a little below depends on you, but remember if your item doesn't sell the posting fee is not refunded.

Finally, adjust your buy-in price. It should be 60-90% of the buyout price and greater than your cost. The shorter the auction duration, the closer you want the buy-in price to be to the buy-out price. If you are uncertain of the buy-out price, you can set the buy-in to 50% on a long auction. If the buyout price is well established, you can set the buy-in to 99% of the buy-out price. When the item sells, you'll pay an additional Auction Fee (5% of the winning bid).

Some Examples

Example 1: Superb Stone Axe of Mauling. The axe vendors for 10s, so the posting fee for 48 hours is 4s. I put the axe up for auction on Friday afternoon and it sells Sunday morning for the buyout of 100s. I receive 95s in the mail (after the 5% Auction fee is assessed). My net profit is 91s vs the 10s I would have received if I had vendored it.

Example 2: Barrow-Iron Ore or Ingots. I have 100 Barrow-Iron Ore that I could also sell as 50 Barrow-Iron Ingots. By viewing existing auctions, I see I can get 5s per ore or 8s per ingot. Since it takes 2 ore to make 1 ingot, I'll make more money by selling the ore. I want to list the auction for 24 hours starting Saturday morning. It's a mid length auction, so I set my buy-in to 80% (400s) of my buy-out of 500s. My posting fee is 22s and my auction fee when it sells is 25s. My net profit is 453s vs the 66s I would have made if I had vendored the ore.

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