Buy or Bid sale

buy or bid

In our BUY-or-BID sale, you never pay more than the Buy price.

Paulus Swaen Buy-or-Bid
is now
Rare Paper Sales Buy-or-Bid

Paulus Swaen and New World Cartographic (Chicago) have joined forces to offer more Americana, posters, ephemera and other rare papers!
From the catalog of this unique Buy-or-Bid Sale, you can buy or bid on hundreds of fine, rare paper items and you never pay more than the Buy price.
The most used terms and expression are below:

Sign Up
To bid, you have to sign up and you have to agree to our terms and conditions.
The buyer conditions are laid out on the Buyer Terms page.
The terms for the seller are laid out on the Seller terms page.

Buyer's Premium
A buyer pays on the hammer price a commission of 20% on the first $40,000 and 10% on the excess.
Purchase at the Buy price any time during the sale and enjoy 0% Buyer's Premium.
Illinois residents will be charged a 7% sales tax on the hammer price, commission and shipping unless we are provided a copy of an Illinois reseller's permit.

Certificate of authenticity We warranty the authenticity of each lot offered in our sale. This guarantee has no time limitation.
  • We do not sell reproductions.
  • A certificate of authenticity is provided for each acquired item and can be downloaded from your invoice page.

    We conduct sales in the second week of February, March, April, May, June, September, October, and November. See our agenda for 2024.
  • Condition report
    Defects in lots have been carefully noted.
    • If there are no remarks regarding splits, tears, discoloration, etc., there are no issues to be found for the item!
    • All items are carefully and personally examined before being packed "in-house" and shipped by UPS, USPS, DHL or registered mail.

    Starting Price
    Items have a minimum starting bid price, which can be below the BidAsk spread!

    The Bid AskSpread
    The 'BidAsk Spread' shows the gap between the minimum accepted price of the item and the seller's asking price; this is called the Buy price.
    • The lowest amount in the BidAsk Spread is the minimum accepted Bid (Reserve) of the item.
    • The item will sell at the end of the sale to the highest received bid within the BidAsk Spread.
    • The Buy price - the highest amount in the BidAsk Spread can be paid at any time during the sale, and the sale is immediately closed.
      Purchase at the Buy price and enjoy 0% Buyer's Premium.

    Bid below the BidAsk Spread
    A label will show if you bid below the BidAsk spread. You must increase your bid to succeed. Below Spread
    • Bids below the BidAsk Spread are usually not accepted by the sellers.
    • However, the seller can lower his reserve to come closer to your bid, but the item only sells when the seller accepts your bid.
    • When the seller accepts such a below BidAsk bid, an email is sent to the bidder. In this event a cancellation by the bidder must be made at the latest within 24 hours after the closing, or the item is automatically added to the invoice.

    Bid Increment
    The bid increment is the amount a bid will be raised each time the current bid is outdone. It is predetermined based on the current high bid.
    The bid increment gets larger as the bid price increases.

    The minimal new bid amount is indicated on each item page.
    $ 1 - $ 99 > $ 5
    $ 100 - $ 199 > $ 10
    $ 200 - $ 499 > $ 25
    $ 500 - $ 999 > $ 50
    $ 1,000 - $ 1,999 > $ 100
    $ 2,000 - $ 4,999 > $ 200
    $ 5,000 - $ 9,999 > $ 500
    $ 10,000 - $ 19,999 > $ 1,000
    $ 20,000 - $ 49,999 > $ 2,500
    $ 50,000 - and up > $ 5,000

    Note: A bid increment will go higher than the standard increment in two situations:
    * To meet the low BidAsk Spread (reserve).
    * To beat a competing bidder's high bid.

    Proxy Bidding
    For bids entered within the BidAsk spread, we use the proxy-bidding process. Our system will act as your bidding agent by entering your bid competitively against other bidders.
    You don't have to worry about sitting at your computer to track the bidding process until the closing. Proxy bidding takes the stress out of the bidding process, and you get the item at the lowest possible price.

    How it works
    - You can bid the maximum price you would be willing to pay for an item.
    - If there are no other bidders on a lot, the winning bid is always reduced to the lowest amount as shown in the BidAsk spread.
    - If another bid comes in, the software will place a new bid following the bid increment until the sale ends and you win or the price exceeds your set maximum.
    -Your maximum bid is always confidential.
    For example:
    - if the BidAsk spread is $50 - 100 and you place a bid of $ 80, and no other bids exist, the high bid will be reduced to $50.
    - If another person places a bid of $55, our proxy system will increase your bid to $60 since that is one increment above the other bid.

    My Buy-or-Bid Watch List
    In Buy-or-Bid Watch List, you can see all winning and losing bids. You can add as many items to the list as possible.
    • The item is automatically added to the Buy-or-Bid Watch Page after bidding.
    • After the closing of the sale this page also shows you the reserve price of the listed items.
    • Up to twenty-four hours after the closing, you can buy items from this list at the reserve price.
    After the closing
    Right after the closing of the sale, you can see your winning and losing bids in My Buy-or-Bid Watch List.
    The invoices will be online two hours after the closing.
    • Items purchased at the Buy price and bids between the BidAsk spread are automatically accepted and added to your invoice.
    • In the 24 hours following the closing, you can buy an unsold items at its Reserve price from your Watch Page by clicking the label Buy and add to invoice
    • A bid made below the BidAsk spread accepted by the seller can be canceled until 24 hours after the closing.
    • When you don't want the item at your initial bid below the BidAsk spread, you simply click the label : I do not want this item
    • The items that did not sell within 24 hours after the closing remain unsold and are no longer available.

    When ready, go to the Invoice & Certificate section From here, you can see your Invoice and download and print certificates.

    Invoices and certificates are available in the Buyer Center two hours after the closing of a sale.
    • The invoices are in US$ and can be paid by most credit cards, PayPal, or wire transfers.
    • European buyers can pay in Euros, with most credit cards, iDEAL, and bank wire to our Wise bank account.
      The currency exchange is done at a middle rate.

    Maps are shipped in solid tubes or flat between solid cardboard. Fully insured, signature required, and with online tracking.
    Shortly before shipment, you will get the tracking number by email.
    • The standard is to ship items by UPS. For European destinations, we ship from our European distribution hub, DHL.
    • A flat shipping fee of $ 25 for American and European destinations is added to each shipment. For other destinations, the fee is $40 - $50. It is a one-time fee even if you buy multiple items.
    • This fee covers shipping and insurance (up to the invoice amount).
    • We charge only a one-time shipping fee if you have won two or more items or use our Hold shipping service.
    • Rare Paper Sales allows you to put your shipping on hold at no additional charge. This can be incredibly convenient for people who want to buy several items at different auctions and ship them together.
    We are happy to include quality antique maps, old master prints, paper ephemera or posters.
    • Rare Paper Sales has more than 12.000 clients who are collectors, museums, and dealers worldwide constantly looking for fine-quality merchandise.
    • Our unique buy-or-bid system allows sellers to set their reserves and anticipate immediately on received bids during and up to two hours after the sale's closing.
    • Pierre Joppen has 45 years of experience in the map trade and started his first online auction more than 25 years ago. 
    • Sammy Berk has been active in the trade for 10 years, worked as an auctioneer, and has organized several physical and virtual map fairs.
    • If you are based in Europe, you can contact Ian Williams from the UK or Roland Boelen in Amsterdam, each of whom has 30 years of map cataloging experience. 
    • We can assist you in English, Dutch, German and French. Together, we have more than a century of experience in the trade of maps, prints, and rare paper.
    Learn more

    Rare Paper Sales
    1200 W. 35th Street, #425
    Chicago, IL 60609, USA
    tel. : (312) 496 - 3622
    email : @

    Paulus Swaen Old Maps and Prints
    Clearwater, USA - Amsterdam NL
    tel. USA +1 727 687 3298
    tel. NL +33 (0)6 27839704
    email : @