SPRINGFIELD - Illinois State Treasurer Dan Rutherford is pleased to announce the success of the Illinois State Treasurer’s Online Unclaimed Property Holiday Auction. The auction ran Nov. 26-30. “These auctions represent great opportunities to spread the word about I-Cash, because within minutes, you could find out if jewelry, coins, or money are being held in your name or in the name of your family members,” said Rutherford. The website to check the I-Cash database is at www.Icash.Illinois.gov.
An autographed copy of "The Mick," sold for $116.50 at this month's auction
“This auction listed 18,899 pieces of unclaimed property and sold 18,406 of the items for a 97 percent success rate. I am also pleased to note that we had more than 313,000 page views and nearly 114,000 unique users explore our auction,” said Rutherford. The treasurer’s office hosts the Illinois State Treasurer’s Online Unclaimed Property Holiday Auction because the rightful owners have not come forward to claim the items in more than five years.
“We sold a wide variety of interesting items in this auction, with total sales at $139,621, well above the $107,180 appraisal value,” explained Rutherford. “The items ranged from a one carat diamond ring to Beatles memorabilia to an antique camera to a rare penny.” All items sold in the auction were appraised by an outside vendor. The sale price of each lot was required to reach at least 75 percent of the appraised value.
Rutherford chose to conduct this unclaimed property auction online because it was more cost effective than having a live, in-person auction. “Using this process cuts auction costs significantly,” said Rutherford. Under the previously used eBay auction system, it cost the treasurer’s office approximately $29,000 to sell a similarly appraised amount of unclaimed property. Under Rutherford's online auction system, only $2,000 was used for the new iBid program to sell auction items. In addition, Rutherford says using the online auction required less time and attention from salaried employees, plus no physical space, hardware or security expenses.
The next online auction hosted by the Illinois State Treasurer’s Office will be in March 2013. If you would like to learn more about the Unclaimed Property Division, please visit www.treasurer.il.gov. For questions, please contact the treasurer’s office at 217-785-6998.