I bid on a Lando Trilogo general and lost - but I reserved my big bids for Starcom. I bid over 500 each for fair conditioned rare(ish) vehicles with slightly bashed boxes. And lost by miles on each one. My total bids were over 3k and won one (low priced!) non sw thing.
Nope - I had a few bids on some boxed vehicles and a Kenner Canada AT-ST driver and each lot went over by a decent margin. As Mikeyt27 said, when you factor in the buyers premium and VAT it gets silly.
I had some succcess on there a few years back just picking up odd loose pieces that I needed, but anything carded / bagged / boxed just goes for way beyond my budget now. Always had a positive experience with Vectis in terms of after-sales and their deliveries were packaged to be bomb proof.
Recently joined Vectis to look at sold prices - eek! I was considering trying one or two carded figures with them but their next TV & Film Related sale isn't until the end of October. There is a Star Wars one at the end of September but not sure if the prices will end up lower with all the 'competition'? As a seller the high prices are tempting but when commission has been taken into account is it worth it?
I definitely think auctions have their place. If you don't have the time, energy, knowledge or ability, the auction houses can clearly help. But there have been many occasions where selling privately would almost certainly have given the seller significantly more money.