The Best on the Block: Luxury Homes at Auction

The real estate meltdown's effect on the luxury home market has been marked by drastic, mind-boggling price cuts. Take two extreme examples.

A beachfront Malibu home listed at $65 million just two years ago is now going for just $22 million, and the visionary "Razor," which cost $34 million to build and was initially listed at $45 million, has resigned itself to a $16 million ask.

And those prices are just starting bids.

Plagued by buyers leery of a market with no bottom in sight, sellers of luxury mansions, like those two homes, are shedding some their pride and bringing them to the auction block.

Many of those sales are "reserve auctions," meaning that for the place to actually sell, the winning bid must meet an undisclosed minimum. In those cases, you might say the sales method functions largely as a marketing tactic to build some buzz around a property.

Other auctions, however, are "absolute auctions" with no minimum bid and all the drama you might expect when a bunch of folks with money to spend get in front of an auctioneer's gavel.

See (above) our gallery of homes up for auction (both reserve and absolute), as well as some that recently went to the highest bidder.

Also see:
Luxury Homes on Auction Block in Bid to Buy Some Buzz

More on AOL Real Estate:
Find out how to
calculate mortgage payments.
homes for sale in your area.
foreclosures in your area.
Find rentals in your area.