The remnants of Howrey, formerly Washington’s second largest law firm, were sold off Friday during a live public auction. More than 300,000 square feet of office furniture, supplies and other items including LCD TVs, were auctioned off in a few hours at the firm’s former Pennsylvania Avenue headquarters.
About 50 people gathered on the second floor to bid on items ranging from 10-foot granite conference tables and commercial refrigerators to swivel chairs and office cubicles. Even the chairs and tables set up for bidders and the auctioneer’s lectern were sold.
Auctioneer Myron Bowling, of Ohio-based Myron Bowling Auctioneers, started the bidding about 10 a.m. by explaining the rules concerning loading fees and sales tax.
“I would have paid to be a junior associate at this law firm,” Bowling quipped.
The 459 lot items were generally grouped by room, allowing a bidder to purchase an entire set for as little as $50. Often times the loading fees were more than the amount paid for the items. Big-ticket items like refrigerators, granite and marble tables and LCD televisions were sold individually. One 10-foot granite table sold for $3,000 while a room set including a desk, chairs and bookcases sold for $50.
All items, Bowling said, must be out of the building by Aug. 26, because rent for the office space runs $50,000 a day. After that, only the placards still clinging to the wall will remain.