A client of mine recently asked me about an email he had received, offering him the opportunity to bid on a domain name he had been wanting. Bidding, after checking with the notifier, started at $1000.00. I advised him to wait, let me keep checking on the domain name.After around 8 weeks it became available, and I bought it for him for under $12.00 per year.
There are some firms whose business it is to buy domain names on spec, send them out to those with a name which seems "close" and see what happens. If the name doesn't sell shortly, they can recind their purchase. It's just business, but if you own a .net or a .biz and the name you have becomes available in a .com it's most likely one of these firms that has bought it on spec.
Now, what you do with your money is your decision, but as a web designer, I advise you to wait. This was the fourth domain name I had bought in this manner, and I'm sure it will happen again and again as the business world continues to "shake down". Talk to your designer before participating in any type of auction.