A small group of protesters gathered outside the Shelbourne Hotel to show their opposition to the auction.
Patrick Grant (41) from Artane, Co Dublin, was among them. He fears his family home will soon be repossessed.
He said: "I am a father of four children and I have a disability. Through no fault of my own, I lost my job. I owned a chain of gift shops all over Ireland, but the recession hit.
"Now I am 12 months in arrears with my mortgage repayments and I am receiving threatening letters from the bank. I am also now on anti-depressants because of the anxiety.
"It is gut-wrenching to watch these people walk past us today and to know that among the properties being put up for auction are the homes of families who have been left with no choice but to hand over the keys. I can see no light at the end of the tunnel."
David Hall of the New Beginning group, which provides free legal assistance to struggling mortgage-holders, was among the 15 protesters outside the hotel as the auction got under way yesterday morning.
"It is sickening to think there are lots on sale today which were homes belonging to families that were repossessed," he said.
Allsop/Space director Step- hen McCarthy, whose company conducted the auctions, said he accepted there were some tragic stories behind some of the lots, but added that none of the houses on sale had been forcibly repossessed.