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-   -   Best way to sell instruments? (https://www.acousticguitarforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=534624)

Dino Silone 01-14-2019 10:18 AM

Best way to sell instruments?
 
Iíve been envying those posters who talk about, ďI bought such and such, then sold it after xxx months...Ē, etc. My acquisition habits have been more like a black hole - nothing escapes the gravitational field...

I need to change that, because I have my eyes on a more expensive guitar than Iíve ever owned (though not at all expensive by forum standards), and I feel like I have to let something go in order to justify the expense.

I have a viola that I havenít played in almost 10 years, and an American Stratocaster that I bought back in the 1980s, and that I never play. Also a Greek Bouzouki that I barely touch anymore. Whatís the best way to sell instruments? Iíve looked at (and bought) on Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace, but those seem to cater to low end. And a viola or a Greek bouzouki is kind of a niche thing to begin with. Is Reverb the way to go? Ebay? How do you folks do it? What are the things to watch out for?

Thanks!

merlin666 01-14-2019 10:38 AM

I have very limited experience as I am also a "buy and hold" guy. However, the few items I have sold, and am currently offering are all listed on local online advertising (e.g. kijiji, craigslist, used etc). I don't have the stomach to deal with remote buyers, transaction clearing, packing, shipping etc. While I have bought most of my guitars this way, I much prefer for the buyers to check out and inspect the instruments themselves, and to hand over the cash it they buy it. That said, I live in a fairly small city so this works only because I am not in a rush to sell and can wait for months or even years.

guitarlifestyle 01-14-2019 10:38 AM

Reverb has been the most successful place for me lately.

Acousticado 01-14-2019 10:43 AM

Consider upgrading your forum membership level to charter membership for a nominal fee (as little as $25/yr.) so you can buy and sell in the AGF Classifieds. Do your homework for a bit and you’ll find there are many trusted sellers here. You can upgrade here.

Dino Silone 01-14-2019 10:47 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by merlin666 (Post 5948268)
I have very limited experience as I am also a "buy and hold" guy. However, the few items I have sold, and am currently offering are all listed on local online advertising (e.g. kijiji, craigslist, used etc). I don't have the stomach to deal with remote buyers, transaction clearing, packing, shipping etc. While I have bought most of my guitars this way, I much prefer for the buyers to check out and inspect the instruments themselves, and to hand over the cash it they buy it. That said, I live in a fairly small city so this works only because I am not in a rush to sell and can wait for months or even years.

I agree, that would be ideal. Iím just wondering if something like a viola even gets nibbles on Craigslist around here, even though Iím within 10 miles of New York City. The shop where I bought it has a really good trade-in policy, but I donít want another bowed string, and thatís all they sell.

Iíve heard nightmare stories about PayPal, where buyers make false claims about not receiving the merchandise, or claim that it was damaged or not as described, and that the seller is treated as guilty until proven innocent. So, yes, Iíd much rather sell for cash, in person...

Dino Silone 01-14-2019 10:49 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by guitarlifestyle (Post 5948269)
Reverb has been the most successful place for me lately.

Thanks, Iíll give that a look.

frankmcr 01-14-2019 11:00 AM

For the viola I would suggest a local violin etc. shop. A lot would depend on the quality though, if it's a student grade instrument those get traded in for upgrades all the time so maybe not much demand.

For the bouzouki . . . old ebay still seems to be the place for kind of oddball instruments. Ichigenkin, bulbul tarang, gadulka - ebay has 'em.

Dino Silone 01-14-2019 11:19 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by frankmcr (Post 5948289)
For the viola I would suggest a local violin etc. shop. A lot would depend on the quality though, if it's a student grade instrument those get traded in for upgrades all the time so maybe not much demand.

. Iíll try the shop where I bought it - they have a generous trade-in policy, but you have to be upgrading. I donít think theyíll just buy an instrument outright. But itís worth a try.

Quote:

For the bouzouki . . . old ebay still seems to be the place for kind of oddball instruments. Ichigenkin, bulbul tarang, gadulka - ebay has 'em.
I originally got the bouzouki on Craigslist. Iím not far from Astoria, Queens, so a bouzouki isnít an ďoddball instrumentĒ around here... :D.

I guess Iíll give Craigslist a chance, see what happens. If nothing happens, then on to Plan B...

Thanks!

Johnny K 01-14-2019 11:45 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Acousticado (Post 5948277)
Consider upgrading your forum membership level to charter membership for a nominal fee (as little as $25/yr.) so you can buy and sell in the AGF Classifieds. Do your homework for a bit and you’ll find there are many trusted sellers here. You can upgrade here.

Dang! I forgot about this.

Realbluesman 01-14-2019 12:17 PM

I always like to try the local CL (no fees, no packing hassles, instant cash, etc) first and if no sale, then I resort to Reverb. I have had pretty fair luck with both...knock on wood. ;)

Dino Silone 01-14-2019 12:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Realbluesman (Post 5948354)
I always like to try the local CL (no fees, no packing hassles, instant cash, etc) first and if no sale, then I resort to Reverb. I have had pretty fair luck with both...knock on wood. ;)

Thanks - That sounds like a good way to go.

colins 01-15-2019 02:52 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dino Silone (Post 5948304)
. Iíll try the shop where I bought it - they have a generous trade-in policy, but you have to be upgrading. I donít think theyíll just buy an instrument outright. But itís worth a try.

Your local store may not buy the viola, but they may sell it for you on consignment, where you retain ownership but they have it in the store and try to sell it for a percentage of the selling price (with guitars sold this way the shopís cut is typically 20 Ė 25% of the advertised price). As a minimum they could tell you what they think it is worth (if you are not sure).

Another alternative is to talk to local teachers in case they know someone looking for an instrument.

bkepler 01-15-2019 04:43 AM

Your location seems like prime real estate for selling on Craigslist. Being in the DC area, it has worked for me. Last year I sold a viola on Craigslist for $1k and I've sold numerous guitars there. I bought a flat-topped octave mandolin and see similar instruments from time to time. Craigslist is generally the easy way to do it because it's always "cash and carry". That being said, I have listed some items simultaneously on reverb and offered to sell through there (at a slight increase) if credit is needed. In any case, you should have no trouble moving your stuff. Cash only. Meet at the local library or something. Make people travel to your general location.

JonnyBGood 01-15-2019 05:00 AM

I quite often buy gear on Ebay and if I don't like it they go straight back on Ebay, without losing overall (sometimes I'll actually gain on an item, just by investing a little time in better photos and description!)

I'm surprised Ebay isn't more common in this thread, you get entry level to very expensive niche and everything in between, plus buyer and seller protections etc. Fees are a bit of a bummer but I quite often use special offers to list items which makes a massive difference.

Reverb doesn't have much traction in the UK, nor does Craigslist.

Skarsaune 01-15-2019 05:52 AM

10 miles from NYC? Craigslist all the way. Youíve got a massive population close by.


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