Are Used Guitar Sales Soft Now?

TheClev

As seen on TV
Messages
5,026
It's really a great time to buy guitars if you have the money to do so.
Absolutely. I've really taken advantage of the soft market and have built my collection over the last few years. It's definitely a buyer's market out there.
 

fretnot

Gold Supporting Member
Messages
2,350
Absolutely. I've really taken advantage of the soft market and have built my collection over the last few years. It's definitely a buyer's market out there.
Or maybe it's not a buyer's market, maybe it's just the market. Just a thought.
 

smallbutmighty

Supporting Member
Messages
9,037
Over the last 7-8 years I've had no trouble selling anything I wanted to sell. Even stuff with very narrow appeal that I thought would be tough to move. Price it right and buyers will come.
 
Messages
648
This is not a new phenomena, its been going on for several years now. It's a combo of WAY to many guitars and gear, and the tougher economy. Great for the buyer, bad for the seller. Just the way it is. :)
 

Darth Gain

Member
Messages
133
I just bought a PRS SE as a beater, cheaper guitars are better made than when I started out and their are so many ways to do cheap aftermarket upgrades now to improve a cheap guitar that people hang on to their guitars longer now. I couldn't get rid of my first couple of guitars fast enough.
 

Alton

Member
Messages
1,159
We're back to 2007 loan standards...if it breathes, it gets a loan. Cars are a necessity for many people. certainly waaaay more important than a new or even a used guitar. A cellphone to many people is waaaay more important than a new guitar. How's a prospective employer supposed to call you in for an interview?

The guitar/MI market is soft now and will continue to soften over the coming years. Why?
Oversupply (high inventory of new & used instruments)
General and broad lack of disposable income
Future prospects of income are bleak to non-existent
Changing demographics (aging, interest, popularity, boomers dying, lack of interest among the young)

Music instruments are NOT unique among recreational interest markets. Sewing, sports, hunting, fitness and health, travel and more are all suffering to some degree. Even general retailers are feeling the pinch. Sears and Radio Shack claim that if they do not have a healthy Christmas season this year they may end up closing down. Sure, everyone is working hard to keep a smile on their face and painting a pretty picture of how "things are going" but the bottom lines are not looking good and many are struggling far more than they are letting on. The first quarter of next year is going to be filled with all manner of bleak financial news and will not be improving for the remaining quarters.
 
Messages
5,034
We're back to 2007 loan standards...if it breathes, it gets a loan. Cars are a necessity for many people. certainly waaaay more important than a new or even a used guitar. A cellphone to many people is waaaay more important than a new guitar. How's a prospective employer supposed to call you in for an interview?

The guitar/MI market is soft now and will continue to soften over the coming years. Why?
Oversupply (high inventory of new & used instruments)
General and broad lack of disposable income
Future prospects of income are bleak to non-existent
Changing demographics (aging, interest, popularity, boomers dying, lack of interest among the young)

Music instruments are NOT unique among recreational interest markets. Sewing, sports, hunting, fitness and health, travel and more are all suffering to some degree. Even general retailers are feeling the pinch. Sears and Radio Shack claim that if they do not have a healthy Christmas season this year they may end up closing down. Sure, everyone is working hard to keep a smile on their face and painting a pretty picture of how "things are going" but the bottom lines are not looking good and many are struggling far more than they are letting on. The first quarter of next year is going to be filled with all manner of bleak financial news and will not be improving for the remaining quarters.

Perhaps but they don't need iPhones and 40k trucks to get a call and drive to work
 

jerryfan6

Silver Supporting Member
Messages
5,365
I think there are largely two types of potential buyers, at this point. One who has limited disposable income, and one who has plenty of disposable income and has taken advantage of the relatively low prices over the last few years. Neither of these buyers are going to part with their money, at this point, unless something is priced REALLY favorably.

On the flip side of this coin, are the sellers, most of which are expecting top dollar for their items.

Put them together, and you basically have a stale-mate!
 

gtraddict

Member
Messages
1,886
I had a hard time getting rid of a srv strat for 900 in mint condition, and a marshall dsl2000 for 450. Still cannot get rid of a Tokai Les Paul Jr for 550
 

winterblu

Supporting Member
Messages
3,923
The market is soft and many of the sellers locally and online price their gear way too high at 70-80% of new. Bargains still move quickly but those are becoming hard to find in my area. Even if your gear is priced right for the market but not a giveaway it can take a long while to sell these days.
 

NCBobD

Member
Messages
83
Counterfeit guitars are not helping either.
I went a guy's house to buy a Blues Jr. from his Craigslist ad a couple of weeks ago. ($170... I considered that a bargain)... and played his "Fender America Strat" to test the amp before handing over the money. That guitar felt like crap, felt "wrong." He was bragging about the great deal he got on it, only playing $350 for it. I'm fairly sure it was a counterfeit.

A few years ago a co-worker wanted to show me his new "Les Paul." I had bought his Epi LP a year or two before when he needed some money. He opened the "Gibson" case and show me a brand new "Gibson" LP. He had a bit of a grin on his face so I should've known something was up. He told me to give it a try. I lifted it out of the case and noticed immediately it weighed substantially less than my Epi. He soon confessed he'd purchased it off of a Chinese website and knew when he was ordering it that it was 100% knock-off. It looked surprisingly good but just didn't feel right. I never heard it plugged in but I suspect that would've been a give away as well.

Since that experience I must confess I'm a little extra cautious when a deal feels too good. :)
 

Custom50

Member
Messages
8,489
If things are priced right, they will sell.

The problem I see a lot these days with used guitars is people thinking what they're selling is worth WAY more than it really is...
I'm with this guy. I've made offers on things I see locally, I get the: "no thanks it's worth way more!" routine, then watch the price go down week after week until it's right around my offer.
 

Will Chen

Member
Messages
6,238
I'm with this guy. I've made offers on things I see locally, I get the: "no thanks it's worth way more!" routine, then watch the price go down week after week until it's right around my offer.
This. I've been tracking down a specific axe the past couple weeks and know what they go for on several sites as well as in some shops recently used. Several sellers have them priced double the street value and are unwilling to negotiate. Their loss.
 

ksandvik

Member
Messages
6,331
My biggest gripe is that 10-15 year old used guitar prices (pristine or not) are close to the current street price of same models. Does not compute.
 

Crimson Queen

Member
Messages
3,899
I went a guy's house to buy a Blues Jr. from his Craigslist ad a couple of weeks ago. ($170... I considered that a bargain)... and played his "Fender America Strat" to test the amp before handing over the money. That guitar felt like crap, felt "wrong." He was bragging about the great deal he got on it, only playing $350 for it. I'm fairly sure it was a counterfeit.

A few years ago a co-worker wanted to show me his new "Les Paul." I had bought his Epi LP a year or two before when he needed some money. He opened the "Gibson" case and show me a brand new "Gibson" LP. He had a bit of a grin on his face so I should've known something was up. He told me to give it a try. I lifted it out of the case and noticed immediately it weighed substantially less than my Epi. He soon confessed he'd purchased it off of a Chinese website and knew when he was ordering it that it was 100% knock-off. It looked surprisingly good but just didn't feel right. I never heard it plugged in but I suspect that would've been a give away as well.

Since that experience I must confess I'm a little extra cautious when a deal feels too good. :)
In both of those cases, the buyers knew. It's more problematic when the guitar is priced like a genuine article. The counterfeiters are getting good. With expensive items, there is a certain expectancy that the value will be retained or that it will go up. If someone buys a painting for 5 million dollars, it's because they think it will be worth more in the future. In the video I linked, the guy paid $1900 for a fake JEM.

I would not buy a counterfeit guitar, not even for $300. But if I pay $2000 for a Les Paul, it better be a Gibson. I had not bought a guitar since 2004 (before the counterfeits hitting the market), but I recently bought a 2008 PRS SC245 goldtop. I was a little scared about buying it and worried about it being a copy, especially since the store had counterfeit guitars on its walls (identified as such).
 




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