Lowballing: Do you think it ever works?

Discussion in 'Guitars in General' started by bigfoamfinger, May 19, 2019.

If you made 500 lowball offers (40-50% below market value), would any of them be accepted?

  1. Yes

    65.4%
  2. No

    34.6%
  1. bigfoamfinger

    bigfoamfinger Supporting Member

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    I was thinking about this recently. Lowballers, the ones who offer you $1,000 for your Custom Shop Strat, or $200 for your Strymon Big Sky. The people we as sellers absolutely can't stand. I started to wonder if they throw these low offers out there for items they truly want, or if they put in the time to make it a "numbers game", making insultingly- low offers on just about everything, hoping to get a lucky hit with an un-educated or desperate seller. I honestly wonder if this ever works for them.

    This brought me to a hypothetical:

    Let's say you wanted to walk a mile in their shoes, and you dedicated a couple weeks to low-balling. Your highest offer has to be 40-50% less than what the item historically sells for. Example-- Les Paul Standards that typically sell for ~$1500 used: you would offer ~$800

    If you made, say 500 offers in a 2-3 week period like this, do you think ANY of them would be accepted?
     
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  2. jwguitar

    jwguitar Supporting Member

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    I don't find it insulting when people lowball numbers they are just trying to get the best price. But a lowball number to me looks like and usually is someone who wants to get something for nothing. Often when I send over a more realistic counter offer I never get a response from buyers like this. This is not to say that I don't mind giving reasonable discounts.
     
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  3. Frozen Rat

    Frozen Rat Gold Supporting Member

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    I think that would be a big waste of time. Most sellers over-value their gear rather than under-value it, making low-ball offers of that sort even less likely to be successful.

    Then ones that can be successful once in a while are the people who offer you about 20%~25% less than your asking price, assuming your asking price isn't silly. There's this guy who does that every single time I sell a guitar. If I have a guitar marked at $3299 he'll offer $2200. I tend to know what I can expect and don't bite on those. The one I had listed for $3299 sold two days later for $3000. A lot of retailers do these kinds of offers too. I've sold two of my guitars on Reverb to CME and to Capital Online at about 15%~20% below my original asking price. The reason I did was that I wasn't getting any action and the listings had been stagnant for a week or two. I am not that guy who will sit on gear I'm selling for months. 1 month is my max and then I sell it for whatever I can rather than hold out hopelessly for that supposed buyer who comes along only once a year.
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2019
  4. twinrider1

    twinrider1 Member

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    I don't take it personally.
     
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  5. bsacamano

    bsacamano Member

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    Absolutely. You have to think that with 500, at least one would.
     
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  6. Mpcoluv

    Mpcoluv Supporting Member

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    Asking half off is not a great strategy. You certainly can get 20-30% off accepted. If a seller in unrealistic about the market price you normally can’t make a deal.
     
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  7. 8len8

    8len8 Member

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    I've tried selling oddball boutique stuff over the years where no one really wanted the items, so I had to settle for less than 50% what I paid. I'll only do that if I've had it up for sale for several weeks/months without any real offers.
     
  8. Alchemist XP

    Alchemist XP Silver Supporting Member

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    Definitely works ... it's hard for some people to let go of cash staring them right in the face. I bought a BMW GS 800 once for $3,000 below asking and the asking price was pretty fair simply because I had cash and I showed it to the seller and he just wanted a deal and to be done with it.
     
  9. 6789

    6789 Member

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    I reply with a price that is higher than I originally listed.
     
  10. FlamesAreWicked

    FlamesAreWicked Supporting Member

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    I get them from time to time.. one even being a repeat lowballer.. guess the last half dozen times I declined their offer didn’t give them the hint. Just this week I had a cheap harley Benton 212 cab for sale locally.. it’s the V30 loaded one. They’re around 220 new shipped from Thomann. So he offered 150. I said how’s 175 sound.. they counter offered with 160 if I drove an hour to deliver it. I passed on his offer. About an hour later he says “$120 if you can’t sell it”.. wait, what ?? Lol I said if I won’t sell for 160, surely I won’t for 120... then a few mins after he says, guess I’ll just order a new one then. Sure if ya wanna spend more than what I offered on a basically a brand one..

    Come on man, a single Celestion Vintage 30 is $145 from any mail order company.. I’ll just keep the bastid and use it for a night stand lol
     
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  11. Magnets And Melodies

    Magnets And Melodies Member

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    Without reading all the comments, my first reaction is...

    Yes it works. Nobody would do it if it didn't. Do I like to be low balled? No. Am I willing to pay full price for anything? Also no. There's a middle ground that you gotta get used to being in... Understanding that finding a good deal is best when both parties walk away happy. Blatant low ball offers should be avoided, but that's no reason not to offer less than asking.

    Selling for $2000? If I don't really care that I might not get it, the least I'd ever offer is $1500... That's one of those, "if he takes it I'd be happy to own it, but if I have to pay more than $1500 it's not worth it to me" kind of offers. That's also completely dependant on the going market rate for the item too.... If it recently sold for $1600 and he's asking $2000, I don't feel bad to offer $1500. On the other, if it recently sold for $2500 and he's asking $2000... I won't insult him by offering $1500 (though I'm fully aware that lots of people will).
     
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  12. Vintage_

    Vintage_ Member

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    uhh I'm kinda thinking like around 6 bub. Best I can do. :)
     
    bigfoamfinger likes this.
  13. bossaddict

    bossaddict Supporting Member

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    1 in 500? Yes.
     
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  14. derekd

    derekd Member

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    Really? Why? Someone has offered you $ for your equipment. It isn't an insult, it's an offer. One you are welcome to reject. I've had plenty of low offers I declined.

    I've also been fortunate enough to be in a few situations where I had cash ready and the person needed a deal quickly, for various reasons. In one case, the seller dropped the price a huge amount on a PRS CU 22 with artist package because I could hand him the money immediately. His wife's attorney had frozen their accounts.
     
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  15. RicardoDiazHimself

    RicardoDiazHimself Member

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    Remember going on eBay for a musicman Steve Morse. Mint. Seller wanted $1800. I offered $1400 and thought we could go from there. He refused so I left. A couple months passed, getting g close to Christmas season, the guy messages me, apparently I was the only offer he had. Told me he could do $1400. Told him I didn't had the funds anymore and could do $1100 shipped. He agreed.
    Sometimes people need cash and are willing to go that low.
    A friend bought a Dan Smith 82 RI with red bobbins for $500 from $1500. He sold It for like $4k a couple months after.
    Sometimes people need the cash.
     
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  16. wetordry

    wetordry Member

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    It must work on some, pawn shop has guitars on the wall and tools for sale.
     
  17. daacrusher2001

    daacrusher2001 Silver Supporting Member

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    I totally agree...It's just business. I just got a very low offer for an amp I'm selling. I countered, he countered, etc. - He's close to the point where I'd be willing to sell it. If he accepts my last offer, it's done. Good deal for me, good deal for him. If not, well - I don't need cash or need to sell it so I'll just keep it listed.

    If I had treated it personally I wouldn't have a possible sale.
     
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  18. Tom Fontaine

    Tom Fontaine Member

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    There is an art to finding your low offer. 1000 > 200 is too big a gap.

    Depends on the item. Uncommon things that aren’t very desirable or highly collected can be haggled quite a bit more than highly collected or very rare items.

    I’ve been known to lowball and get a great deal. My mom always said, there is no harm in asking!
     
  19. stonem

    stonem Member

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    It works, probably more than you think. Sales are a numbers game, nothing more. They dont take it personal when you refuse, they just move to the next one.
     
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  20. DucRyder

    DucRyder Member

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    I like haggling

    I'm realistic when I make a "low ball" offer.... say 10%-20%

    If someone sends a ridiculously low offer, I decline with a snarky "Thanks for the generous offer, but I'll have to pass"

    No harm, no foul... just the way of the deal
     

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