Advice for selling violin?
As a result of an injury and love for cello, I'm attempting to sell my violin / bow. The violin is a Sofia grande, purchased for somewhere between $2500-3000. The bow was $500.
I contacted two shops near Dallas -- one told me my best bet was to try selling it myself. The other offered to try to sell it for $1800, before the 20% consignment fee.
Presently I have them listed together on ebay for $2400, and craigslist for $2200.
You can see it here: https://littlerock.craigslist.org/msg/6291902946.html
Should I stick with this strategy and be patient? Am I charging too much, too little?
I think you're being reasonable, and I think you're doing well.
I don't think it will ever sell on ebay for prices like that, IMHO 90% of the stuff you see on ebay, buy it now, isn't selling.
How long have you been selling? How soon do you need the money?
I agree that your best bet is to try to sell it yourself. Arm yourself with patience and keep the price firm.
One problem is that if it lingers for a long time on eBay or Craigslist eventually everyone will have seen it lingering there without selling, and come to the conclusion that it isn't worth the price. Unfortunately I don't have a solution to this problem.
If you list on Ebay, if it doesn't move after a week or two, remove the listing and list it again for 5% less. Repeat until it sells.
If OP decreases violin price by 5% after every 2 weeks, after how many weeks will violin's price be 0?
Craigslist is different from eBay. Unlike eBay, the buyer has to contact the seller so the buyer can claim the instrument. The buyer can try the instrument at the seller's place. Also, I have heard that reverb.com is a good solution for you.
Also consider ebay and paypal fees + shipping with insurance.
Rocky, it still seems like more of a commodity instrument. For one like that, you can either wait a long time for the right buyer, or discover the market price and move it at that level. If he gets to say 50 or 40% and it's still not selling, then it might just be that a used instrument like that really isn't worth buying without being able to be seen in person, and in that case consignment is probably the best bet, although after costs he probably won't get more than 50% anyway.
My usual expectation is to be selling a student-grade violin for 60% of what I paid. So, if you bought it for $2500-3000, the offer of the dealer to sell it on consignment for $1800 seems spot-on. Their fee compensates for you not having to do the actual work of showing it.
Sofia violins are workshop-made in Bulgaria, and then shipped in the white to be finished in the US. They are student-grade instruments.
good advice, Lydia
Dealers are not fussed about selling low value instruments on consignment. There is very little profit in it for them. They would rather sell a brand new Chinese violin with their 1000% mark up, then sell a used student instrument.
I stand corrected after Lydia's post.
Thanks for the advice. I lowered the price for craigslist to be more in line with what I'd make on ebay -- I'd rather sell it locally anyways.
Trading it in for a cello would be my preferred option, but I'd have to remember where I bought it, take a ~2000 mile round trip, and find some way to convince them that I bought it from them.
I believe a reputable shop will not need to see a receipt. They should have a record of the sale and they should honor their trade-up policy if they have one.
Rather than taking the 2000-mile round trip, if you find a local shop for your cello they will probably take the violin as trade. Might as well ask; at least you'd get the credit for the new instrument immediately instead of waiting for it to sell.
If it's not too personal... what kind of injury made you stop playing the violin?
I suppose it's worth asking if other shops will let me trade it in.