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Thread: What's a good way to get a decent appraisal?

  1. #1

    Default What's a good way to get a decent appraisal?

    I have a Collings MF satin finish from around 2006 that I'm considering selling. It's beat up. I didn't baby it. But it's in perfectly playable condition. No structural issues. Just some scratches and a small nick on one of the points. The neck was a strong V when I got it, so I had that relieved and it's now a "speed neck" I suppose. I see these things listed new for what I consider... a pretty high price, but I'm not sure if that's what you can actually expect to pay for one. I was thinking 2500-3000 but I don't know if that's fair.

  2. #2
    Fingertips of leather Bill McCall's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's a good way to get a decent appraisal?

    List it high. No bites, lower the price. Interested folks will probably want to negotiate.

    You can also check prices from sites like Reverb to see listing prices.
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    Default Re: What's a good way to get a decent appraisal?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill McCall View Post
    List it high. No bites, lower the price. Interested folks will probably want to negotiate.

    You can also check prices from sites like Reverb to see listing prices.
    Thanks! I've been looking around, but I really don't see too many used MFs floating about! But you're probably right. Probably no harm in just listing higher than what it's worth and seeing what people will give for it.

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    Mando accumulator allenhopkins's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's a good way to get a decent appraisal?

    Or, you can go the "$∞ (infinity) or best offer" route, see what level of BO* you attract.

    *"best offer," not "body odor"
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  5. #5

    Default Re: What's a good way to get a decent appraisal?

    When trying to establish current value, the first bit of homework I do is check SOLD listings on Reverb, rather than current listings. Current listings only tell you what the owner thinks it's worth, not the market value. Keep in mind, sold listings may not reflect the final sale price due to the way Reverb's make offer feature works. Below I've linked a Reverb search for sold listings with "Collings MF" as the keywords. Below that is a Collings MF form 2006 which was listed for $3,200 but shows that 1 offer was made. It is likely that the final sale price was less than $3,200.

    Reverb - "Collings MF" - sold listings

    Collings MF 2006 - sold

  6. #6
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    Default Re: What's a good way to get a decent appraisal?

    With some pictures and a description you may be able to get an appraisal from George Gruhn. I do not know what he charges but it might be worth a call or e-mail to him. Good luck.

  7. #7

    Default Re: What's a good way to get a decent appraisal?

    First of all, depending on how old those Reverb listings are, the prices are moot. Right now you'd be hard-pressed to find many MF's for sale, used or new. Things are trickling out of Austin.

    Valuation and appraisal are two different things, and have two very different approaches. If you are looking for valuation for resale, consider this approach (and yes, I do this for a living, and get paid pretty well for it). Take the new sales price which is as listed by Collings. Let's say it's $5500. If it were pristine then I'd say, take off 10% and list it for that. Since you have shaved down the neck (a speed neck is generally just taking the finish down) to eliminate the vee, then you've shrunken your pool of buyers. If I had to guess without seeing the instrument? Take 30% off the new price. List it for that and see how it goes. You cannot go up, but you can lower the price as needed.

    Many things affect price: strong brand names and condition are two important factors.
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  8. #8
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    Default Re: What's a good way to get a decent appraisal?

    The current advertised price for a new MF with satin finish is $5400, recently increased from $5200.

    A survey of sold listings for the same model in clean condition [minimal wear and no speed neck] on gbase [mostly brick and mortar dealers] shows two from The Music Emporium at asking prices of $3500 and $3750.

    A survey of sold listings on reverb shows 3 from private sellers at asking prices of $3000, $3200, and $3750.

    All of those asking prices fall within a range of 55% to 70% of the cost of a new instrument.
    It has been my experience that long-established dealers are more likely to be able to sell at higher prices than private sellers.

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