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I want to sell a guitar, but I would like to know:

  • Where are good places to sell a guitar? Online? Guitar stores?
  • What is a good way to work out the value of the guitar?
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1  
Btw what type of guitar is it? –  DRL Jan 25 '11 at 8:21

6 Answers 6

up vote 13 down vote accepted

In my opinion the the quickest and easiest way to find a selling value for a guitar is to:

  • Go to ebay, and search the model.
  • Look at what the 'buy it now' prices are, or what people are bidding.

You could also check the small ads in the back of guitar magazines. 'Guitarist' run back page ads, and can be very useful in determining the value of a piece of guitar related gear.

Selling online in my opinion would be the best bet. Use eBay or another reputed auction site. Remember to post lots of pictures and information, being honest about the instrument and posting a reasonable price.

Link: How to sell guitars on eBay

You can try guitar stores, but they can be very picky about what they do/don't take, particularly if the instrument is in less that near-perfect condition. Pawnshops are another route, as they are usually a bit less restrictive, but will probably not give you an altogether fair price for it.

The worst thing to do is to take it to a car-boot sale. Here people expect prices to be low, so you won't be getting the best price for your guitar.

Hope this helps.

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3  
Don't trust "Buy it now" prices. Those are often wildly speculative as people throw out a crazy price hoping someone will bite. Track some active auctions and watch where they end up. After several of them you'll have a decent idea for a price. Also, eBay recommends certain days for ending auctions as the prices will be better, so read their recommendations and compare with what you see at the end of the auctions, and adjust your expectations accordingly. –  Anonymous Jan 24 '11 at 3:23
    
Also consider TheGearPage as a place to sell your stuff. It's a more trustworthy community than craigslist, and you don't have to go through all the fee mumbo jumbo that FleaBay asks of you. –  Jduv Jan 30 '11 at 15:59
    
Whenever browsing eBay to price things, I search the completed listings. If someone's vintage guitar he's asking $2,500 for last sold for $800, I know not to be surprised later on. –  Kaji Aug 2 at 12:49

Harmony-central.com is a good place. They have a Classifieds section I bought my first Gibson Les Paul from there. A store will give you next to nothing for it. My 900$ would only fetch about 250 when I asked at Willis Music. Not bad mouthing them, but just goes to show you about retail!!

Ebay, Harmony-Central and Craigslist are good options.

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Yeah retail shops will generally only buy at about half what they want to sell it for, unless you have something really special, and even then only specialist shops with make you on offer. –  DRL Jan 24 '11 at 6:23

Go check out http://rexbass.blogspot.com/. Rex has 5 blog posts about selling gear online. You can find links for part 1 - 5 in the right hand rail.

Generally guitar stores will "act" like a pawn shop when they buy your gear. Often times you won't get anywhere near the $ you'd get if you were to sell it yourself.

Another option is to consign you instrument at a local shop if they allow it. In this case you're not selling your gear to the shop... they sell it for you and take a cut of the sale price. This will generally yield quite a bit more money than selling it to them outright.

The Gear Page is another online community (alone w/ craigslist, ebay and harmony central) where you can sell your gear. The URL is: http://www.thegearpage.net/board/forumdisplay.php?f=22 . That forum's quite active & the only caveat is that you need to be a sponsoring member to post in the for sale section (about $20/yr).

Working out the value is just research. You can scour forums to get a flavor for what similar items have been selling for or check ebay's completed listings.

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+1 for TGP mention –  Jduv Jan 30 '11 at 16:27

Another optional route in the US is to donate it and get the money back as a tax write off... I'm not sure how the rules change state to state but in North Carolina if you find a school that will accept it you can get a form to use as a tax write off that will get you a pretty accurate value of what it's worth. The only downside is that you don't get your money back right then.

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Craigslist or consignment are both good ideas because it allows a future buyer to actually try the instrument before they purchase it.

It's probably not that much of an issue for instruments priced at around a few hundred USD, but when that turns into thousands of USD, buyers might be reluctant to purchase at online stores--like ebay--without trying it, unless the seller has a fair return policy.

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Here in the flemish part of belgium there's a rather large (over 5000 people) facebook group to sell/trade second hand guitar/music gear to eachother. It's invite only and that means the chances for frauds / scams are a lot smaller.

The cool thing is that everyone lives closeby so it's easy to come take a look at that obscure guitar/ pedal /...

Find out if there is one of those groups near you, and if not, start one, you might make a lot of new friends in the music scene around you doing so!

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