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  1. #1

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    How to sell a piano?

    I have been trying to sell my upright piano that I bought brand new 16 years ago. After I lost my job and had to settle for a considerably lower paying job, I was unable to continue my newly started piano lessons. I don't have the discipline to learn it on my own, so I decided to sell it.

    I have been trying to sell the piano for the last 3 years with no success. I tried Craig's list, local community newspaper that had free advertising, tried calling a few piano teachers and music schools, and even a piano store, with no success.

    The piano is in good condition because I get it tuned up every year. The piano tech gave me an estimate of how much a piano like this would cost in good economy. I am asking for about half of that. I have had no success, that is no serious buyers wanting to look at it. I did receive a couple of suspicious sounding responses on Craig's list and they were not even locals.

    I hate selling it at a garage sale price because it really is a very good piano. There is nothing wrong with it, but it's just a piece of furniture in my house. If it doesn't get sold my alternative is to have to move it (costly) to my new place, which I am likely to move into, this summer. The other alternative is to just learn to play it, but I don't have the time and not a strong enough interest at this point.

    I would appreciate any ideas on how to sell the piano.

  2. #2
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    You could donate it to a charity and take the tax write-off. You may be able to write off an amount closer to the true valus.

  3. #3
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    I've sold two pianos with ads in the newspapers and the Trading Post in the past.

    You might try contacting the music departments of your local schools and colleges, if any. Sometimes students are looking.
    "The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources."-- Albert Einstein.

  4. #4

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    That's my suggestion, post it where music is a curriculum. Schools, colleges, and as an off chance, post it in every supermarket in your city. We gave away an upright player piano in good shape cuz no one wanted it. Piano's are those things that those who want them, buy them, the rest try and give them away.

    Good luck.

  5. #5

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    I'd go to the other end of the school spectrum: post notices at elementary schools in your area. Lots of families start piano lessons when kids are in 1st or 2nd or 3rd grade, and quite a few have keyboards at home and learn that piano teachers want the kid to have a piano, not a $200 keyboard from Costco.

  6. #6

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    Is there a school or college near by? I would go and post a print out on a bulletin board in or near the music department and have your number on there, make sure to include a picture and some information. Maybe a student will be interested? Otherwise, I would keep it, why give it away? The tax write off is a good idea if you can end up making it work for you.
    -Brian
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  7. #7

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    I am definitely not going to give it away. If I can't sell it, it stays with me. Thanks for all the suggestions. There are dozens of schools and colleges in the Phoenix metro area. The distances are huge, so it's not always easy to drive to a place to post 'for sale' signs.

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by Vash01 View Post
    I am definitely not going to give it away. If I can't sell it, it stays with me. Thanks for all the suggestions. There are dozens of schools and colleges in the Phoenix metro area. The distances are huge, so it's not always easy to drive to a place to post 'for sale' signs.
    Of course, I wasn't being literal when I said "why give it away?" I meant why sell it for such a huge loss that you feel like you are giving it away.
    -Brian
    "Michelle would never be caught with sausage grease staining her Vera Wang." - rfisher

  9. #9

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    Did you let your former teacher know? I got my first piano (for free actually) from a friend of my piano teacher. When I felt like I had outgrown it (it was a little spinet) I gave it to another student of my teacher. Or maybe you teacher will let her friends who are also teachers know.

    I had the impression that there is not much of a market for used pianos, but for your sake, I hope I am wrong. I bought my studio upright from a music store. It had been leant to a school for a year so I got something like 35-40% off the price of a new one, and still got the original full warranty. Plus two free tunings. Offers like that make it hard to sell a used piano, I think.

  10. #10

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    My empty-nest sister had a similar experience when she moved out of her house. She had an upright piano that she couldn't even donate to a church or school, apparently they all use the portable electronic keyboards now.

    Fortunately the person who bought her house had a young child who expressed an interest in piano lessons, so she was able to leave it behind.

  11. #11

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    Quote Originally Posted by pat c View Post
    That's my suggestion, post it where music is a curriculum. Schools, colleges, and as an off chance, post it in every supermarket in your city. We gave away an upright player piano in good shape cuz no one wanted it. Piano's are those things that those who want them, buy them, the rest try and give them away.

    Good luck.
    This - the lobbys of music schools are the best place. What brand/model is your piano if you don't mind saying? Pianos of reliable brands are so much easier to sell - yamaha/kawaï keep their value really well, as do the German brands for the more expensive uprights...
    If you have a Steinway, it's a whole different kettle of fish but I doubt you'd have bought one of those if you were just beginning

  12. #12

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    Quote Originally Posted by millyskate View Post
    This - the lobbys of music schools are the best place. What brand/model is your piano if you don't mind saying? Pianos of reliable brands are so much easier to sell - yamaha/kawaï keep their value really well, as do the German brands for the more expensive uprights...
    If you have a Steinway, it's a whole different kettle of fish but I doubt you'd have bought one of those if you were just beginning
    It's a Kohler-Campbell.

    I guess I should take one Sat. afternoon off and post some 'piano for sale' flyers.

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