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The Virtual Pianoshop :: Info :: Valuation

Piano Valuation


When giving a value for a piano I usually give three or four figures. The lowest, trade in value is what you could get if you sold it to a dealer; (bear in mid that a dealer will have to move the piano, do minor or extensive work to the casework and action, and store and display the piano for some time before selling). Next is what you would get if you sold it privately - this will be somewhat below what you would pay to buy it from a dealer - and you may have to wait a while to find a buyer. Next up is what you would pay if you were to buy it secondhand from a dealer. The highest value is the brand new list price (See below for examples) If your piano is over about ten years old the new list price is probably irrelevant as it is probably no longer made.

The main factors to take into consideration when valuing a piano are:

Check out the listings of pianos for sale on this site for examples

For more modern pianos a rough guide of percentage of list price is as follows:

Age (years) Value (% of list price)
1 75%
2 70%
3 65%
5 60%
8 50%

This assumes that the piano is in excellent condition.

Top of the market values:

Top of the range concert grand pianos can cost in excess of £60,000. A new 6'8" ( Drawing room size) Bechstein Model B Grand costs about £40,000 whereas a completely reconditioned (soundboard, pinblock, restringing, action) similar piano would be in the region of £20,000.

Brand new a good upright might cost between £2,000 and £20,000 whereas a good renovated upright piano can be had for £1,500 (if it's not a Steinway, Bechstein or Bluthner!)

Middle market values:

Many Secondhand piano dealers buy older (sometimes 20 years old but more often fifty years and older) pianos and renovate them. Renovation varies from a complete strip down and rebuild to a quick check over and clean up. These pianos are usually perfectly good for domestic use and some of the better old pianos or most modern pianos will be capable of taking you all the way through to grade eight. In this market segment you would expect to pay between £500 for a reasonable beginners' piano, £2,000 to £5,000 for a good reconditioned German Overstrung and between £1000 and £5,000 for a modern piano in excellent condition. (These prices are only a rough guide and vary depending on the location of the dealer, the quality of the piano's tone and touch and the condition of the casework.)

If you go to the list of piano ratings you can see my personal rating of different makes.

Bottom of the Market:

At the bottom of the market are the bread and butter pianos of the piano trade. These are usually straight strung overdamper pianos (see Piano FAQs) and are very basic with a basic tone and touch response. You can expect this sort of piano to be reasonably tuneful (if properly renovated) and take you up to about grade two or maybe three. You would expect to pay a couple of hundred pounds for this sort of piano from a dealer, or about fifty to a hundred pounds privately (bearing in mind it may need some renovation work).

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