Are we living in a "Buyer's market?"

IBitePrettyHard

Senior Member
Several of you have recently made reference to being in a buyer's drum market. Is this really true?

I'm not saying I doubt it, there's a lot of used drums on the market and choices for new drums has only grown. But is it distinctly different from 5, 10, 20 years ago?

Has anything changed?

I was just browsing the Facebook Marketplace and Craigslist. I've been seeing a LOT of drum listings that have been up for 2-6 months, and don't seem to be selling (despite some of them being good deals). Perhaps this is a buyer's market, but the sellers haven't realized this, and are not yet willing to drop prices.
 
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MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
Totally. The used market is flooded with gear. If there are 10 drummers and 100 kits, it's a buyer's market. Conversely, if there's 100 drummers and 10 kits, it's a seller's market.

The problem is most people don't get this, and they think their gear is worth more. They list a used Export with B8 cymbals for $1000 and don't budge because they think drums are gold. Then they wonder why the gear doesn't sell. Meanwhile, the guy who sells his Starclassics with B20 cymbals for $500 can't keep his phone from ringing.

Part of it is supply and demand, part of it is sellers not knowing the value of what they are selling.

A used item is only worth what someone is willing to pay for it, and that's the bottom line. Buyers market.
 

wildbill

Platinum Member
Are we living in a "Buyer's market?"

Not as much as 10 years ago during the financial crash here in the US. You almost couldn't give stuff away then.
People were too worried about the job they just lost, and those who still had one were worried that it would disappear.

But ya - there's a lot of stuff available, both new and used. Not all prices reflect that, IMO.
 

IBitePrettyHard

Senior Member
The problem is most people don't get this, and they think their gear is worth more. They list a used Export with B8 cymbals for $1000 and don't budge because they think drums are gold. Then they wonder why the gear doesn't sell. Meanwhile, the guy who sells his Starclassics with B20 cymbals for $500 can't keep his phone from ringing.
I've seen this so many times! They add up the total RETAIL PRICE of every item on their kit (when it was new) and knock 5% to 15% off and think it'll sell, lol.

The problem (at least in my area) is even if drums are priced well within the "Sold" margin from Reverb/Ebay, they still won't sell because the demand isn't high enough. Simply put, the going rate for drums on Reverb and Ebay is NOT the going rate for drums on FB or Craigslist. (at least in my area)

This guy has been trying to sell his Renowns off and on for at least 8 months. I think he was asking 900-1000 at first (very reasonable), but had to drop it even more.


This guy has been trying to sell a brand new Sonor SQ1 snare for months. Dropping it by $20 every few weeks.




Here's some quick examples from the other end of the spectrum....."optimistic" deals like these...

Old Pearl Exports with lots of cymbals/hardware for $800.


Pearl Forum series with B8s for almost $900.
 
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Pootle

Member
It's much easier to sell these days and many people sell the same gear on multiple platforms. Half the problem is that manufacturers are releasing so many different models and people buy fairly safe in the knowledge that if they don't like it they can just sell it on and get a reasonable return. Some cymbal companies have loads of different lines but are they really that different? Remember they are in the business to sell products.
 
Not as much as 10 years ago during the financial crash here in the US. You almost couldn't give stuff away then.
People were too worried about the job they just lost, and those who still had one were worried that it would disappear.

But ya - there's a lot of stuff available, both new and used. Not all prices reflect that, IMO.
For sure Wild Bill. I remember being in the market for a Ludwig Maple Classic set in late 2007. The economy was just starting to slow, and l went into Sam Ash and was floored by selection of used equipment, and much of it VERY slightly used! Got myself a beautiful Fab 4 set in Gold Sparkle, complete with hardware, for a song. Conversely, when I started in the late-1970's, there were very limited options in used gear, and what was available was typically very well used for relatively high $$$. It's still a buyer's market due, I think to , in part, a very different demographic of young people, a much expanded economy since the 70's, and many more manufacturers and their respective offerings.
 
Yeah, prices are quite a bit higher than just a year or two around me, across all the platforms. And there's almost nothing new on Facebook Marketplace these days—I wonder if the algorithm changed a month or two back or if it's just my area, but it's a really stark difference.
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
I don't do FB, so I never visit the marketplace. I do check CL quite often. Some good examples of both sides of the fence are always present. Just this morning I found:

Wuhan 18" China for $75. It's cheaper new.

Pearl Prestige Session Select shell pack with snare and bags, 10, 12, 14, 22 with snare, $350.

Mapex Mars Pro, Zildjian Ks & As, no throne, $1000.

Premier Cabria, 5 piece, shells and pedal, $200.

Gretsch Energy, 4 piece, ZBT bundle, $700.

Gretsch Catalina Club, 4 piece shell pack w/snare, $500.

Prices are all over the place here. Some deals are fantastic, some aren't even laughable. They are stick a fork in your eye ridiculous. Lots of 3 hour wannabes here, so even with the nonsense, good deals are abound.
 

AzHeat

Platinum Member
Things are slow moving for sure, but sellers are also priced way too high in most cases. Everyone seems to want more than what they paid for stuff. The crazy part is, I tend to list things for decent prices and actually do move stuff, but get lowballed like there's no tomorrow. You'd think buyers would gladly give you $600, when selling for more than $800 on GC or FleaBay, but not so. $300 or less is what they offer. There's just no winning
 

PorkPieGuy

Platinum Member
Overall, I think what's selling cheap(er) now are 90s kits, especially early 90's sets that at the time of manufacturing were on the tail-end of the power-tom trend. They are made from great materials, but so many of us can't get past the sizes looking so dated.

It looks to me like there's been a little uptick in the price of 3-ply kits. Even "player's grade" seem to be going for a little more than I would be willing to pay.

People trying to sell locally who refuse to ship are either taking a bath when they sell or they are taking forever to unload them.
 

Mr Farkle

Active member
Prices on craigslist seem high to me also. Maybe people are flipping gear as a business.
A cheap drum kit that I recently donated is being flipped on Craigslist right now. Craziest thing. But I have bought from a reputable flipper who knows his gear and prices right. It’s his retirement gig.

Prices can be very high but those items are on there forever. I’ve seen things re-listed for a full year. Interesting items priced right sell right away. Small kick bop kits go quickly.

I browse Craigslist a lot. Probably too much. :unsure: I use a great little free IOS App called CPlus for Craigslist. It allows you to save searches, favorite items and hide items.
 

CYP47

Member
A cheap drum kit that I recently donated is being flipped on Craigslist right now. Craziest thing. But I have bought from a reputable flipper who knows his gear and prices right. It’s his retirement gig.

Prices can be very high but those items are on there forever. I’ve seen things re-listed for a full year. Interesting items priced right sell right away. Small kick bop kits go quickly.

I browse Craigslist a lot. Probably too much. :unsure: I use a great little free IOS App called CPlus for Craigslist. It allows you to save searches, favorite items and hide items.
Going to download thanks for that tip. Craigslist is truly a wonderland. I put a couple of sets on there for sale and its an interesting experience.
 
A cheap drum kit that I recently donated is being flipped on Craigslist right now. Craziest thing. But I have bought from a reputable flipper who knows his gear and prices right. It’s his retirement gig.
I believe I have dealt with the same guy—he knows his stuff and is quite fair. I'm envious: what a cool gig.
 

RickP

Gold Member
Sadly the Music Industry is in decline and shrinking rapidly , our children are not as interested in taking the time and effort to learn to play a musical instrument . The destruction of the music industry by pirating music has helped grease the slide as well.

There are too many drum companies trying to get their piece of an ever shrinking pie . There are lots of drums out there and just not enough buyers like we had in the past .

We also add in the fact a lot of boomers and collectors are starting to purge and flooding the market with even more gear . These people are trying to get top dollar on gear with very few buyers .

The Uber high end or Uber rare stuff will always find a buyer . The pro level , mid level and beginner stuff will be a hard sell .

It is definitely a buyers market these days and sadly may remain so for good .
 

incrementalg

Gold Member
Going to download thanks for that tip. Craigslist is truly a wonderland. I put a couple of sets on there for sale and its an interesting experience.
Totally. I have a couple of good horror stories about gear I was selling. Nothing better than a guy coming to check out a set of drums, negotiating on price then disclosing he didn’t have any money. Worse yet a guy came to buy a set and tried to short me by $150 by attempting to pack up the drums before I could count the disorganized stack of bills. Then he claimed he wasn’t the guy I was talking to and came on his behalf not knowing the agreed upon price. That encounter almost ended with him getting hurt. I don’t do in person sales any more. I don’t want con artists at my house staking out my drums or my house. Online only now when I need to sell.
 

MrInsanePolack

Platinum Member
Totally. I have a couple of good horror stories about gear I was selling. Nothing better than a guy coming to check out a set of drums, negotiating on price then disclosing he didn’t have any money. Worse yet a guy came to buy a set and tried to short me by $150 by attempting to pack up the drums before I could count the disorganized stack of bills. Then he claimed he wasn’t the guy I was talking to and came on his behalf not knowing the agreed upon price. That encounter almost ended with him getting hurt. I don’t do in person sales any more. I don’t want con artists at my house staking out my drums or my house. Online only now when I need to sell.
This is why you agree to meet at the local cop shop. That quickly weeds out the dishonest schmucks, and keeps the people you do meet in check.
 

Mr Farkle

Active member
This is why you agree to meet at the local cop shop. That quickly weeds out the dishonest schmucks, and keeps the people you do meet in check.
Right. Don't meet craigslist people at your house!! No, no. We don't want them to know where we live.

To the original post... I was in our local drum shop a couple of weeks ago and heard a sales guy telling someone that his used drum kit was not worth anything because "You can buy a new shells for $300 and they sound great." Drum technology is advanced and entry level kit prices are low.
 

mikyok

Platinum Member
Definitely a buyers market. Main reason is the majority of musicians are cheap bastards and complete ass hats to deal with when it comes to selling gear. My personal experience is you get maybe 1 in 5 that is a pleasure to deal with and doesn't mess you around.

There's also no repercussions on ebay/marketplace etc for professional timewasters, there is however repercussions for sellers.

We all treat our gear like part of the family here and appreciate the value of quality equipment but we're not the majority of musicians!
 
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