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  1. #1
    Senior Member AltheCyclist's Avatar
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    Appraising used bikes

    I like to purchase used bikes from Craigslist, etc. I've tried to find the best way to appraise a bike. Usually, I use formula similar to what Blue Books does for cars: Assuming good condition of the bike, take the year and retail value of bike and depreciate it 20% first year, 10% year after. Any comments on this formula? Does anyone have similar or better method to share?

  2. #2
    Time for a change. stapfam's Avatar
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    First thing to look at on any bike is--Is it the right size. Providing it is- then Check the condition of the bike. Still like the look of it then test ride it. Feel OK and everything works then start talking.

    That 1st year will take a bigger drop than 20%. For a couple of years- you have been able to haggle for that amount from new. Then if it was an End of year purchase you could have got a bigger discount.. I would look for nearer 40 to 50% in the first year. Then look at the parts that are worn- drivetrain- wheels for true and wear on the rims- tyres and so on. Some wear is acceptable but if they need replacing- New price to come off.

    Used bikes are being sold for a reason. Usually that the bike is not wanted by the seller. Go in cheap and haggle down with the faults.

    All of that goes out of the window when you find the top end bike of your dreams- in the right size and in immaculate condition. Then it is what you want to pay for it. But still reckon cheap.
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  3. #3
    The Improbable Bulk Little Darwin's Avatar
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    The "appraised value" of used bikes varies a lot by location... The location could impact your formula, and each location has different hot items. For example, in my area a mountain bike will retain more value than a road bike or hybrid.

    Remember that with bikes, typically any warranties are not transferable, so this impacts the value of recent model years more than things like a car, where the warranty might follow to the new owner.
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    People do not seem to realize that their opinion of the world is also a confession of character.
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    I refurbish and sell a lot of bikes; here's the rough criteria I use for pricing. I take the original purchase price (or approximate) and cut it in half.
    I then adjust up or down depending on the bike's condition.

    This seems to work out fairly well; I rarely have to dicker more than a few bucks. I won't work on a bike that needs a lot of parts; I'll rebuild hubs, put on a chain, lube, clean, true wheels...That sort of thing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bikewer View Post
    I refurbish and sell a lot of bikes; here's the rough criteria I use for pricing. I take the original purchase price (or approximate) and cut it in half.
    I then adjust up or down depending on the bike's condition.

    This seems to work out fairly well; I rarely have to dicker more than a few bucks. I won't work on a bike that needs a lot of parts; I'll rebuild hubs, put on a chain, lube, clean, true wheels...That sort of thing.
    I agree !

  6. #6
    Pat
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    Used bikes are a tough sale. People buying bikes want to pick the kind of bike, the size, the color and the size. With a used bike, it takes quite a bit of looking to find something that is suitable. So the buyer has to put in quite a bit of effort. Also on a used bike, there is no support. If one has a problem with a bike purchased new, most of the time the LBS will fix the problem. That is not the case on a used bike.

    I am not saying that used bikes can not be great deals. They often are. From what I have seen, most used bikes generally have less than 5000 miles on them. A well maintained bike will last almost 10 times that long. So on a wear basis, the bike is still virtually new.

    But I agree with Esteban, half price is probably a good place to start. Estaban says he does this all the time, and having experience with this sort of thing means that his word is probably far better than mine. On older bikes with parts that are hard to find, I would say much less than half price.

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    I think the whole thing depends on the purpose. If it is something I am buying to use (have fun with) I might be willing to pay a little more than if I plan to refurbish and resell. If it is just to resell I have to be able to repair and make money. Also is it just used or collectable. It seems as though their is a point at which many bicyles begin regaining lost value as they go from used to collectable. Not all, but some.

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