Used lenses prices vs. New lens prices

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by ericonoahu, Aug 12, 2010.

  1. ericonoahu

    ericonoahu TPF Noob!

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    Of course this is very subjective and there are a huge amount of variables - it depends, etc - understood. This is just for the sake of discussion, not locking you into something.

    If you were to buy a used lens, and you believed the lens was in working order, free of damage, and testing it contributed to that belief - what fraction of the len price brand new would you expect to begin with as you negotiated?

    In other words, if you were selling a lens you know is in perfect working order, you would expect to sell it for between XX% and YY% of the price for that lens new today. You would start out offering it at YY% and be willing to take as low as XX% for it.
     
  2. Bryce

    Bryce TPF Noob!

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    I don't know percentage but if it is so close to the original price I just buy the new one. So many lenses for sale used are just way to close to the new price and often even higher than the new price. Seems to be a market supporting such foolishness.
     
  3. reznap

    reznap No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I think if you save 20%-25% over a new lens you did ok. I got my Tamron for $250... that's half what they go for new. The guy was a surgeon and just didn't need it.. I was lucky to have found the ad quickly. I sold my kit lens for $80 cause I wanted it gone. If I were to sell any of my lenses, I'd try and get 80% (unless they weren't in excellent condition).
     
  4. Idahophoto

    Idahophoto TPF Noob!

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    I buy very few lenses used for this reason its often not worth it. For just a few bucks more you can get a new version with a warranty. About 50% is all I expect to pay for a good used item maybe a bit more if it was recently bought but deffently no more than 70% or so. Once it hits that mark might as well buy it new
     
  5. Josh66

    Josh66 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    If I had to nail it down to a percentage, I would say 70% of the new price.

    70% seems fair to me (assuming the lens is in good condition) - cheap enough to be worth buying, high enough to be worth selling.

    edit

    70% would be the starting point - for a lens in very good condition. I would obviously expect to pay less for lenses in less than perfect condition.
     
  6. Phranquey

    Phranquey TPF Noob!

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    It depends on the value of the item. If you're shopping for big glass, even a 15% savings can mean a thousand bucks or more. I picked up my 70-200 VR for about $1450, which at the time was retailing for about $1800.... only a 19% savings, but that was enough to turn around and pick up an SB-800.

    For smaller / lesser value items, I like to hit the 60% to 70% mark.
     
  7. mrpink

    mrpink No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Good glass holds its value. Bad glass gets sold for cheap many many times.

    If someone is selling a high end lens for much less than 70% retail, you really need to ask yourself why. A super sharp lens will stay in my bag until I die.



    p!nK
     
  8. ericonoahu

    ericonoahu TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for the replies - very much appreciated.

    I saw an ad on craigslist for just a 35mm f/2 that sells on Amazon right now for 319. The seller wants $325 because it comes with an off brand UV filter and hood.

    I told her I can have precisely the same setup brand new for dollars more than what she's charging. She had said everything cost her $425 when she bought it.

    She said $315 is as low as she can go and I thanked her and apologized for taking up her time or possibly offending her and wished her luck.

    She emails me a few days later asking what I'd be willing to offer again. I'm not even that fond of the lens.

    The responses here backed up my gut feeling on it - I would have thought starting the haggling at $250 and going no higher than $275 would be the way to go but at this point dealing with it is no longer worth it.

    Thanks for the sanity check...
     
  9. Bryce

    Bryce TPF Noob!

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    I kind of laugh when I read this. The story is so familiar. I am glad I am not the only one going throught this.
     
  10. bahandi

    bahandi TPF Noob!

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    For myself, the amount of owners and age of the lens plays a factor in what I'm willing to pay. No matter how mint the lens, multiple owners or many years of wear will make me want to pay very little.

    As for selling, I tend to have the same mentality as buying. Also, I set the lowest price I can deal with, then tack on $50 or so to leave room for bargaining.
     
  11. JG_Coleman

    JG_Coleman No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I work at a pawn shop, so I'm used to buying used items in great condition and assuming that I'm probably not going to sell them for much more 60% to 70% of what they cost brand-new (occasionally 40%-50% if newer versions of said item have since been released).

    You can imagine my surprise when I began looking around for a used Nikon 12-24mm or 10-24mm lens... only to find that people oftentimes try to sell them for only $50 to $100 less than they cost brand-new.

    I'm convinced that these lenses are being sold by people that may not use them anymore, but still have some kind of lingering emotional attachment to their prized glass.

    I'll tell you what... if I tried selling used stuff at the pawn shop at 90% of what the item cost new, I'd run the store into the ground. I realize that a used lens can last and perform superbly for a long time, but while browsing for that elusive, reasonably-priced wide-angle, I constantly find myself muttering under my breath," Damn... price it to sell, or don't bother selling it at all..."
     
  12. subscuck

    subscuck No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I think that's true to some extent, but I think part of it is people looking at what B&H and Adorama sell used gear for, and figure that's what they can sell it for. They don't realize those companies have overhead, and paid less for that gear than you can sell it for yourself, and sell at that price to make a profit. Also, people quite often sell one lens to help finance a new, more expensive lens, and want to minimize the amount of extra cash they need to come up with. Everybody thinks they're sittin' on a gold mine.

    If you can buy a $600 lens used for $500 slightly used, I'd say that's a good deal, especially if the seller pays shipping. OTOH, that same lens 3 or 4 years old for $500, not so much. As the OP stated, there are a lot of variables involved.
     

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