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When you’re selling used camera equipment it’s essential that you can properly assess the value of the item before you put it on the market; not only so you can get the best price possible but also so it’s priced competitively enough to sell.
It can be difficult to correctly appraise what your photography equipment is worth when you’re looking to sell however, there are some basic rules which you can follow to help you get a better idea of the right price point for the item.
Summary of the Valuation Process – A Step by Step Guide.
Regardless of what type of camera equipment you are valuing there is a basic, step by step, process that you can follow to find the correct price on the market.
Step 1 – Equipment Identification and Information Gathering.
The first thing that you need to do when you are appraising a piece of camera equipment is to gather as much information as you can about it. You’ll need to establish, or estimate, the purchase date and price of the item when new because it will have depreciated in value over time. On average, a camera will reduce in value by between 5-30% per year, with the greatest amount of depreciation occurring in lower cost models.
You should also find the model number – if it’s a camera or lens. This can be used later in the process for the purposes of comparison with other items on sale.
Step 2 – Value the Item.
There are two main ways that you can appraise the value of used camera equipment. You can either use the market price of other similar, or identical, items to compare with your own and then set the price accordingly. Alternatively, you can estimate how much the item would have depreciated in value since you first acquired it and then set the price accordingly.
Generally speaking though, if you are not a professional evaluator it will usually be far easier to use the comparison method.
Step 3 – Use Your Judgement.
Once you’ve established a rough price range for the item – by comparing its value to similar items – you’ll also need to use your own common sense and judgement. Is the item scratched or marked or is it in perfect condition?
It can be tricky to objectively assess how much of a price reduction you should apply if the camera is scratched or marked but once again you can get a good idea by comparing it to other items on the market.
Step 4 – The Cost of Shipping.
If you are going to sell your used equipment as a private individual then you will need to work out how much the shipping and delivery is going to cost. You may decide to only offer the item for sale in your own country to keep these costs down because worldwide parcel shipping can be very expensive.
How to Find the Correct Price of Your Used Camera Equipment.
There’s many ways that you can use market comparisons to establish the correct value of your equipment. Once you know the model number, brand and the date of its purchase you’ll be able to quickly get a pretty accurate price for your item.
- Ebay. One of the fastest and easiest ways to get a fair value for your used camera equipment is to go on Ebay and check what other cameras of the same type are being sold for.
- Check Classified Ads, such as Gumtree or Craigslist, to find comparable items to the one you are putting up for sale.
- Camera Shops. Many of the larger camera shops, including B&H and others, sell second hand equipment that you can use to estimate the cost of your own equipment. However, you need to remember that in most cases they charge hefty fees to the sellers – often up to 40% – which will increase the prices significantly. This extra cost is justified by the companies because they offer warranties and a returns policy which most private sellers will not.
- Ask a Dealer. If you want to, you can go to a second hand camera specialist and ask them for a valuation in person. Alternatively, you can use a web based dealer who will give you an approximate estimate based on the brand, model and date of purchase.
Where To Sell Your Used Camera Equipment Without Incurring High Fees.
- Private Sales: When you sell your camera equipment privately you will not incur any fees and you’ll probably be able to leverage the highest price. If you happen to know somebody who is looking for a camera then you’re in luck and you’ll be able to make a fast sale. Otherwise, you can ask around your friends and contacts on social media to see if anyone is in the market for a similar item.
- Local Classified Ads: The traditional way of selling camera equipment is through the classified sections of your local media although you will have to pay a small fee for the advert. One benefit of selling your used equipment in this way is that the buyer should be local and you won’t have to pay high delivery costs. Remember though that these classified sections are not targeted at a specific market so it could end up taking a while to find a buyer. However, if you get lucky you can make a quick sale and hand deliver the item yourself although you should probably expect the buyer to try to negotiate the price down a little!
- Online Auctions: Online auction sites are a great way to sell your items fast. You can either set the price for the sale or put it up for auction. Auctioning your items will be more risky because you won’t be able to guarantee the final sale price. eBay’s fees for selling items on the site which will usually be about 10% of the sale price and if you are receiving the money through PayPal you’ll also have to pay a fee of about 3% for using that service.
- Facebook Marketplace. One of the fastest growing online markets is the Facebook Marketplace. There are no fees for selling your equipment on the site and you can control where the items are marketed to so you can keep your postage costs right down. You can even target your local area so you can personally deliver the item yourself.
- Camera Retailers. There’s a lot of camera retailers that sell second hand equipment both on and off line. They will either buy the camera from you to resell or they may sell it on your behalf. However you chose to arrange the sale you will be faced with pretty steep fees to pay – usually around 15-20% of the final sale price.
Trade In Your Used Camera Equipment.
For higher ticket items like cameras you can often trade them in for a discount on a new camera. You can do this with many camera retailers. This is a good option if you want to upgrade your camera while getting a good discount on the sale price. The process is fast and easy and if you do it person you won’t have to pay postage or delivery costs.
Selling Your Used Camera Equipment Will Help You Improve Your Gear.
As technology improves and cameras continue to get better over time you’ll naturally want to upgrade your kit. Selling your used camera equipment will help you to mitigate the costs of buying new equipment or just enable you to keep your costs down.
Make use of social media, online auctions, local photography stores and classified ads to sell your camera equipment. It’s never been easier to sell your camera equipment than it is today and with the help of a bit of research you can accurately price your gear so that it is competitive but still gives you the return that you need.
How do you appraise the value of your equipment?