Ignore low balls, period.
@roxy54 - Yeah, I agree if the offer is 30% of the asking price thats ridiculous but I would still make at least one counteroffer to see if I can get the item sold.
@antigrunge2 - there is no "god ordained right" to much anything in this world. haha I'm just trying to find out why people won't negotiate or at least make it clear in the ad by saying "price is firm"
@mitch2 - You say: "I certainly understand why others choose not to respond to low offers." Why do think it is they don't respond? The negotiation has to start somewhere. If the potential buyer continues to make stupid low offers then its time to cut it off but to simply not respond doesn't make sense to me.
I always respond with a sorry but this is my lowest I will go. I always respond and feel it is my obligation and courtesy as a seller. I treat emails no different than an in person discussion. I don’t take low offers personally as an insult and have made sales this way as well. Some sellers including me can overprice their item and a lowball offer may be closer to real market value and a compromise can be struck. I can’t explain why others choose not to respond with a simple email. Have to ask those who choose not to explain why?
If the offer was a total insult I ignore it. However, for the most part, I will counter. What really pisses me off is when I counter and they accept and then they say I will send the money after my check clears in two days and then they go dark. Why waste my time if you are really not going to buy the component? This happened to me last month.
Respectfully, I don't believe that any realty company, no matter how large can control the real estate market. There are many factors that affect pricing; supply and demand being one of the biggest.
If others want to use their free time responding to lowball offers, then by all means do it. Personally, some offers a too low to merit a response and I find them somewhat insulting really. Then again, I always try to offer what I am selling slightly on the low end of the going rate and hope for a quick sale.
+1! emphasis added !
(1) in 99% of circumstances, the lowball shot across the bow is just a harbinger of a crummy tire kicker trolling, …. with no tangible intention to actually buy it unless he stumbles across an uninformed seller making a mistake or desperate to sell fast in the extreme , …. = don’t waste your time and don’t feed the troll for these fairy tales .
(2) Buyer is now egregiously insulting Seller’s knowledge of fair and proper audio market prices and ignores all fair value decorum conversation = IMO negligible odds of every striking a deal. IMO this is a good reason to just block him out and remove him from every contacting you again which removes a habitual time waster from your orbit .
Yes, I know people "ignore low balls". But why? Thats the point of the discussion
It shows an utter lack of respect toward the seller. You aren't Best Buy, you are just a seller trying to represent what you have to offer transparently at a fair price. It makes the entire transaction reek when someone starts with a lowball. It also shows that they are either dumb, disrespectful, or just sleezy. You also risk getting poor feedback on the transaction.
I lowball occasionally. When I do, I really don't care about the item that much, or if my offer is accepted. I certainly don't expect it to be accepted. I mostly do it in case the seller is desperate or they simply want the item gone. Also sometimes to show what I think of a greedy seller of an overpriced item.
My personal experience when selling is this. When a lowball offer has been made, I usually look at the persons buy/sell history. Often, you find a person who has bought a lot of stuff. More than is reasonable for personal use, and has sold about the same. So I've got a lowball offer from someone who intends to buy and flip at a profit? For me that just reinforces the notion I am asking the right amount as someone else thinks they can also sell for more. And enough to make it worth their while. My thought for the day. Cheers.
I’m absolutely ROTFLMFAO at most of these replies. The Selling Cabal that ordains, "I’m insulted by offers that God Himself deems as Low Balling, therefore the Serf doesn’t deserve the sweat off my brow", can happily be one of those listings I’ve seen on Audiogon for months upon months, never altering their price and never selling, as far as I can tell.
Hopefully their gear is happy, sitting in storage, gathering dust and going unused, while similar gear owned by Audiophiles who understand the art of negotiating finds new homes and starts to bring musical joy to a new owner as the "Circle of Gear Life" is renewed (cue the theme to "The Lion King"). Or....it's all a ruse. They don't want to sell their gear, but listing it keeps the spouse at bay. "Honey, I'm TRYING to sell it -- look, it's been listed for 12 months and I STILL don't have any legitimate offers (cough, cough)!"
I think it depends on how low the balls are.
If I list an item and get some insanely stupid offer I ignore it. If the offer is 1/2 my ask and the buyer gives some justification why his # is what it is (ie: "The Audiogon blue book says...." ) I'm encouraged that the buyer is both real and educated. I can work with that.
Some listings are a joke. When some egocentric Malthusian lists his 20 year old worn out amp for what it retailed for 20 years ago it's nearly useless to negotiate. He's seeking validation and not a sale. These types get all huffy when you offer a real world FMV.
Interestingly, an appraiser told me once that an item that sells at an auction is worth the second highest bid. Considering that a bit it made perfect sense.
Assuming properly exposed to the market, in the end an item is worth what someone will pay for it.
Do you need to sell it? Are you desperate? If so then respond. If it’s a ridiculous offer I’ll respond with a higher amount than what it is listed for. Most of the time I don’t respond. House bids are different, the realtor has to submit the offer, but the seller does not have to respond. The buyers realtor will tell the buyer to make a bid good enough to get a counter to get negotiating started.
I don’t need to sell to buy what I want so I can sit on the piece for a while. Eventually everything sells.
Sometimes peoples expectations of a given price is unrealistic. Years ago I made an offer to a guy whose response was "go to hell". After a month or so he realized my offer was actually more than fair. He wanted to accept it. I told him that his "go to hell" attitude suggested that I take my business elsewhere.
As a prolific seller across a number of platforms for decades, lowball and BS offers are just a waste of time. If they are close, make a counter offer, but in my case I delete or ignore lowball BS, scammers, etc. If you are selling one item and rarely sell it's not an issue, but when you have multiple items listed and you have an endless stream of idiots sending lowball offers it's just not worth the time as these are NOT your buyers.
I respond to every offer I receive. If I find the offer really low, I will just say "No, thanks for your interest." If they are really interested, they will make a better offer. Negotiation can start from there. I have made more than one sale that way. If also helps to weed out people not interested in negotiating.
On the other hand, I had one item for sale. To make the example easy, I am going to say the asking price was $1000. This item routinely sells for $1200 and more. The potential buyer and I haggled back and forth a bit and settled on a price of $850 with shipping split. I made arrangement for this person to pay and waited for some time and got nothing. I contacted the person and was asked if I would take $600 for the item. I told him we already had an agreed upon price. Crickets for a couple of more weeks and then he asks if I would sell for $500. I responded with, "For you, I will sell for $950 and you cover the shipping." Never heard from him again. The item ended up selling for very close to my original asking price, so it ended up working out fine for me at least.
Problem is many sellers inflate their price somewhat expecting that they will receive low offers and their prices will give them room to negotiate a fair price, so what exactly is a low ball offer. Earlier in this post a few mentioned 30%, certainly a low offer, but consider if a seller inflates his price by 15% expecting a buyer to ask for a 15% discount, as they routinely do, a minus 30% offer could in fact lead to a successful conclusion at a fair price. I'm far less concerned with the amount of the offer than the manner in which it is conveyed.
It all depends on how aggressively I've priced the gear for sale. I rarely use that statement, as it does convey a bit of arrogance. Better to say "firm and fair" or "a little flexibility with the price" if that is the case. As a buyer, I am very wary of companies that routinely discount their products by 40-50% based on MSRP, yet somehow make it sound like it's a limited time offer. Seems to be more associated with cables and various tweaking accessories.
Price negotiations are just business. It's never personal. This is a free country and the buyer is free to make a low ball offer as I am free to not take it.
Most sellers on Audiogon take care of their investments and they are not usually your brick-and-mortar brands. With that being said, my rule of "low ball offers" are 15% -20% on 2nd market value whether I'm the buyer or seller. You can always check the "sold and complete" sales of an item on the other website (not the asking or selling price).
There are too many people thinking that they can get flea market deals on fine audio equipment. I would recommend purchasing your stuff from a Fleamarket if you want "low balled" price. But on the other hand, if someone is listing an item at a great price, then jump on that purchase while you can.
There is a very huge difference between a reasonable counter offer and a low ball number. A low ball number is an attempt to get something for nothing and totally not considering market value.
Any potential buyer worth their salt knows how much the blue book value of an item is. Also take into account an item's rarity that that totally changes the blue book value.
I research the current market value (high, average, low, etc.) of any item that I plan on selling, taking also into account condition, having the accessories, original boxes, etc. and place my asking price accordingly. I typically price items to sell so my price really doesn't have my room. Also, I am never desperate to sell.
So, when I receive a low ball number I will completely ignore it. If I receive a reasonable counter, I will consider it.
People watch way too much of these insulting flipper tv shows and think that there is actually a free lunch. I don't have time for insulting flippers or lowballers
If the offer is not totally low-balled I will usually try to negotiate. But, I always respond just to be polite. Are low-ballers a PITA? Sure, but being polite is pretty easy. I always try to remember and take the high road so to speak.
Case in point, just had an offer on a preamp I am selling. The buyer offered a trade for an older pair of Thiel speakers. Interesting idea, but the speakers are worth less than half of what I'm asking for the preamp. I would consider that pretty low-ball! I politely replied that it was an interesting idea but I couldn't do that deal. No sweat on my part. Was the buyer being an a-hole with the offer? Maybe, maybe not. Maybe just looking for a sweet deal.
Let's be nice, people.
@sbayne what I like to do if the offer is insultingly low is retort with over the asking price as much as they went below it. i.e. I’m asking $2000 for some thing and I get a lowball offer of $600, I’ll reply with $3400. Usually I get no reply (perfect) or a reply of “that’s more than what you were originally asking” or “thats ridiculous, you’re insane” to which I reply “now you know how I feel.”