About two weeks ago, I returned from a trip out of town only to learn that my wife had bought a used piano for $200. As it turns out, our kids’ school was having a fundraiser, and they were selling their old piano in a silent auction. While we’ve toyed with the idea of buying a decent used piano in the past, the idea fallen off our radar over the past few months… Or so I thought.
What concerned me the most upon hearing about the purchase was that buying a good used piano isn’t all that easy. In fact, entire books have been written on the process. So when I learned that my wife had purchased one on a whim, I was expecting the worst — especially given the $200 price point.
Anyway, what’s done is done, so she arranged to have a piano mover pick it up and transport it to our house. When I got home, I was heartened to see that it actually looked quite nice. It’s an older Baldwin, and the finish is a good match to the woodwork elsewhere in our house. It’s definitely used, but in a nicely aged sort of way. There were apparently some paint spatters, etc. on it when it arrived, but those came off easily, and it cleaned up very well.
As for functionality, there were a few keys that were sticking, but the boys were able to start playing it straightaway. Now that we’ve had it tuned/reapired, it works beautifully. The sound is great (at least to my non-musical ears) and the keys that were sticking are no longer a problem.
How much did we pay (total) for our “new” piano?
- Piano: $200
- Moving: $200
- Tuning/Repair: $110
So… For a grand total of $510, we got ourselves a nice piano that our boys will be able to play for years to come. On top of that, we’ve been told by several people (including their piano teacher, the piano mover, and the tuner) that we could easily sell turn around and sell it for at least $1500. Not too shabby.