Used MTB Pricing

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Posted: Nov 20, 2020 at 7:09 Quote
Wanted to see if there was any interest in discussing used MTB pricing. I personally have purchased several used MTBs for my family over the last year. While there is a shortage of new bikes out there (some of which is apparently driven by manufacturers not wanting to flood market with current year model), it seems to me that the current pricing model is a little dear (if people really want to move their used bikes). I recognize that many folks who can afford a new tech MTB don’t feel the need to sell their old one for less than “they feel” it is worth, but are bikes moving? Furthermore, with excellent entry level bikes out there costing $2300 (YT Capra and Jeffsy), how can bikes that are several years older (even with great but used components) be sold at premiums? There is an article on MountainTreads.com by Zach Reed researching and explaining real world used bike sales and MTB depreciation. The prices on PinkBike and elsewhere don’t reflect this article, but the article more than reflects my experience with finding good deals locally for solid used MTBs. And yes, I have sold several MTB’s over the course of the last few months - boys are growing like weeds. Frankly, I placed a premium on getting them out the door, so sold them for bicycle blue book private party pricing (minus a 2 or 3%) - they both sold within 2-3 days - which suggests that I either got the number close to right for what I was trying to achieve AND that bicycle blue book is a proper valuation tool, or that I could have gotten more if I was willing to wait for the perfect buyer to come along (which appears to be what is going on here at PinkBike). Ultimately I was happy to have them out of my storage area and also happy that decent bikes were finding new homes! So, realizing that capitalism is relatively straight forward on this micro level - love to hear others thoughts!
Cheers, Matthew

Posted: Nov 20, 2020 at 8:47 Quote
I generally buy 2nd hand as it is more economical & environmentally friendly. I have found the prices of used completes steadily climbing the last couple years. You can still find "deals" or "bargains" but you have to be patient and constantly be checking BST forums. Definitely don't find the same amount savings I used just a few years ago...

Posted: Nov 20, 2020 at 9:59 Quote
Few things depreciates faster than a used MTB. This can be a hard pill to swallow for most folks that shelled out $5-9K on a bike that a year latter is worth $2-3K. Those folks tend to list bikes for what they think or "feel" it should be worth based on their original inflated purchase price.

Posted: Nov 21, 2020 at 12:31 Quote
With Covid the bike scene has blown up and i was a newb trying to get in unfortunately. Went to the bike shops and it looked like they got raided, there was nothing left other than a few super high end bikes. I went to the local classifieds and there was choice but the going price for anyting less than 2 years old was a couple hundred off new retail lol its winter now and theres still 10 year old bikes going for thousands

Posted: Nov 21, 2020 at 13:24 Quote
riptiderider wrote:
With Covid the bike scene has blown up and i was a newb trying to get in unfortunately. Went to the bike shops and it looked like they got raided, there was nothing left other than a few super high end bikes. I went to the local classifieds and there was choice but the going price for anyting less than 2 years old was a couple hundred off new retail lol its winter now and theres still 10 year old bikes going for thousands

If you're still looking for a bike, you should check out The Pros Closet online. (They claim to be the world's largest online buyer and seller of used bikes). I've done 3 transactions (2 bike sales and 1 bike purchase) with them in the last 4 months and they've been very honorable to deal with. They were responsive and always pleasant to deal with. I had a small issue with the bike that I purchased from them and they reimbursed me for the cost ($75.00) to fix it at my LBS. With the 2 bikes that I sold to them, they offered more than I had expected for 1 of the bikes and exactly what I was expecting for the other. The best part was not having to deal with the Craigslist scammers.

IMO many of their bikes are overpriced, but if you've done your research and are patient and tenacious you can find some decent deals. Check their offerings daily as they're continuously adding inventory. If you come across something you like, don't hesitate to pull the trigger as their bikes move pretty quickly.

Posted: Nov 21, 2020 at 18:06 Quote
riptiderider wrote:
With Covid the bike scene has blown up and i was a newb trying to get in unfortunately. Went to the bike shops and it looked like they got raided, there was nothing left other than a few super high end bikes. I went to the local classifieds and there was choice but the going price for anyting less than 2 years old was a couple hundred off new retail lol its winter now and theres still 10 year old bikes going for thousands

Don’t be limited to 2-3 year old bikes, especially as a newbie! You can learn a tremendous amount on a decent older hardtail! There are also some great older generation full suspension bikes out there! A lot of people seem to be looking for big numbers in the suspension arena - settle for 100 or 120 and not only will you learn more, but you will pay less!
And don’t be shy about arguing your case to the seller - there is no reason for someone who really wants to move their bike to seek and get a premium - especially if the bike is older!

Posted: Nov 21, 2020 at 19:13 Quote
It's merely a side effect of the pandemic. Supply and demand. Hard for some to pass on trading into a brand new ride if there are buyers willing to pay near-new prices for a 2-3 year old ride. People post at ridiculous prices and if it sells awesome, if not, no loss.

Posted: Nov 22, 2020 at 7:51 Quote
It would be helpful to see sales numbers over the course of the pandemic for used MTBs, both numbers and values. Are bikes moving as much (now versus early summer), and are the premiums being met? Does PinkBike offer this type of data?

Posted: Nov 22, 2020 at 16:36 Quote
I dunno. This might be true, but as someone who was looking to spend ~4-5k on a bike (new or used), I feel like I found several great deals. All of them were on PB.
I ended up with a 2020 Ibis Mojo HD5 that was $7760 originally this year for only 4300 shipped. But there was a Pivot Firebird for 4100 and others like it. I was really torn.
Maybe there’s a sweet spot right around $4k, but I feel like there were definitely deals to be had.

Posted: Nov 23, 2020 at 17:35 Quote
@magicstop:
So those numbers are in line with the depreciation schedule on MountainTreads.com. I think you may have something regarding the upper end bikes. Like someone posted, nothing depreciates quite like an expensive MTB.

Others are seeing odd premiums on several-year-old bikes.

At any rate, nice find and purchase!

Posted: Nov 24, 2020 at 11:44 Quote
Super weird seeing 2 year old sram clunkers with entry level forks selling for 2018 new msrp. but with a bunch of newbies buying it seems fair.


I dont know if we will ever know how much the industry contributed to the price craziness, but it seems like a typical case of just-in-time ordering not being able to scale up quick.

Posted: Nov 24, 2020 at 13:35 Quote
Ive noticed that the "bang for the buck" bikes tend to depreciate a lot less. For example, a bike in that sweet spot range of 3k new might sell for a bit 2k a few years later. Because there's so much value in those bikes, theyr wont depreciate much. Compared to a 6+k bike, the market is smaller and the value is not as high, so these bikes depreciate a lot quicker. The best used bike values are from buying a top end bike. This is similar to how luxury cars depreciate very fast.

Posted: Nov 24, 2020 at 16:56 Quote
Don't forget a bike's value is the sum of its constituent parts. Bikes are a couple easily separable components, they aren't like cars where parting is a whole operation of its own. Assuming a seller has done their research, they know the exact market value of their parts, ideally less some incentive for purchasing complete. Using the same approach a buyer can easily determine what's reasonable to pay and what's not. Some of the prices you see aren't as ridiculous (or the arbitrarily or sentimentally chosen ones, a lot more) when you take this angle.

Bicycle bluebook, etc. are all garbage. They don't effectively account for what people are actually willing to pay (or why). When people are buying for more, no one is going to sell for less just because some goons without access to existent, trending private sale data said so. The only valuation tool is the market: what moves and what doesn't is the bottom line.

Posted: Nov 28, 2020 at 10:40 Quote
HaggeredShins wrote:
Don't forget a bike's value is the sum of its constituent parts. Bikes are a couple easily separable components, they aren't like cars where parting is a whole operation of its own. Assuming a seller has done their research, they know the exact market value of their parts, ideally less some incentive for purchasing complete. Using the same approach a buyer can easily determine what's reasonable to pay and what's not. Some of the prices you see aren't as ridiculous (or the arbitrarily or sentimentally chosen ones, a lot more) when you take this angle.

Bicycle bluebook, etc. are all garbage. They don't effectively account for what people are actually willing to pay (or why). When people are buying for more, no one is going to sell for less just because some goons without access to existent, trending private sale data said so. The only valuation tool is the market: what moves and what doesn't is the bottom line.

So, your first paragraph was helpful to the discussion. My son was looking at a Norco that had been purchased as a used frame with rear triangle common breakage which was replaced with new Norco updated fix. The bike was then kitted with components that were far inferior to the original stock. Son was interested but not for the used values found in BicycleBlueBook, though the seller tried to suggest that BlueBook was bunk, he has since continued to lower the price below stock bike bluebook values (obvious, but again, seller was just trying to get someone who didn’t understand the nuances to bite. BicycleBlueBook and other reference depositories are actually very helpful as long as you understand their limitations. As noted in first post, market prices are what they are - the point of this thread is to try to better understand some of the factors leading to premium pricing and to elicit experiences where they are helpful to further the understanding. All without being snarky if possible.

Posted: 2 days ago Quote
HaggeredShins wrote:
Don't forget a bike's value is the sum of its constituent parts. Bikes are a couple easily separable components, they aren't like cars where parting is a whole operation of its own. Assuming a seller has done their research, they know the exact market value of their parts, ideally less some incentive for purchasing complete. Using the same approach a buyer can easily determine what's reasonable to pay and what's not. Some of the prices you see aren't as ridiculous (or the arbitrarily or sentimentally chosen ones, a lot more) when you take this angle.

Bicycle bluebook, etc. are all garbage. They don't effectively account for what people are actually willing to pay (or why). When people are buying for more, no one is going to sell for less just because some goons without access to existent, trending private sale data said so. The only valuation tool is the market: what moves and what doesn't is the bottom line.

The second paragraph is dead on. Man, if I had a nickel for every time I heard "....but Bicycle Bluebook says". I tell those people to go buy a bike from them (BBB) if they don't like my price. The market is what dictates the prices of things in most cases. Occasionally you come across people who just want/need a particular amount and sometimes its less than market. I agree that prices are overblown and when I sell bikes I try to price a little lower then everybody else but that has its own share of issues because it seems everybody wants a deal so if you price too low people always want lower. The moral of the story is things cost what they are intrinsically worth.

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