Fair Pinball Buying/Selling. What is considered good pinball etiquette?

(Topic ID: 216762)

Fair Pinball Buying/Selling. What is considered good pinball etiquette?


By ASOA

10 months ago



Topic Stats

  • 188 posts
  • 93 Pinsiders participating
  • Latest reply 10 months ago by Brazy
  • Topic is favorited by 1 Pinsider

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    Topic poll

    “Is it ok to turn a big profit on selling a sought after pinball machine?”

    • YES! 231 votes
      73%
    • NO! 43 votes
      14%
    • MAYBE! 43 votes
      14%

    (317 votes by 0 Pinsiders)

    There are 188 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 4.
    #1 10 months ago

    When is it not ok to turn a profit in selling a pinball machine that is valuable? If you could sell a game for a large profit would you do it?

    Definition:
    Price gouging is a pejorative term referring to when a seller spikes the prices of goods, services or commodities to a level much higher than is considered reasonable or fair, and is considered exploitative, potentially to an unethical extent.

    21
    #2 10 months ago

    A game is worth what a certain individual is willing to pay for it. A seller can ask whatever they want. It’s a free country. Only thing is most wont like it on pinside so keep the ad out of the forum section.

    #3 10 months ago

    Ethics..Some people dont have it. I may lack in certain areas. Patience, get irritated easy, blah blah blah. But i like to try and be a decent person. Gotta be as a supervisor in the fore service. I want others to discover and practice ethics also. 4 of these things selling on here for over 11k is bull crap.

    Having said that, if a buyer does it for resale...doesnt make me super sick to my stomach. If a dealer did it.... Like the these two listed for 12,500 or whatever it was (14? Don’t remember) . They can crawl down into hell.

    17
    #4 10 months ago

    As long as a game is being accurately represented there is never a wrong time to try and turn a profit on a game.

    #5 10 months ago

    Had a fire fighter under me that wanted to buy the God of War Playstation for his son...couldnt do it because of similar thing. Who knows

    #6 10 months ago

    It's a dink move, but it's fine to try it. It's your property. If no one pays eventually it'll end. It won't stop people from trying, but they'll either have to lower their price or hold on to it.

    36
    #7 10 months ago

    I've been in the pinball hobby for a long time and while I don't like the current pricing, I can't control it. In other words, if someone buys a game and can sell it for a profit, who am I to say anything?

    Price gouging implies that a person has an item that folks *need* and they're taking advantage of the market or situation and charging a ridiculous price. I don't think "gouging" applies to something like pinball machines. Nobody *has* to buy one so if you don't like the price, don't buy it.

    #8 10 months ago

    Screw it then. Put a bs will not sell for over msrp agreement on the crap then, like the SLE’s if its a problem.

    #9 10 months ago

    All good points by the way. It is a free market.

    #10 10 months ago

    Based on some of the replies, I feel like we're missing part of the story. Did something happen, particularly related to the OP, that was the cause for this thread?

    #11 10 months ago

    All I know is the IMLE’s just hit pinside market and people are offering them to us at a terrific value including a 25 percent hike.

    #12 10 months ago

    Bought this Hit the Deck back in 1988 for 200 bucks. Why wouldn't I sell it for its market value if I chose to sell it and make a big profit? This hobby has seen its prices go through the roof in the past several years. Some of us would benefit on the profits from it and would be foolish not to if they wanted to sell their games.

    #13 10 months ago
    Quoted from egyptrus:

    Based on some of the replies, I feel like we're missing part of the story. Did something happen, particularly related to the OP, that was the cause for this thread?

    No Just see a lot of people going ape s**t when they see a game go for more then its MSRP. I saw this first with Houdini. Used Houdini was selling for more then new MSRP. Now Iron Maiden. Last time I got screwed was buying my little Girl a Hatchimal. If you are a parent you will know what I'm talking about. This happens everywhere new iPhones are selling for 3 times more then MSRP when they are first released and sold out. Just see it is a hot topic right now and wanted to have a way people can voice there opinion on the subject.

    #14 10 months ago

    "It's a free market" opinions are useless. Obviously you can, the only question is whether you should

    #15 10 months ago

    The dealers shouldnt

    #16 10 months ago

    I have no issues with what anyone, manufacturers, distributors, or a 3rd party reseller wants to sell their pin for. It's human nature though throughout any product purchase across all categories. People get angered by high prices, but love to see a great deal that benefits the buyer or them in particular. I may not agree with the price, but it doesn't mean I feel it's unethical. It just means that amount of money would not leave my pocket in order to acquire that particular product. Either someone will find utility at that price or they won't.

    #17 10 months ago
    Quoted from ASOA:

    No Just see a lot of people going ape s**t when they see a game go for more then its MSRP. I saw this first with Houdini. Used Houdini was selling for more then new MSRP. Now Iron Maiden. Last time I got screwed was buying my little Girl a Hatchimal. If you are a parent you will know what I'm talking about. This happens everywhere new iPhones are selling for 3 times more then MSRP when they are first released and sold out. Just see it is a hot topic right now and wanted to have a way people can voice there opinion on the subject.

    There is a ridiculous notion that if you are a part of the pinside community you are part of a brotherhood of friendly pricing. Makes no sense

    #18 10 months ago

    I put maybe only because it's too broad to be some free for all and is ripe for abuse.

    #19 10 months ago
    Quoted from zacaj:

    "It's a free market" opinions are useless. Obviously you can, the only question is whether you should

    A better question is why shouldn't you?

    There are lots of knee-jerk, "can you believe these @ssholes" posts about people flipping IMDN LE, but if there's an ethical standard that makes NIB pinball machines different than other collectible luxury goods, how does it work? Would it be OK to sell at a profit if you opened the box first? If you played a few games and decided you weren't into it? After a one-month waiting period? Is there an acceptable profit margin, maybe escalating over time (and if so does that same % apply to classic games too)? And if I resell a NIB IMDN LE at cost should I make the new buyer sign a contract promising they won't sell for more than their cost within X months, or risk becoming an accessory to an unethical pinball sale?

    A lot of ins, a lot of outs, a lot of what have yous ...

    #20 10 months ago

    If people are willing to pay the high prices then sure. I like having money. I would think this is common with all of the higher demand items in this world. If you want in on the action get your machine early. For every machine that people can flip I’m sure there are 2 to 3 that people lose on playing that game.

    Now taking a thing like clean fresh water in an area that was just hit with a natural disaster is not something I agree with. But I don’t consider pinball something in our lives that we need to survive.

    10
    #21 10 months ago

    Etiquette (please update the spelling in the title!) is one thing. Let the market dictate what people will pay. That's how free society works.

    That said, morally it's wrong. There are a lot of people who save up hard-earned money to buy a game only to find that their coveted game has been snapped up by people with the sole purpose of making a profit.

    No matter how you paint it, it's just bad karma.

    #22 10 months ago

    I don't personally agree with sky high prices ( A $3400 NF comes to mind) unless a warranty is included. The way prices have went I don't totally agree with, but it's out of my hands. When I purchased my last one (TFTC) it was a reimport and it needed some love in the lighting and mechanicals but overall it wasn't too bad. We did end up reaching a figure we could agree on and live with. I've overpaid a few times, I learned from it, took the hit and got on with it. These prices make me look much harder and with where I live it's usually an all day road trip to buy one. What roasts my ass worse is when an agreement is made over the phone or email and you get told it sold when you left your house 3 hours ago to buy it...

    #23 10 months ago

    I see no problem with it...... Let the folks take the risk on a 9k game that was never shown, get your deposit in at the first announcement.

    Does it suck if you miss it.....yes. It also sucks if your the " flipper/speculator " taking the risk on a 9k game that most likely will take a hit. If dealers are doing it they are a POS IMO. Period!!!

    Its the way it works now, and its the way its always been, only the $$$$ and risk have changed. To this point and time..... can anyone tell me how many LEs from Stern held well over market value. I gonna take a poke at it with three..... MET "only Mople", Tron LE and ACDCLE

    PS: dont be too much in a hurry to purchase the LE on this one if you didnt get it at retail. I think once the Prem's. come out you"ll be able to get them at close to that again in a year. Hold out for a used one and have $$$$ and fun with a Premium for a bit. Or get your deposit in on the next title ASAP

    #24 10 months ago

    Welcome to the world of collecting and hobbies in general. I just got into this hobby less than a year ago. Bought a couple of older machines for under a grand each and been having fun with it.

    However I have seen the exact same thing happen in the classic car hobby as well. I have seen the prices back in the late 90s early 2000s go completely through the roof, thanks to brain dead tv shows like Mecum and Barrett Jackson, where people are paying way too much for a car that just isn't worth it.

    So people see that foolishness and think....hey my car, or pinball machine must be worth that too. So up goes the price, even though it has been sitting in a barn for 30 years not running and completely rotted out.

    Now, the car market has had the bottom dropped out. Young kids don't like them, (mainly cause it's not a cell phone) so they are not buying them, and I figure the same will happen with pinball too.

    #25 10 months ago

    Buyers need to set a roof on the prices they are willing to pay; Sellers will keep requesting more money.
    I for one have had enough. I continually see non mint, unshopped games going for top estimated values. Low demand titles keep rising.
    New in box premium games orbiting the $9,000 USD range or a stripped down basic version for $6,000?
    One could suggest this is a bubble and most certainly bad for the hobby. I want pinball to have longevity. Arcades (not bars with toys) are not easy to find this day. Younger generations are most likely not going to have the disposable income nor the interest to keep this part of Americana alive.

    #26 10 months ago

    If you bought a lottery ticket for $10 and with the right numbers (theme/code/etc. in pinball) found out it was worth $100 would you cash it in for less?

    #27 10 months ago

    GET AS MUCH AS YOU CAN! GREED IS GOOD!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Watch the video below and live by it every day and the world will be a better place!

    17
    #28 10 months ago

    I think you miss the concept of Price Gouging. Let’s say there is a hurricane comming to Florida and everyone has to leave. If Gas stations doubled the price of gas knowing people need it to leave, even though the price of gas didn’t go up, that is Price Gouging. Trying to sell a collectible item that isn’t a necessity for more than market average price, isn’t price gouging.

    #29 10 months ago

    Yeah, bad price gouging is when people jack up prices on things people need in an emergency situation. We have had some bad hurricanes come through my area in the recent past. People would buy up all the generators in the area and sell that at jacked up prices. That's different than some hot new luxury item that's already expensive being sold for a more expensive price. You don't have to buy it and those that do want to buy are not too concerned about price. If you just wait a year or so, things will settle down and you can find one much cheaper. Things is people are impatient and want immediate gratification. Hard for me to have sympathy for those folks. They enable price gouging so can't really complain either.

    #30 10 months ago
    Quoted from zacaj:

    "It's a free market" opinions are useless. Obviously you can, the only question is whether you should

    people don't die because of a lack of Iron Maiden Le. so sorry but it isn't a matter of if they should or not.

    #31 10 months ago

    Speculative buying and it’s immediate resale at a higher level will only result in higher msrp’s. We’re “shooting ourselves in the foot”.

    #32 10 months ago

    Yeah, I've given up trying to maintain the moral high ground on this one. Though, I think I technically lost that right to play the 'upright citizen' when I allowed my STTNG to sell for 5500 (put the price on it at TPF as a joke...it sold anyways).

    Make your money, describe the machine accurately, let people make their own damn decisions.

    #33 10 months ago

    Ok. It’s not Price gouging then. It’s stub hub for pins? Just like music artists that sell out a concert in two minutes and their tickets are five times more expensive immediately after on an after sales ticket agent that just so happens to be owned by Ticketmaster.

    #34 10 months ago

    I think it's hard to gouge in pinball because pinball is not a necessity. It just isn't. You won't die and your general welfare won't degrade. It's a completely optional purchase, and the market of your fellow hobbyists will establish a going rate whereby prices will trend accordingly. Not every purchase can resell at a profit.

    As far as "profiting" a matter of personal conscience, I've only sold 3 games. One at market, one probably below, and the other probably high. But in all cases I fielded lots of interest and both sides were happy and comfortable, I made a "profit" but felt I had earned it since I took on the risk of project games and spent a fair amount of time on time. No worries... and the one I sold low, eh... I got it really cheap so for karma's sake I passed a deal on, but still made a fair profit on my efforts.

    Anyway, I've no issue with folks asking whatever they like for a game. People will either buy it, or move on... and eventually moonshot askers may see the light and lower to where it finally sells.

    What is NOT OK is high askers who are complete d-bags, such as this post for an example of near-gouging and how NOT to do it:
    https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/for-sale-baywatch-nearly-imamaculate

    #35 10 months ago

    If i was a dealer, I'd just sell all the LEs to family and friends for the purpose of flipping for a profit later. Why would I knowingly sell something for $1,000s less than I can if i just hang on to them for a little while?

    #36 10 months ago

    The only way to defeat the higher prices on the used (and maybe NIB) market is patience. If a machine doesn't sell, and the seller really wants it to move, the price will lower. Unfortunately, most of us in America have lost the attribute of patience thanks to our society. Heck, ever since joining Amazon prime, waiting more than 2 days for a package to arrive puts me in panic mode. We've been reconditioned and never saw it coning.

    #37 10 months ago
    Quoted from NJGecko:

    Etiquette (please update the spelling in the title!) is one thing. Let the market dictate what people will pay. That's how free society works.
    That said, morally it's wrong. There are a lot of people who save up hard-earned money to buy a game only to find that their coveted game has been snapped up by people with the sole purpose of making a profit.
    No matter how you paint it, it's just bad karma.

    Doesn't this only apply to LEs?

    #39 10 months ago

    Phat_Jay above said it best: Speculative buying and it’s immediate resale at a higher level will only result in higher msrp’s. We’re “shooting ourselves in the foot”.

    I think that’s an ongoing concern. If Stern sees that buyers are willing to shell out $10k plus for their sought after LE titles; what’s to prevent them from continuing to raise the prices on these. It was unbelievable how sought after those BM66 SLE models were (even at the extremely high price points).

    #40 10 months ago

    My only issue with the NIB model (especially in Stern's case) is that there isn't any risk to the original buyer since their deposit is 100% refundable. The risk is all on the distributor and speculators are making money off of their backs. I'll admit that I briefly thought about putting down a refundable deposit on an IMDNLE even though I had no intention of taking delivery as I prefer the Pro model of the game.-which it could have helped pay for. I think deep down I feel this is taking advantage of someone (the distributor) and also making the game more difficult to buy for people that really care about buying an LE which is why I don't do it. What's to stop someone from putting in a refundable on every LE game and waiting to see if the value goes up or down before either flipping the game for big money or asking for your money back. There's zero risk and you are gaming the system that is in place.

    #41 10 months ago
    Quoted from Phat_Jay:

    Speculative buying and it’s immediate resale at a higher level will only result in higher msrp’s. We’re “shooting ourselves in the foot”.

    It won't. This is a common misconception. Economically it doesn't pan out like this on products across many categories. The shoe industry, which is a billion-dollar industry, is a prime example of this. A manufacturer with their MSRP and amount of stock has to find the correct balance between just having enough product scarcity to drive demand for their brand and price it perfectly to where the end user can still receive a considerable percentage of the product on day 1.

    Prices won't rise because a small percentage of buyers are reselling something. Prices can possibly rise because 100% of a product line sold out on day 1.

    #42 10 months ago

    How does this even work?

    You put 1k down, then sell it for 12k, buyer pays you $4200 & then gets your spot for the $7800 balance?

    Then what, you guys have a three way with the distro?

    #43 10 months ago

    I don’t like but understand a dealer trying to make some extra $$ on a high demand title. How many dealers are stuck with multiple WWELE in their warehouse? GoTG LE? I’m guessing there isn’t a ton of profit for Stern distributors on a pro model and they need to make it where they can.

    #44 10 months ago
    Quoted from JMK:

    Phat_Jay above said it best: Speculative buying and it’s immediate resale at a higher level will only result in higher msrp’s. We’re “shooting ourselves in the foot”.
    I think that’s an ongoing concern. If Stern sees that buyers are willing to shell out $10k plus for their sought after LE titles; what’s to prevent them from continuing to raise the prices on these. It was unbelievable how sought after those BM66 SLE models were (even at the extremely high price points).

    It's how we got here in the first place. Stern decided to try and extract as much of the flipper profit out of the market after the METLE debacle.

    If you are playing the "long game", like they should, they won't try and keep raising prices on the LE's just because demand is higher on certain pins like METLE and IMDNLE. More and more people are just going to forego pins that are guaranteed to take a $1k-$2k hit.

    The price raising party isn't going to go on forever. The secondary market on all these $8k plus pins is going to be real soft, especially as more and more $8k plus pins hit the market.

    $8999 MSRP and going up each time for every single LE title? That's not gonna end well Imo. While trying to squeeze out the flipper profit Stern might just end up squeezing out their own sales on lesser demand titles.

    The "collectible" titles/numbers, that's a different story.

    #45 10 months ago

    It’s a free market. A game is worth what someone is willing to pay. I’ve walked away many times because the seller thinks the market is at A (generally based out of emotion, or because there was one sale six months ago at $x), and I think it’s at B (usually using active or recent sales). Time is money. You can get B now or wait and see if you can get A.

    What I don’t like is when people in our “community” are not transparent about known defects. That’s deceptive and not playing fair, and makes you an ass. Unfortunately some people don’t care.

    #46 10 months ago

    Find a dealer that is fair on every title. I have, they are out there.

    I went on the cancellation list for an IMDNLE with a dealer that I've bought other games from and got the call when someone dropped out. At the height of the mania they didn't try and jack up the price, $8799.

    Same guys with my BM66LE while another dealer I had purchased from before wanted to jack up the BM66LE.

    While I'll still buy from the other guy, they have lost sales because of that. Was it worth it? Maybe to them?

    #47 10 months ago

    From an individual standpoint, everyone is different and has their own motivations.

    I would never buy a NIB title with the idea that I was going to flip it for $$. I buy Apple stock for that purpose.

    I'd rather have someone in our hobby who really wants one actually get it and enjoy it.

    I also get the fact that some people seize the opportunity to make an extra few bucks. More power to them.

    13
    #48 10 months ago

    If you missed out on a $8900+ LE and can’t live with a $7300 Prem which plays the same because it will just make you unhappy and won’t fit your “lifestyle” then you deserve to be gouged.

    #49 10 months ago
    Quoted from pinnyheadhead:

    If you missed out on a $8900+ LE and can’t live with a $7300 Prem which plays the same because it will just make you unhappy and won’t fit your “lifestyle” then you deserve to be gouged.

    Amen to that!

    #50 10 months ago

    I didn't start buying machines to make money. I like playing pinball. That's it. Sometimes I make a buck or two but I usually loose a few bucks. I'm only here to enjoy the hobby of pinball.

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