Used Hockey Equipment: What Is It Really Worth?
Play It Again Sports got its start in Minnesota in 1983, and now has 340 franchises across North America. Each store caters to its local market with 70% of its inventory new and 30% used. We talked with them to find out more about how they operate.
Q: Does PIAS consign or buy equipment outright?
A: Actually, there are three options—buy, trade and consign. Franchises purchase items outright for cash and/or in-store credit (trade). You can also put items on consignment, where you get the money after the store sells the item. Most people—in fact, 95%—sell or trade-in their items outright rather than putting them on consignment.
Q: If you consign an item, what if it doesn’t sell?
A: Your item has 90 days to sell. If it does not sell, you need to pick it up or ask the store to extend the amount of time needed to sell it. For a time extension, the store usually requires the item to be marked down to improve its chances of selling.
Q: What is the average percent a customer could expect to get back?
A: If it’s a newer product (1 year old or less) and in good condition, it might go something like this: Say the product sold new for $100 a year ago and is on sale for $75 today. PIAS sells it used for $40 to $50. The customer gets $20 to $25 in trade value or $10 to $15 in cash.
Q: How much could you expect to get for the most expensive item you’ve invested in?
A: It’s based on the above formula. On the high end for a high-quality, in-demand product, a customer could expect 40% to 50% of the used retail price (in cash). On the lower end, you could expect 25% to 35% of the used retail price.
Q: How do I prepare gear before bringing it in to PIAS?
A: Clean the equipment and make any minor repairs needed. PIAS will not take any products that are unsafe or could cause harm.
Q: What is the best time of year for hockey equipment?
A: July through October, but franchises will buy it anytime. Call your local store to see what they’re currently buying.
Whether a return of roughly 15% to 25% of the original cost is worth the effort of reselling equipment is up to you. If so, load up the car! If not, find a kid in need of hand-me-downs or a program in need of donations (your local Play It Again Sports may have a tip for you). Check out www.playitagainsports.com for more information on Play It Again Sports, and to find the nearest location to you.
Editor’s Note: Thank you to Kristin Carlson, member of Women’s Hockey Association of Minnesota, for editing article.
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