Antique Upright Piano, Antique Grand Piano
Are you looking to buy or sell an antique piano? How much are they worth? Will restoring an antique piano decrease its value?
About Antique Pianos
An antique upright piano or grand piano is generally understood to mean it was made more than 100 years ago. In fact most pianos made before 1915 are considered 'antique'.
There are literally hundreds of antique grand piano and upright piano makers, ranging from rare and prestigious 19th century Bösendorfers and Erards; to old pianos that are, well, just "old" and not worth more than a few hundred dollars.
Here are just a few example of antique piano makers:
Antique Piano Values
And the million dollar question is, what about antique piano prices?
Just because a piano is antique, doesn't necessarily mean that it's worth alot of money.
This is a positive thing if you're wanting to buy one for yourself...but not so great if you're wanting to sell one!
Antique piano values will depend on many factors, such as size, manufacturer, origin, condition, and restoration to name just a few.
Any piano restoration company worth its salt will not give you a price for a piano without first seeing examining it first hand.
Just to give you an idea:
In general, restored antique piano values are worth more than the 'original', unrestored instrument.
The early Victorian pianos can cost between $8000 and $14500 (or higher). The most common manufacturers of this type of piano are Chickering, Steinway & Sons, Kranich & Bach.
These are very approximate, though, and depending on where you live, and the condition of the piano, the prices can vary significantly from this.
Buying An Antique Upright Piano Or Grand Piano
If you do decide to buy an antique piano, I would strongly recommend either searching online or in your local yellow pages, for a reputable piano restoration company or piano dealer that specialises in antique pianos.
You can buy antique pianos on ebay for some amazing prices or even through private ads, however I don't recommend this personally as I have heard too many stories of buyers being disappointed with what they get. It is better to buy from a well established company that specialises in antique pianos and/or piano restoration.
If you do buy from a private seller, I'd recommend hiring a professional to have it valued and examined first, to make sure you're not getting a 'dud.'
If you're looking for an antique piano bench or an antique piano lamp, you can find these in local antique shops or online, and these are far cheaper of course.
Restoring An Antique Upright Or Grand PianoThe term 'restored' means internal and external restoration and rebuilding, as well as refinishing and cleaning. It covers not just the mechanics but the 'cosmetics', so its physical beauty is restored as well as returning it to a functioning instrument.
In most cases, restoring antique pianos does not diminish the value of the piano; in fact, it tends to increase its value, so restoration is considered a worthwhile investment.
You will need to weigh up the cost of the restoration, against buying a new, modern acoustic piano or digital piano.