What Price You Can Expect To Pay for a Used Piano

What Price You Can Expect To Pay for a Used Piano

When you hear the word “used,” it’s easy to be confused by the meaning. 

Used can encompass many different levels of use – gently used, or end-of-life. And for a piano, it can be a little intimidating trying to determine its worth. 

For many new piano players, a used piano is a perfect choice to start with as you discover the joy of playing. But if you begin to look around at the prices of used pianos, it can be a little confusing. 

How can one instrument command such a difference in pricing? 

How much should you really be willing to pay? 


When you purchase something like a dishwasher, you select based on brand, features, and personal tastes. A piano isn’t much different. But when you’re new to music, it can be a little confusing comparing pianos. 

There are many different brands and manufacturers available in all levels of pricing. Some target new players, while some cater to professionals. You’ll see a wide variance in pricing, matching the quality of the piano and how it sounds while playing. 

Uprights are typically lower than grand pianos. In each of the styles, you’ll have different levels of quality – average, better, best. 

In the used market, you’ll have gently used pianos, with some instruments having been rebuilt. 

As you find brands you’re interested in, you can do a little investigating to determine the quality of the brand. You may even recognize some, such as Yamaha or Steinway. But don’t let an unknown brand push you away – there are many high-quality pianos on the market today. 


Brand matters. But the condition of the piano is what will give you playability for months or even years to come. 

There are two things to consider: playability and serviceability. 

When you sit down to play the piano, does it sound good to your ear? Does each of the keys play without sticking? Are they in tune as you move up the keyboard? Even a brand new player can hear when something is off. 

Serviceability also matters. If the piano hasn’t been tuned in years, it might not be able to hold a tuning. This goes beyond appearance. The cabinet may look great, but peering inside can alert you that the piano wasn’t well cared for. 

If you aren’t sure what to look for, trusting a reputable dealer will ensure you get a high-quality instrument. You can also bring along a trained pianist or technician to ensure the piano is truly in good working condition.