Purchasing an Instrument!
Purchasing an instrument for you child can be both exciting and intimidating. Please know that purchasing an instrument is a lifelong investment and should be treated as so. You will need to budget and make a financial plan and commitment in purchasing a decent instrument for your son/daughter. The good news is, once you’ve purchased a decent instrument it should last a fairly good amount of time with general up keep and maintenance care.
First know that there are string instruments out there that are deceiving. In the string world we call these I.S.O’s Instrument Shaped Objects. Please make sure that you DO NOT purchase an instrument off line and that you DO NOT purchase a Cecilio brand named instrument. You want to play the instrument yourself or have a shop owner play the instrument for you to decide if it is the instrument for you.
Again, purchasing an instrument is much like buying a car or a house, it is an investment which you will have for the rest of your life (in some cases, if you choose to go on to school for music you may want to trade your intermediate instrument in for one that would better suite your needs and playing ability.)
Please let me know if you are seriously thinking about purchasing an instrument for your child. I would love to be a part of this process with you.
1. Come up with a budget.
Like I’ve stated before, purchasing an instrument is an investment and should be treated as so. Expect to pay around $400 if not more depending on your child’s ability level. Don’t forget, you get what you pay for. If you purchase a $50 violin expect it to fall apart and not work properly. Make a budget, set a plan and go from there. Tell the instrument dealer up front what you are willing to spend and what your budget is.
2. Be careful of where you buy your instrument from.
Make sure when you purchase an instrument that you are able to speak to someone about it first. Please DO NOT purchase one from Amazon.com, ebay.com and so on. I have seen many instruments purchased off of these websites and unfortunately the instrument is unplayable and the parent(s) have wasted their money. Your safest and most reliable source is to work with a local instrument dealer, try multiple instruments and see which one suites your child.
3. Talk to your child’s teacher.
If you are really thinking about purchasing an instrument please do not hesitate to e-mail or call. I would love to be a part of this process and can even offer assistance.
4. Try it before you buy it.
Really though, try it before you buy it. It is much like purchasing a car or buying a house, with either investment you would test drive a car before buying it and look at the inside of a house before buying it as well. Please, make sure you can play the instrument before actually purchasing it. If you cannot play it before you pay for it than it may not be the instrument for you.
5. Ask questions and plan.
No question is a dumb question. Make sure you ask lots of questions, especially in regards to any programs instrument dealers may have like rent to own, or trade ins. Sometimes dealers will have various purchasing options where you can earn credit and trade up your child’s instrument. Make sure you ask about bows, cases or “outfits” you want to make sure you have all of the necessary tools with your string instrument to be successful.
Remember to stay away from the Instrument Shaped Object!
Here are some reputable websites to look at:
Monaco’s Violin Shop – Owner is fantastic and will work with you to find the right instrument.
www.sullivanviolins.com – Rochester, NY. Dealer is wonderful and has a great trade in policy.
www.sharmusic.com – One of the few good websites and has a trade in policy.