Why are harps so expensive

  • Participant
    nadav-kon on #145490

    Hello All,

    Recently we got an appraisal on our old piano, it is a decent student piano about 50 years old. They told us it is worth around 1300$. Then came the question why is a harp so expensive in comparison to other instruments. 1300$ is not even enough for a decent Celtic student harp with 34 strings. not to mention the cost of a pedal harp.

    When I had to answer this question to a client the other day, I said I am not sure but I think that the structure of the harp is unique and hard to make plus the harp industry is much less industrialized then Pianos, Guitars and others because there isn’t as much demand for it.

    I would love to hear your thoughts on this


    carl-swanson on #145491

    Many pianos are not worth very much in terms of market price because there are way too many of them for the market. If you had to pay someone to make that piano for you it would cost thousands of dollars to make. The price of used harps is closer to the actual cost of making them because there is a higher demand for the number available. Even then, most used harps go for less than it would cost to make them.

    kreig-kitts on #145492

    Also, while older harps might get structural or mechanical issues, their sound doesn’t diminish and can improve with age. With a piano, after an initial breaking in it’s all a gradual trip downhill, and the mechanical complexity and potential for breakdown

    Saul Davis Zlatkovski on #145493

    Harps are largely hand made out of good materials.

    Briggsie B. Peawiggle on #145494

    If you price a really good piano, you will see that they don’t sell for that when they are 50 years old. A really good old Steinway costs a pretty penny. Our new Pleyel sold for about $55,000 in 1990. My inlaws bought it and not us. It was a gift to us when my fil got too old to play it anymore. There are TONS of old student pianos — but not that many well cared for, really beautiful (inside and out) old pianos, but the ones there are cannot be had cheaply.


    nadav-kon on #145495

    So I guess my original assumption was close enough to the truth, Pianos are just more common and it has been like that for many many years and this is why they are cheaper and more available…



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