Policies & Frequently Asked Questions
Policies?? We don’t need no stinking policies!!
OK, maybe we do.
PRICING, "BEST PRICE", MANUFACTURER MAP POLICIES, NEGOTIATIONS, ETC
For many online shoppers, this is where the rubber hits the road. We understand that you have lots of options, and we want to earn your business and work with you on pricing, to the best of our abilities.
MAP stands for "Minimum Advertised Price". These are pricing policies put in place by the manufacturer, and they vary somewhat from brand to brand. To stay in good standing with our beloved manufacturers, we follow their MAP guidelines completely. Generally speaking, we can not quote, in writing, anything outside of what is allowed by our MAP agreement with a given company. On brand new, warranted instruments, this is the norm. In many cases, price quoting not only means what we have listed on our site and in online ads, but also extends to offers negotiated in email and IM and chat exchanges. So before you dash off that instant message to us at midnight asking for "best price", we'd like these two little words to ring in your mind: CALL US!
A phone call not only guarantees you our lowest available pricing (even on new instruments, some allowances can be made for cash deals, trade-ins, shipping, etc) but, more importantly, it gives us a chance to talk to you about the instrument and see if it fits your needs.
Particularly with Reverb listings that do not have "Make Offer" activated, we are extremely limited in what we can do on pricing on new instruments, and we can't discuss cash deals or trades on Reverb listings. So put (412) 422-0710 into your phone, and call Steve or Raymond at AMW with any questions you have on pricing!
Of course we offer it! We can lay away any new, used, or select consignment instrument for up to 90 days. We require a “significant” down payment to hold an instrument (we can discuss what constitutes “significant”, but it is essential to remember, that when we accept your deposit, the instrument is taken off-the-market and marked “on hold” – so your deposit is indicative of a firm commitment and is therefore non-refundable and non-transferable.) Once your initial deposit is received, your instrument will be removed from inventory display, stored safely in its original case, and marked as ON HOLD on our website. Upon receipt of your final payment, we can immediately arrange shipping to you. In that rare circumstance where a buyer needs more than 90 days to make final payment, again, we can discuss that. We are all grownups here. We do not offer an approval period or return privilege on an instrument that has spent 90 days on lay-a-way. Surely you understand.
You Betcha!! LOTS of them. Almost 25% of our instruments are ordered as “custom” orders and are sold before they arrive. We make frequent visits to our suppliers, select many of our own woods, and have even developed AMW-specific custom models over the years. We are pleased to discuss custom orders involving ANY of the brands we carry. Like lay-a-way, a custom order requires a “significant” (non refundable and non-transferable) deposit and final payment is due prior to delivery. We go the extra mile. Challenge us!! Like lay-ways, custom orders do not come with any implied approval period and are not returnable.
We like to think that we go to great lengths to match the right instrument to the right player, and as a a result we get very little in the way of returns. All internet sales have a 48 hour approval period. This means that once the instrument has arrived, acclimated and been opened, you have two days to evaluate it. In the event of a return, we back our shipping costs out of the refund, and the buyer is responsible for return shipping. A 3% restocking fee will apply to sales where payment processing fees are incurred by AMW, including credit cards and Paypal. This fee is waived on cash/check sales. We do not accept returns on brand new instruments that have been modified specifically for the buyer (pickups, strap buttons, etc.)
AMW is located in Pittsburgh PA and is legally obligated to collect Pennsylvania sales tax (7%) on any merchandise that is picked up at the shop or shipped to an address in Pennsylvania. New laws are requiring certain States to collect sales tax on out of state transactions. These are calculated automatically at checkout when buying online.
Sometimes. We are looking for high quality trades involving the brands we sell or other modern or vintage small-shop handcrafted instruments. We are generally not looking for trades involving mass produced factory instruments. Truth be told, you are generally better off selling your instrument outright, privately, yourself. Any dealer is going to offer you less than wholesale value on your trade, as he or she will have all of their retail profit tied up in your trade until the trade is sold. Trades are occasionally a win-win situation, but generally you’ll get a higher value for your “trade” if you handle the sale yourself. Ask any car dealer; he’ll explain it. Having offered those disclaimers, we understand there are times when trades make sense, and there are many people who don’t enjoy the hassle of selling their own property on eBay or Craig’s List. For those folks, we will discuss trades. Two areas where we are known for getting creative and helping folks whittle down their collections: We enjoy taking high end acoustic guitars on trade against electrics. We also see the value of taking a high end acoustic on trade so that you can experience the new Waterloo line of guitars. Free yourself from a shiny guitar that doesn’t get played and snatch up a real utilitarian Waterloo guitar from the talented hands and playful mind of Bill Collings. Obviously on a trade, we need to see high quality photos or have the instrument in our hands to evaluate it for value. When trading is not appropriate, sometimes “consignment” is….
DO YOU HAVE A VIDEO/SOUND CLIP OF THIS INSTRUMENT?
We have local musicians into the shop regularly to record demo videos, but the sheer number of new and used instruments that arrive every day make it impossible to get clips for every piece. We do not, generally speaking, record "iPhone clips" or play instruments over the phone line, because neither of these is in any way a fair or faithful representation of a fine instrument's sound. We prefer to use good microphones and good players, in our pretty neutral sounding recording space. If we have a video recording of a given instrument, a clip will be embedded in the listing.
Yes. In a shop with nearly 500 instruments, about 100 are here on consignment. As with trades. we are looking for high quality consignments featuring the brands we sell or other modern or vintage small-shop handcrafted instruments. Think Collings, Merrill, Santa Cruz, Huss & Dalton, Bourgeois, Beard, Tippin, Kopp, National, Stelling, Stiver, Phoenix, Martin Authentic or GE Series, Henderson, Olson, Lucas, Franklin, etc. We are generally not looking for consignments involving mass produced factory instruments. We have about a 98% success rate at selling consignments, and we pay three days after a sale is finalized. We don’t hold your money hostage for a month.
Absolutely. we have a luthier and guitar builder on site and can accommodate most any specific setup request, pickup installation, or custom build.