Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Aircraft Selling Strategies

As we get started with 2013, it may be time to take a serious look at selling your existing aircraft. The economy has certainly taken a beating the last few years but we’re starting to see the signs of a turnaround in the aviation industry. Turboprops, long the work horses of the aviation community, are the last to quit flying when times get tough and the first to get back to work when the economy starts to recover. We’ve seen an increase in turbo prop sales in December of 2012 and so far in 2013, and that indicator, among others we watch, tells us the market is starting to recover. Which means the time to sell your aircraft, either to change to a different aircraft that better suits your needs or to sell it outright, is now. Here then, are our top aircraft selling strategies to help sell your aircraft while the selling is good.

Price is the very best strategy for selling your aircraft. It is absolutely imperative that your aircraft be priced properly. Too high, and it will languish on the market as other similar aircraft are sold. Too low, and you risk leaving money on the table, as the saying goes. The right price is NOT the cheapest price and it’s important to remember that when pricing your aircraft. Some buyers are looking for only the cheapest airplane but those buyers are going to get exactly what they are looking for: a cheap airplane. No, most buyers want to get the most aircraft for their money and if that means spending more to get more, they are willing to do so. If your aircraft has unique options or features that command a premium, then that needs to be reflected in the price. How best to determine the price? The good folks at Aircraft Blue Book spend a lot of time and energy figuring that out for you and a Blue Book evaluation is an excellent place to start. Armed with that evaluation, a good market survey, to see and understand exactly what your aircraft’s market is doing at the actual time of selling, will enable you to adjust the price to ensure your aircraft is the next to sell. A good aircraft broker will be able to provide you both an evaluation and a market survey as part of your listing agreement when you contract with them to sell it.

Maintenance condition is the next area to focus on.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Aircraft Sales and the Importance of Photography

A very important part of and successfully selling your aircraft is good aircraft photography. As the saying goes, there is only one chance for a first impression and it is amazing how many times sellers ignore the first impression they are making with their photographs.  Aircraft sales is a competitive market and when a prospective buyer is browsing the internet and looking at dozens of aircraft pictures, it is easy for all the planes to kind of blend together in their sameness. It’s vitally important that your aircraft stand out and the best way to do that is with a great picture.

First, go to the trouble of detailing the aircraft. You’re trying to get the buyer to imagine him or herself in the plane and how exciting it would be to own it and no one is excited about bugs splattered all over the leading edges and exhaust soot all over the back. A clean aircraft looks well cared for and that will only enhance the sale. Second, take the aircraft out of the hanger. It can sometimes be troublesome to find a line tech with a tug and the inclination to pull the aircraft out of the hanger, only to put it back in an hour later, but the positive effect of bright sunlight can’t be overstated.