[CAUT] Yamaha Exchange program; pros, cons

Paul Williams pwilliams4 at unl.edu
Thu Jun 7 14:20:52 MDT 2012

And you all know that "new" pianos will need lots of tuning, regulations, voicing, etc….a bit more than the usual inventory, (unless you have old junkers).  Tuning will take up a lot more time……then you get them squared away and somewhat stable.  Then there they go sold off and start all over again.  I don't think I would go for it.  I've seen it happen at some community colleges back the Seattle area with similar programs with other brands/dealers I used to deal with.

Also; when it comes time for the annual "sale" of these instruments, the piano dealer (from my experience) will set it up as a huge "tent" sale with hundreds of their own stuffs they didn't sell that year or years before.  It's a big hassle!! Maybe Yamaha doesn't do that, but others do. Just be careful, or state some solid ground rules before getting into it.

Good Luck!


From: Zeno Wood <zeno.wood at gmail.com<mailto:zeno.wood at gmail.com>>
Reply-To: "caut at ptg.org<mailto:caut at ptg.org>" <caut at ptg.org<mailto:caut at ptg.org>>
Date: Thursday, June 7, 2012 2:44 PM
To: "caut at ptg.org<mailto:caut at ptg.org>" <caut at ptg.org<mailto:caut at ptg.org>>
Subject: Re: [CAUT] Yamaha Exchange program; pros, cons

Having all new pianos is nice, but the problem with everything being the same age is that they'll all need replacing at the same time, creating a big budget problem.  Unless of course you're putting something aside every year just waiting for that day, but that's not the nature of any music department.

On Thu, Jun 7, 2012 at 1:37 PM, Paul Milesi <paul at pmpiano.com<mailto:paul at pmpiano.com>> wrote:
I strongly agree with the point James Schmitt makes regarding dependency.  We, too, are involved in a Yamaha loan program that was put in place just before I came on board.  I immediately saw the inclination to ignore maintenance of our own inventory, which would ultimately be to our great detriment and leave us without an escape route.  I pointed this out to faculty and chair, and we began actively pursuing (meaning I am being supported in) re-hammering, reconditioning, rebuilding, and routine maintenance of our own, older inventory, such as it is.

Good thing, too, because our dealership was sold, the terms of our agreement changed, and, yes, we lost literally 1/2 the loaner inventory in one fell swoop at the end of Fall 2011 semester!  We were not quite as well positioned as I would have liked, but at least attitudes towards working on our own inventory were already adjusted and some work was underway.

BTW, I feel the same way about the All S&S thing, or any other manufacturer's program.  How could a school ever afford to put enough of its own (ignored) inventory in place after one of these agreements  has gone on for 10 years or so?  Loaner programs can be a tremendous help in a pinch, but dependency is a bad thing, IMHO.

On 6/7/12 11:42 AM, "James Schmitt" <pianotenor at comcast.net<mailto:pianotenor at comcast.net>> wrote:

I agree with Joe.  We had the Yamaha exchange program and things worked real well for us when the profit share program with the local dealer was helping our school get some new pianos but needed to be stopped when the flooring fees for keeping the pianos at the school where not supported by  sales when the economy went sideways.   The dealer is and was a good dealer but times being what they are, kept the original deal from working.   The thing that I find so hard about the piano exchange programs to start out with is that they tend to leave the school dependent  on the program without a way out.  The deal we had allowed the school to purchase some pianos via a school sales profit  share that payed the flooring fees but also made way for the school to purchase pianos without using school funds. The goal was to work our way out of the program with an ongoing way of upgrading as time went on.   When folks where buying pianos it worked real well.
James Schmitt BM, RPT

On Jun 7, 2012, at 6:37 AM, Shelley wrote:

Hello All,
I work at a small University where they are considering doing the Yamaha piano exchange program.
I would greatly appreciate any pros and cons that you could offer.
Shelley Byrd Anderson
Registered Piano Technician
All Piano Services
Chicago, IL.  60645

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