Guitar Center is the largest music retailer chain of its type in the United States. Its headquarters is in Westlake Village, California, but you can find over 260 locations operating across the country.
The business also oversees several different subsidiary brands underneath its corporate umbrella.
It controls a website with an e-commerce portal for its locations, Private Reserve Guitars, Music123, and Giardinelli – and several more.
Guitar Center was initially founded in 1959 as The Organ Center. The store sold electronic organs for churches and homes before transitioning to the Vox brand for amps and guitars.
In 1964, the company changed its name to The Vox Center. When that equipment fell out of favor for Marshall gear, the business transitioned one more time to become Guitar Center.
Selling Gear to Guitar Center
If you have used gear that no longer gets used at home, you can sell the items directly to Guitar Center. You’ll need to fill out an interest form at the company’s website to start that process. If the brand is interested in your items, they’ll contact you for an in-store evaluation.
When you fill out the form on Guitar Center’s website to sell your used gear, you’ll need to provide your essential details. That includes your name, phone number, email, and ZIP code.
Guitar Center uses this information to contact you if they’re interested in your gear.
You’ll need to select a store from their dropdown menu to finish the request. Although you enter the ZIP code into the contact field, it won’t automatically detect your closest location.
That’s why it helps to find your nearest store before starting this request.
How to Find Your Closest Guitar Center Location
You can find your closest Guitar Center by following these steps.
- Navigate to the Guitar Center store search mechanism on the company’s website.
- Enter your address, city, and state, or ZIP code.
- Click on the magnifying glass.
- If your initial search doesn’t pull up a store, you can adjust the page’s default filters. The symbol looks like an EQ switch, and it sits next to the arrow.
- Choose your distance to the maximum, which is 100 miles.
- Click on the “Apply” button.
- The new filters will display whatever stores are within the new search area.
- The results populate based on the location that is the closest to your home. You’ll receive the address, phone number, and the closing time of each store.
- If you want to contact the Guitar Center directly, you can click on the phone number link to automatically dial from some devices.
- Once you have the store information, you can go to the interest page, where you’ll fill out the personal details to select the correct location.
Once you have all of the information about your gear inputted, you can click on the red “Submit” button to push through the request.
If Guitar Center doesn’t have any interest in your items, you may not receive a follow-up email or phone call about the gear you want to sell.
FAQ About Selling Gear to Guitar Center
Guitar Center is like any other business. If you’re expecting a retail price for your gear, you’ll be surprised by how low the offer you receive will be from this company.
All secondary market products have what is called a “low-high price.”
When you sell items to Guitar Center, they’ll offer you the low price for the equipment if it is in excellent condition. If you agree to the price, the company will resell it at their store or online for the high price.
That’s how they make money off of the transaction. You’ll get some cash right away in most situations, and Guitar Center can earn a profit by turning the products around to another customer.
Here are some of the frequently asked questions that some people have when selling gear to Guitar Center.
1. What kind of gear does Guitar Center purchase?
Guitar Center purchases all types of vintage and used gear. They’ll accept everything from effects pedals to complete drum kits.
As long as your items are in good shape and usable to another customer, you’ll have a good chance to get a response from the organization to your request.
Some non-qualifying items will not receive an offer when you make a purchase request.
Anything with copyright materials, acoustic pianos, lighting gear, studio furniture, guitar parts, and more are on that list.
For many people, the most surprising item is band and orchestra instruments.
2. What instruments does Guitar Center typically buy?
Guitar Center is in the business of selling acoustic, electric, and bass guitars.
If you have an instrument from one of today’s most prominent brands, you’ll likely get asked to bring the item to your preferred retail location for an inspection.
You can also offer dulcimers, mandolins, dobros, banjos, electronic drums, electronic keyboards, microphones, and high-end drum hardware through the request screen.
3. What condition does my gear need to be in for Guitar Center to make an offer?
Guitar Center requires your equipment to be 100% functional. It must have all of its parts, although the items don’t need to have OEM repairs.
Suppose you have any doubts about the originality or functionality of your items. In that case, it might be better to visit your local store to get the staff’s opinion first before filling out the purchasing request.
If your instrument is not visually appealing, it might not receive an offer even though it could be 100% functional.
4. What if I don’t have a Guitar Center within 100 miles of my home?
Guitar Center will only purchase authorized gear after they perform an in-hand inspection of each item.
If you don’t have a location near your home, there is not an option to ship the products to a store for that inspection.
You must deliver the items after receiving a response from the request form on Guitar Center’s website.
5. How does Guitar Center value vintage gear?
Guitar Center claims to have vintage experts available at all locations during regular business hours to help with instrument and gear evaluations.
You can expect to receive a fair-market wholesale offer for your items, which is why it can feel like the products are severely undervalued in some situations.
If your vintage items are in pristine condition, you can expect to get approximately 70% of what the store thinks it can get for your equipment.
6. Do I need to fill out the request form?
If you have a Guitar Center down the street from your home, you can take the items down for an instant evaluation in some situations.
7. Why did Guitar Center say it’ll take 30 days before they’ll pay me?
Since Guitar Center offers an open policy for accepting potential gear, they are responsible in some communities to verify that the products aren’t stolen.
That means a 30-day hold is put on the item. If it turns out that you purchased a second-hand item that was reported to police as part of a theft, you’re likely out the money and instrument.
8. How does Guitar Center pay me for my gear?
In that situation, you could pursue your losses in small claims court from the individual who stole the guitar and sold it to you.
Although specific stores might have different policies, Guitar Center typically allows up to a $500 cash payment to get released for your gear after it passes inspection.
If your items aren’t subject to a hold, you’ll be paid on the same day as the transaction.
If the amount you’re offered exceeds $500, Guitar Center might pay you by check or a prepaid Visa® card.
Should you choose the latter option, you’ll want to review the fee schedule to ensure you don’t lose a significant chunk of your payment to charges.
The Visa cards handed out from a Guitar Center transaction are only accepted in the United States because they’re issued by MetaBank®.
9. Do I need an appointment to get an evaluation?
If you’re confident that Guitar Center will take your used or vintage gear, you can take the items to your local store without an appointment.
Evaluations are available during regular business hours.
10. Is it possible to get rid of a 30-day hold on a transaction?
If you have the original purchase receipt for the gear you want to sell Guitar Center, you can avoid the 30-day wait that’s associated with second-hand items in some markets.
The staff will inspect your equipment for any dents, scratches, dings, and malformations in the frets, neck, and other common places.
Electric instruments, amps, and similar gear will need to verify that they’ll work. You’re not required to take the offer, especially if there are other stores in your area.
How to Maximize the Price of Your Used Gear
If you want to maximize the value you receive from your used or vintage gear, Guitar Center isn’t always the best option.
Here are some other ways that you can get more money for your items.
It is important to remember that these methods also take more time and effort to complete, so you’ll want to think about the differences between the high and low prices to see if it is worth the extra work.
|Classified Advertising:||• Local newspapers provide low-cost ads that let you connect with people who are in the market for your gear. |
• If you can verify the gear’s quality somehow, you can sell the items for closer to the high price.
|Online Sites and Stores:||• If you have an eBay account, you can sell your gear to almost anyone. |
• You’ll want to determine an accurate shipping cost to charge to avoid taking a loss on the transaction.
• Alternative sites include Reverb and Mercari.
|Mom and Pop Shops:||• Guitar Center might offer up to 70% of the high price on vintage items in excellent condition, but other small businesses might provide a better quote. |
• Some local stores will give you up to 85% value on some things, especially if you trade it for store credit.
|Family Purchases:||• If you know someone in your family who wants your gear, you’ll get a fair price for your items. |
• You can also make your friends an offer for what you’ve got.
Guitar Center provides a straightforward way to get cash now for your used and vintage gear.
If you have additional questions about the process, you’ll want to contact your local store for more information.