Sunday, February 10, 2019
Steinway & Sons plays their customers like pianos
Angry buyers of Steinway pianos say they were duped by salespeople who told them the instruments would increase in value, though they actually plunge in price by 50 percent or more as soon as they leave the showroom floor, according to a report Saturday.
Owners of the ultra-expensive instruments, which cost between $70,000 and $150,000 when new, said salespeople lied to them about what their pianos’ worth in the future, the Hatch Institute reported Saturday.
Customers said they were shown charts of steadily rising prices for new models and were told that buying a Steinway made a better investment than Wall Street stock, the investigative journalism site said.
One Steinway brochure, titled “Your Steinway Investment,” claims that “for more than a century and a half, every handmade Steinway has increased in value,” adding that their pianos were “an investment instrument unique in all the world.”
But when owners tried to sell, they learned their Steinways were worth tens of thousands less than what they’d paid, even when the pianos were just months old or had never been played, the site reported.