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How to Sell a Used Generator – 8 Tips to Sell Fast

| Articles | January 18, 2013

Before you try to sell your used generator there a few key things you’ll need to know. If you’re selling online you should be prepared to answer a lot of questions, particularly if it is a larger industrial unit.

Often times when people are searching for generators, they want to find the information about the unit in the listing itself. Many sellers leave out critical details, making it difficult to make the sale.

A common mistake is to run an ad with minimal information or details about the unit for sale so that people will call and ask questions. We’ve found the opposite to be true. The more information provided about the unit, the more inquiries it’s likely to get!

1. Take Photos of Your Generator

It’s no surprise that listings without pictures get very little attention. To help the buyer understand exactly what it is that you are selling you should post as many photos as is logical or possible of the following items –

• A full view of the unit
• A view of the unit in its enclosure
• The engine ID tag
• The Hour Meter (which is like an odometer that tells how many hours it has been run)
• A close up of the engine
• A picture of a block panel, battery panel or transfer switch that may be included
• A view of voltage stamp
• A picture of the brand
• Pictures of any “bells and whistles” that come with the unit such as alarms, emergency stop buttons and coolant levels
• Pictures of skids, rubber pads or trailers that might be included with the unit

2. Show a Video
If you want to sell your used generator fast then why not upload a video of it in action onto YouTube and put the URL up on your sales page so that your potential buyer can get a sense of how it operates, how quiet it is and what kind of shape it is in.
This is the “new school” approach to selling power equipment. The “old school” approach used to be to pay for the buyer’s plane fare out to a site so he can inspect the industrial generator in person.

3. Determine How Much Time You Have to Sell

The very first question you need to ask yourself is how much time do you have? At we work with many buyers and dealers around the US that have cash on hand for the right deals. Obviously these buyers are going to offer a lower amount than if you post your generator for sale on the website.
However, if you want to sell it fast and don’t want all the hassles associated with waiting and fielding offers, this quick sale approach could be the way to go.

4. Price it Right

Many first and long-time sellers have difficulty pricing their unit fairly. In fact, sometimes a seller has no idea what to charge and finding comparable units can be difficult.

Nothing gets ignored more than a generator listed without a price. The buyer almost always assumes the price is too high and that’s why it’s being left out.

Here is a checklist of information that you should include when describing your power generator for sale.

• The kilowatts and maximum capacity load of the unit and when the last time the load bearing was tested on the machine
• The brand
• The age of the unit
• Whether or not it has an 1800 rpm or 3600 rpm motor
• Whether it was used for back-up or primary use
• What kind of fuel or fuels it is capable of using
• Whether it comes with liquid or air cooling systems
• How many previous owners it has had
• Where it was installed
• Whether it is in an indoor or outdoor generator
• Whether or not you will sell it with a housing
• Repairs or problems you have experienced with the unit in the past
• Will you be including a transfer switch and/or electronic panel for the price
• A list of all of the alarms, indicators and any special features
• The decibel level of the unit when it is running (this is important if your town has laws about how loud a machine can be before it can be operated in your neighborhood.)
• The basic requirements of the unit including hose and coupling types, fuel tank requirements and maintenance requirements
• An indication of whether or not the unit is noisy
• An indication of whether or not you will be including installation with the price
• Where the buyer can find a good service technician if you are not helping install it
• Who will be paying for the price of the shipping of the unit and how much it weighs, if you will not be shipping it
• What kind of warranty you are offering

Still need help with pricing your used generator? Call us and we’ll do our best to help.

Don’t worry if your price is a little on the high side. If you’re in the neighborhood and let buyers know on your listing that you are negotiable, they will call.

5. Answer Inquiries Quickly

Most generator buyers have a rather immediate need. Your listing could be the first they are inquiring about or it could be the 5th. Either way, your chances of communicating professionalism and courtesy is to reply back to any inquiries ASAP.
Make sure you answer key questions they have and provide additional information where available.

6. Include a URL to the Generator’s Manual

It always helps to point your potential buyers to a URL online that might help them download or print off a manual that has all the information that your buyer needs to know about the machine you have for sale.

7. Provide Service History

While this may not be 100% possible for all sellers, buyers do like knowing a bit about how the generator was used and cared for.

Was it recently serviced?

How often was it maintained?

A solid history of service indicates that the unit has been cared for and will help secure a premium price.

8. Consider Getting it Load Bank Tested

Load bank testing provides an accurate measure of the generator’s output. This is always required by a buyer that is spending a considerable amount on a used industrial generator.

As the seller, this can cost several hundred dollars, but can help the unit sell for thousands more.

We’re here to help

Chances are if you’re selling an industrial generator it’s because you’ve discovered manufacturers do not trade in new units for old. This is why it is a good idea to write the most complete sales profile of what you’re selling, because you will have a lot of competitors out there who also cannot trade in their generators for a new one and will be trying to sell theirs as well.

If you have any more questions or need further information, Industrial Generators has helped sell units of all brands and sizes and are happy to assist via phone or email.

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