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Thread: Matching price with quality.

  1. #1
    Daihonmei aquitori's Avatar
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    Matching price with quality.

    Matching price with quality, I know Mr. Ray Jordan posted something in regards to this on a couple of boards. My question is how do you know when you are getting bang for your buck for this fall harvest? Do you take the dealers word for it and just pay the asking price? Even if the price is low or high?....

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    Quote Originally Posted by aquitori View Post
    Matching price with quality, I know Mr. Ray Jordan posted something in regards to this on a couple of boards. My question is how do you know when you are getting bang for your buck for this fall harvest? Do you take the dealers word for it and just pay the asking price? Even if the price is low or high?....
    I think the price is somewhat dictated by the japanese breeders,respectively, as well as other dealers/ breeders in america. [Competition x quality x origin the koi ] play a big role I believe.

  3. #3
    Honmei
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    If you educate yourself, you will know what you are getting for your buck.

  4. #4
    Jumbo jnorth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lilhelper View Post
    I think the price is somewhat dictated by the japanese breeders,respectively, as well as other dealers/ breeders in america. [Competition x quality x origin the koi ] play a big role I believe.
    I haven't been to Japan but have plenty of ideas on this based on many discussions with dealers and hobbyist that have, but since I haven't been to Japan I will leave the breeders pricing alone. As for the dealers...thats a whole nother story. I love shopping for koi. One of my favorite things to do. I will tell you there are very few dealers that I trust NOT to steer me wrong. There is a dealer I know that sells junk tosai kohakus for $300 and will tell you how great they are. One look and you can see they are junk kohakus and thats even if you only understand the rudimentary basics of kohaku. The dealers I buy from would probably have these same koi(if they had any this bad) priced around $50. As for competition, I like to buy from the West Coast. Consider the $300 tosai near me thats worth $50. I'd rather spend $200-300 on a koi from the West Coast and then spend another $90 or so on shipping and end up with a MUCH better koi. So basically you need to know what you are looking at when buying and always buy from a reputable dealer.
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  5. #5
    Honmei
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    Quote Originally Posted by jnorth View Post
    I haven't been to Japan but have plenty of ideas on this based on many discussions with dealers and hobbyist that have, but since I haven't been to Japan I will leave the breeders pricing alone. As for the dealers...thats a whole nother story. I love shopping for koi. One of my favorite things to do. I will tell you there are very few dealers that I trust NOT to steer me wrong. There is a dealer I know that sells junk tosai kohakus for $300 and will tell you how great they are. One look and you can see they are junk kohakus and thats even if you only understand the rudimentary basics of kohaku. The dealers I buy from would probably have these same koi(if they had any this bad) priced around $50. As for competition, I like to buy from the West Coast. Consider the $300 tosai near me thats worth $50. I'd rather spend $200-300 on a koi from the West Coast and then spend another $90 or so on shipping and end up with a MUCH better koi. So basically you need to know what you are looking at when buying and always buy from a reputable dealer.
    Very good point. Know what you are buying.

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    Quote Originally Posted by jnorth View Post
    I haven't been to Japan but have plenty of ideas on this based on many discussions with dealers and hobbyist that have, but since I haven't been to Japan I will leave the breeders pricing alone. As for the dealers...thats a whole nother story. I love shopping for koi. One of my favorite things to do. I will tell you there are very few dealers that I trust NOT to steer me wrong. There is a dealer I know that sells junk tosai kohakus for $300 and will tell you how great they are. One look and you can see they are junk kohakus and thats even if you only understand the rudimentary basics of kohaku. The dealers I buy from would probably have these same koi(if they had any this bad) priced around $50. As for competition, I like to buy from the West Coast. Consider the $300 tosai near me thats worth $50. I'd rather spend $200-300 on a koi from the West Coast and then spend another $90 or so on shipping and end up with a MUCH better koi. So basically you need to know what you are looking at when buying and always buy from a reputable dealer.
    Then again, after reading what you say. I think the price comes from the consumers view, if they feel that this koi is worth x amount of money,and its worth it, they will purchase it, but if not, then they look somewhere else. If everyone did not purchase the koi from japan, what would happen, the prices would come down, respectively..

    Just my opinion

  7. #7
    Jumbo jnorth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lilhelper View Post
    Then again, after reading what you say. I think the price comes from the consumers view, if they feel that this koi is worth x amount of money,and its worth it, they will purchase it, but if not, then they look somewhere else. If everyone did not purchase the koi from japan, what would happen, the prices would come down, respectively..

    Just my opinion
    You are fortunate to live in California where koi dealers are plentiful. The dealers there try to educate their customers so they will understand why buying from them is better then buying from the dealer around the corner. So I would say yes that is true where you are. I live in Virginia. There are not many koi dealers. Their idea of educating is telling you something while knowing you can't go to the koi dealer down the street (cause there isn't one) to get better information. Do you see what I am getting at? Information is only as good as the source. If the consumer buys it thinking it is worth the $300 they paid for it based on the information given to them by the dealer then its only worth that $300 until somebody that actually knows something comes around and bursts their bubble. Recently I've met some other hobbyist in my area and have seen some of their koi. It's amazing how many "future GC's" are in the area. It amazes how so many of these folks have been snowed into believing their pond grade koi are future GC's. Don't get me wrong I have PLENTY of pond grade koi myself and see nothing wrong with that, its just that I am aware of it and these folks are not. It's partially their fault for not educating themselves from other sources and it's partially the dealers fault for misrepresenting what they are selling and it's partially my fault for not telling them (I just couldn't break their hearts). So back to my original point is that the buyer needs to be educated and to add on to that they need to be educated from a reputable source.
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  8. #8
    Honmei Brutuscz's Avatar
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    I would never take anyone's word for it and just pay the asking price. One dealer I went to last year had a beautiful 4 inch doitsu maruten sanke from kase. Caught my eye the second I saw it. I dropped $100 on a 4 inch fish...but I thought it was the right price for the quality. This year I saw the same retailer. More 4-6 inch koi from kase...also excellent quality..how much? How about $400 this year!!! I looked at him like he had two heads. Thanks for nothing...see you next year, Maybe!! How do you justify THAT type of price difference? Even if shipping went up...I can see $125-150 but, $400 was robbery!!! So, no...I don't ever take a dealers word for it. Many of them are simply full of it. Buy what you like, and only pay what you believe it is worth....or leave it for the next sucker!!!

  9. #9
    Daihonmei
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    The mark up on fish that size is typically 4 to 8 times cost. I have seen US dealers pay $50 each for koi ( as a group buy) and then grade them at home and sell them from $175- $350 state side. This is the koi business and why it tends to attact the conman types. Sorry, its true, the fish are innocent however so to stay in the game, learn about value. Doitsu fish, for instance, have no real value in Japan unless they are exceptional. And male doitsu fish are all usually sold in the small sizes as they tend not to last much past three-four years of age. They make great baby champions however and always please the public. Still, don't pay too much for them.

    There is a saying that some well meaning types often share with beginners seeking advice- " don't let anyone influence what you buy, buy what YOU like". This always erked me. Beginners like the thin male glittering fish that are considered trash in Japan and sell for a fraction of what good koi do. Education is your best weapon against being taken advantage of by predator type dealers. And unfortunately there are many of those out there.
    JR

  10. #10
    Oyagoi RayJordan's Avatar
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    Pricing of imported Japanese koi in the U.S. should be based on making a "reasonable" profit with a mark up ranging from 50% to 200%. Hobbyists need to either get an education so they can tell the quality and relative value of a koi themselves or connect with a more experienced hobbyist to assist them or partner with a dealer and build a relationship that over time earns the hobbyist's trust. If you are lucky enough to be able to visit/shop several dealers you will benefit from the experience of looking at as many koi as possible and also from meeting multiple dealers.

    There are honest reputable koi dealers and sadly some that are not. Here are a few of my personal examples. As a new hobbyist I told by a dealer that a certain type of koi were very expensive because they were bred by a famous japanese koi breeder. I learned later that breeder never bred that variety of koi. I was told by a dealer if I bought a small koi and the tancho spot disappeared he would replace the koi. Later when the tancho disappeared the dealer told me he never made that guarantee.

    I have visited a lot of koi dealers across the U.S. in the past 15 years. It is amazing what some dealers or their employees will tell you when they think you do not know better. Buyer beware is always the best policy and it certainly applies to buying koi as well. Buying a koi via the internet when you have no experience/relationship with the dealer is very foolish in my opinion. The internet has allowed some koi dealers who have burned all their local customers to reach out and find new hobbyists to take advantage of.

    One of the advantages of joining a local koi club is being able to learn from the club which dealers can be trusted.

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