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Tips for the Hesitant Used Aircraft Buyer

To buy or not to buy? Advice to help you decide whether to buy that jet...

Terry Spruce   |   1st February 2016
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Terry Spruce Terry Spruce

Terry Spruce began as a freelance aviation journalist in 2005, after working for a well known...
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Having discussed the 2016 outlook for the used aircraft sales market, Terry Spruce asks a selection of dealers and brokers what they advise hesitant buyers focused on the ongoing depreciation in aircraft values?

Rene Banglesdorf, Charlie Bravo Aviation

“If people are that concerned about depreciation, I generally tell them they shouldn’t buy,” Rene Banglesdorf responds.

“They can lease or use charter. If they don’t really need an airplane, or can’t afford one (financially or emotionally), they shouldn’t own.”

Brendan Lodge, JetBrokers & Aura Aviation

“I would ask the buyer why they want the aircraft,” notes Brendan Lodge. “Does the prospect want the use and convenience as a lifestyle/business choice, or do they simply want a financial investment?

“I think that depreciation is here to stay, so the question is, ‘how long is a buyer prepared to not enjoy the key benefits of having their own jet’?”

Scott Plumb, Jetcraft

“There are certainly buyer-favourable deals available now, both in the pre-owned market and from the OEMs," Scott Plumb reveals. "Jetcraft is predicting overall demand will continue to increase over the long-term and this will help counter depreciation.

“Buyers could in theory wait forever on depreciation fears, but ultimately may miss out on the actual value that the right aircraft for them, properly financed, can provide in the meantime.

“Well-advised buyers, purchasing sensibly, will always tend to be in a best financial position possible when they then go to sell.”

Oliver Stone, Colibri Aircraft

“The truth? Prices are falling and that imposes a cost on the owner when they come to sell in the future,” warns Oliver Stone. “Yes, it is cheaper now than ever to buy, but the depreciation is higher than ever, too, so ultimately it costs more now than it did years ago.

“If the need and desire to have an airplane outweighs the cost, it is a good time to proceed. If it does not, then a buyer should not proceed. It is a commercial decision that is different for each and every buyer.”

Summary

The days of buying jets as an investment are long-gone. Just like a company car or fork-lift truck depreciates in value with use, prospective owners must focus on a company aircraft as a business tool, pure and simple.

On that basis, assessing the need to buy in depth. If the business case is there, then irrespective of depreciation fears a company airplane represents unbeatable value to those prepared to dip a toe into the market!


Read more about: Buying Jets | Aircraft Sales Trends | Used Aircraft Sales Trends | Jet Sales

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