Ball Pythons: The Truth About the Market is a guest article which wasn’t written for the Reptile Apartment Group. It was written in response to the many discussions all over the internet regarding the Ball Python Market as it stands today. A colleague of ours shared this on their wall and well John contacted Wayne of Playboid Reptiles and received permission to post what we think nails this topic on the head!Soapbox post: The ball python market is like a roller coaster. What’s worth one thing one day is worth something else the next day. Basically everything is worth what someone is willing to pay and how desperate someone is willing to sell.
That said I figure for the sake of length of the post there’s 4 kinds of breeders:
- The “Big Guys” – These guys do this for a living. People come to shows from miles away just to see them. They have employees, free-standing facilities, and this is their only source of income. I’ve notice recently years, it seems most of their stuff goes overseas because they market there is MUCH better than here in the states.
- The middle men. A basement breeder. Rows of racks that fill the basement. They have another job, but they hope the snakes let them buy a Cadillac instead of the comparable Chevy (Escalade vs Tahoe for example) model. They know they’ll never quit their job doing this, but they love it and making cool shit keeps them in the hobby.
- The “Get Rich Quick Idiot”. This is the guy that goes to a big show, sees $10k+ price tags on things, asks a couple of questions, dumps $30k in one shot and then when he doesn’t produce shit or doesn’t make $200k his first year, he panics and sells all his shit for half what everyone else is asking and a fraction of what he paid.
- The true hobbyist. These guys have 10 snakes, make 4 clutches and don’t care what they get for the animals because it’s not about money. They have no way to house half what they produce so they usually dump to their bigger breeding friend or the pet store. I respect these guys.
So here’s the point. The idiots that are #3 and the cool people that are #4 don’t dictate the price of stuff. Just because you see one ad on Kingsnake selling a Mystic Potion for $300 doesn’t mean Mystic Potions are suddenly $300. And if you’re making me an offer for one of my animals, I don’t give a shit what someone else is selling it for. GO BUY IT FROM THEM THEN! Am I willing to negotiate, yes. Are my prices rock solid, no. But don’t get pissed and try to justify why I should sell at the price you’re willing to pay if I tell you your offer is too low. And if the ad says “make an offer”, asking what my bottom line is IS NOT AN OFFER! Because whatever I quote you, you’re just gonna low ball that offer anyway. Make an offer entails you shooting me a price!!! Maybe I’ll say yes. Maybe I’ll counter. Only one way to find out. Asking “what’s your bottom line” is a shitty way of negotiating. I’m not going to cheat myself by telling you my “bottom line”. Besides, you’re most likely gonna shoot me back an offer lower than my “bottom line” anyway or come up with some bullshit example why I should sell it cheaper. Catch me on a good day and something today may be cheaper than yesterday. Bad day, it may be more expensive. Bottom lines don’t exist here.
Do you negotiate your bill after you go out to eat? No. Do you negotiate with the doctor? No Do you negotiate at the grocery store? No You just pay them all when they give you the bill. This particular industry accepts the notion of negotiation. At least do it with some class. Every seller wants the most out of their animals and every buyer wants the best deal. I get that. But telling me what someone else is selling shit for and telling me why I should lower my price isn’t negotiating. It’s strong arming. I don’t appreciate it. Just go buy it somewhere else. If you want a quality animal from an honest breeder who will be here to answer your questions and help you out if you have problems, then please hit me up. If you want a bargain basement deal because one asshole sold an animal at a ridiculous price and now you think everyone should sell at that price, don’t bother me.
Now, let’s see all the responses to this post! I can’t wait! This will be interesting!!! LMAO