Realistic pricing is keeping the flow of pre-owned business aircraft inventory moving. But it’s a fragile process, and in some segments progress is glacial.
The good news for buyers: bargains still abound.
Aircraft brokers have had plenty to grumble about since the good old days ended, but the talk about the lack of deals has subsided and today’s more muted commiseration revolves around how long it’s taking to get deals done, which at least implies that deals are getting done. The consensus seems to be that the recovery in the market is now broader than it was last year and has encompassed some heretofore forgotten market segments. What had been a tale of two markets drew buyer attention to the large-cabin, long-range, current-production types, while the older, less-sought-after models foundered, searching for an elusive price floor. This year brought a growing perception that a floor was forming beneath some out-of-production (or classic) models, and once buyers were convinced it was they stepped in. Purchase of these older-generation aircraft can be a lengthy and draining process, but at the end of the day, deals are getting done with a sense of relief from seller and elation from buyers.