Fiddleheads Violin Studio Sales Policies
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Fiddleheads serves and ships to customers around the world. You will see all prices and policies are posted online in USD, most in CAD. Unlike many other shops, we openly post all prices and policies.
Fluctuations in the currency market makes it impossible for us to post multi-currency prices. To make it accurate, now that the Canadian dollar is weak against the USD, most prices are set in USD and some also in CAD.
Fiddleheads currently happily serves Canadians at par with some items (despite the significant discrepancy in the currency exchange rates) and uses shipping methods which do not charge additional brokerage fees at the border. We do this to keep our Canadian customers here happy and to take the sting off the taxes.
Canadian customers who wish to pay in CAD for an order only available on the site in USD are welcome to email us to be invoiced in CAD and we will charge you at the current exchange.
Our CAD prices are only applicable to orders shipped to a Canadian address, without exception. All orders shipping to the USA and internationally must use the USD payment options.
Canadian residents pay tax as applicable (GST & PST in BC, GST/HST for rest of Canada depending on your local taxes). Note our Paypal buttons have this tax added in already upon checkout. Any items drop-shipped from USA warehouses direct to Canadian customers and which are invoiced directly by us (not the site) will have no tax on shipping.
No tax for orders outside Canada. Simple!
*Our local taxes apply to goods picked up in-person. Items shipped to outside our province may pay less or, in the case of American customers, no tax if we ship the goods to you.
Note Fiddleheads's Online Shopping Cart System/ Buy Now only accepts Paypal and credit card payments via Paypal. Our most preferred payment options are Interac E-Transfer (Canada) and Direct deposit (USA).
Should you wish to purchase an item without a cart button, we are happy to personally invoice you so you can pay with paypal/credit card or other means as above. Just email and we will arrange all the details for you.
Accepted forms of payment is entirely at our discretion. Items are not shipped or released until funds have cleared.
It is at our sole discretion to accept weekly or monthly payments and to whom we are willing to offer this flexibility. When accepted, the length of of term is proportionate to the total amount (eg, more costly violin = longer payment duration). When the instrument is released to the customer is also at our discretion.
We are forthright in that, unlike most shops, we do not charge interest or financing fees as this adds costs for buyers and this is taking unfair advantage of people aready in a compromised financial situation. As such, we also do not offer rent-to-own plans as these also inflate the price.
Payments made toward a violin are non-refundable since the instrument is being held for the customer and not made available to anyone else.
Contact us with any specific questions regarding the possiblity for financing and making payments.
Fiddleheads places various items on sale depending on availability, overstock and manufacturer's promotions. Select the refresh/reload button on your web browser to see any changes on our pages since your last visit.
Our violins and violas are shipped tuned and ready to play with the bridge and soundpost up and finely adjusted. We take extra precaution and effort to carefully add custom-sized padding around the bridge to keep it from leaning or falling. This in addition to packaging the violin in a case (sometimes with added padding) or special violin shipping box.
Almost every single violin we have shipped arrived without damage and with the bridge and post still standing, often still in tune. However, due to various factors with shipping, it's impossible to guarantee the instrument will be in tune or that the bridge or soundpost will still be standing upon arrival.
Should the post, in particular, fall (rattling around inside the violin), the customer will have to take the instrument to a local shop to have it put back into place. This is a simple procedure done by experienced hands which will only take 5 minutes to complete. Customers are advised to pay only between $8 and $20 tops to have this quick service done, though some shops may try to charge more to a desperate customer.
Instrument and bow trials are welcome and encouraged. Please visit our Trials page for more information.
Fiddleheads takes very limited consignment sales of instruments, bows and accessories.
Our owner, Rhiannon, is very picky about the instruments she takes on consignment and will turn away ones which do not meet her standards or if she cannot take quickly. Consignments of instruments valued under $1000 are rarely accepted. Instruments priced higher than our average prices will not sell quickly. In this case lowering the price helps to sell the instrument faster. Besides, we cannot in good conscience charge what many other shops charge.
A percentage of the selling price is taken as a selling fee of all consignment items. (25% for instruments under $8000, 20% for instruments above $8000). The consignment fee is only charged once the instrument sells and under no circumstances before sale unless we choose to purchase the violin outright, which would not be a consignment. The seller is responsible for shipping (as well as return shipping to the seller, if needed) and the cost of any repairs or strings the instrument may require before being listed for consignment.
Sending the instrument to us is not always necessary. This will at least help determine if there is a market for the instrument. Minimum consignment period is 90 days. Buyer offers below asking price may be presented to the seller for their approval. In order to meet changing market demands, we reserve the right to change this and all other policies.
Trades are upgrades are accepted pending our approval. Much of this depends on the customer's asking price for the instrument and if there is need for the instruments. Preference is given toward instruments purchased from Fiddleheads as the prices are not inflated and these instruments sell quickly.
Very much like the Consignment Sales policy, we reserves the right to refuse instruments due to their condition or those that are unlikely to sell quickly. Instruments which have been damaged or altered may not be redeemable for trade or upgrade.
Sadly many players have paid too much for instruments elsewhere and we cannot grant inflated purchase price on a trade, especially once the instrument is used. In many cases it's recommended customers sell their previous instruments in private sale where they can get back more of what they paid than in a trade, especially considering how much lower Fiddleheads' prices are than retail and other shops. Some customers have made money selling privately. Note that some cheaper new instruments, particularly budget level student violins, will depreciate since purchase.
We take instruments on trade/upgrade as long as the next instrument is roughly double the price of the trade-in. Should the trade-in need repair, new strings, or any money put into it to make it salable, fees are deducted from the trade-in value. We is very reasonable and far more generous in this regard thatn most shops.
Customers are reminded to shop with confidence by reading all the product information provided, considering testimonials and asking questions if the website doesn't provide adequate information. Customers are also urged to take instruments on trial, where possible, to make a more "sound" (mind the pun) decision.
When customers choose return an item (excluding final sale items), they are first encouraged to replace the item with one of equal value or at a credit toward purchase of one of a higher value.
To protect ourselves from rare but harmful circumstances resulting from customers behaving inappropriately or unreasonably despite our efforts to resolve their perceived complaints, Fiddleheads reserves the right to refuse returns after 2 weeks and some items/situations are subject to a restock fee (20%).
With returned items, outbound shipping costs from Fiddleheads to the customer are not refundable, and the customer is resonsible for return shipping (inbound to Fiddleheads). More on shipping for returned items here.
In the event of a return or upgrade where the instrument has been played considerably, the customer also pays any necessary costs to cover replacement strings, etc to restore the instrument to new or sellable condition. Items covered by a manufacturer's warantee are replaced but only in the event of a proven manufacturing defect. Items which are damaged as a result of misuse or transit are not covered. In no case of accidental damage or negligence (other than in shipping from Fiddleheads) can an item be returned for refund.
Credits resulting from a return are held for up to one year from receipt of initial payment and other conditions may apply. Deposits placed toward held or pending items (trial or purchase) that are delayed to ship as per the customer's request for more than 60 days after receipt of the payment won't be refunded, but the funds will be held on the customer's account as a credit under similar terms as return credits. All special orders require a non-refundable deposit and cancellation of a special order results in the customer forfeiting the deposit.
Credits resulting from gifted Shopping Spree Vouchers are kept on file. Shopping Spree Vouchers cannot be transferred to another recipient and do not expire. Voucher accounts with a balance after 2 years from the date of voucher purchase are subject to an annual account maintenance fee of 10% of the remaining balance starting on the 3rd anniversary of purchase and applied yearly thereafter. Purchase a voucher here.
Trial Deposits, those clearly indicated to be used during a trial of an instrument are refundable under the terms of the Trial Policy. "Special Purchase Deposits" placed in advance for a confirmed sale (special order, non-trial purchase) are non-refundable.
RA Number Required
Returns must be granted an RA (Returns Authorization) number in order to be processed and received. Please DO NOT simply send the parcel back to us without receiving our authorization and easy to follow instructions as this may result in added costs to the customer and/or rejection of the parcel. More info on return shipments here
Fiddleheads strives to provide the best possible service to all customers and prospective customers.
We reserve the right to refuse service to persons who are clearly abusing our good will in providing special expertise free of charge and those who become verbally abusive or threatening. We ask that persons sending queries with no intentions of giving Fiddleheads their business be mindful that this is our livelihood and our expert time is valuable.
Thank you for respecting that there are real people with feelings taking time to read and reply to your emails.
In simple, friendly, English: Fiddleheads takes privacy and digital security seriously.
The personal information we collect and keep in our local password-protected email and accounting systems is solely what you provide at the time of your order from us or if you provide the information via email or another means: your name/s, shipping address, email address/es, phone number and any other details necessary for us to serve you as a customer, such as the products you ordered. We don't need to know much more than that, unless you really want to disclose the name of your dog, send pics of your stinky but adorable kids, brag about recent accoplishments or sheepishly confess to embarrasing things may or may not have done as a teenager. Don't worry, we don't judge, we love making a connection with you and you can trust your information is safe with us!
Any paper records kept on file for tax purposes (we all gotta keep receipts) that may contain your name or other personal information is flamboyantly converted to confetti [cross-shredded] after seven years in locked storage. We do not sell or share your information with other parties in any way other than to provide our fantastic service to you (eg: creating a shipping label, arranging a drop-shipment directly from a vendor, checking in to make sure everything is working out, etc).
Also, in accepting online payments through Zelle, Interac and Paypal we never see your bank account details or credit card number, nor do we want to keep that info on file. We would rather fill our bursting harddrives with awesome violin music, cat videos and pictures of our own stinky but adorable kids!
Online Orders vs. Personalized Invoicing
Click here to have us process your order manually.
Eco "Green" Policy
Violin Lessons Policies
Please feel free to make contact with any questions, concerns or feedback on these policies.