BlueBook and Vref Prices

I am buying a Cirrus for the first time and dealing with Brokers. Why are the asking prices for SR-20 2000-2003 so much more than Bluebook and Vref? I do not mind paying average retail, but prices are listed $20K to $40K more than book. Many listings by brokers are sold, and have been for several months. If Bluebook and Vref prices are wrong, why are they not corrected?

I bought my 2005 SR22 after months of searching. Prices on are about 10% higher than what planes actually sell for. Brokers need their commission, and are always looking to take advantage of unsuspecting customers. Private sellers are too optimistic about the value of their airplanes. Have patience. There are plenty of airplanes on the market.


First - since you state you “buying” a Cirrus - you really need to join COPA. Then, using your newly available tool, do some research. YOU WILL BE REWARDED - COPA is the BEST aviation money you will ever spend - just DO IT!

Once you are a member, then you will have access to the entire wealth of “tribal knowledge”, history, and information, and we can have some more reasonable discussions.

Enjoy! - Join today - you will NOT be sorry!!!


Robert, the short answer is that the Cirrus-specialist brokers (TAS, Lone Mountain, Steel) all have much better market data than Bluebook or Vref does. Add to that the fact that it’s impossible to correctly configure a Cirrus airplane in the Vref tool, and you can start to see why these online resources can diverge significantly from true market value.

We maintain a Cirrus valuation model that solves both of these problems. Please feel free to contact me if you’d like to discuss the value of any particular airplane you’re looking at, whether it’s in our inventory or not.

Chris, Thank you and the brokers at Lone Mountain for being very tolerant and helpful in my journey to buy my first Cirrus. The AOPA Vref pricing tool is a free reference for AOPA members. Being limited, it is a great inexpensive tool to start learning how to price an aircraft. One then can go to Bluebook, which is more robust in its detail. Practice on sale listings, both Cirrus and non-Cirrus. They are important tools for the knowledgeable buyer.

I also recommend becoming very familiar with reviewing engine and air frame logs. I can give some issues that I routinely check (compressions, AD’s, prop strikes, major repairs, frequency of use, engine rust, etc) , but perhaps someone more knowledgeable can give advice. My mechanic has been helpful with suggestions. If you buy an airplane, you are also buying the logbook history.

Buyer beware.

After you join COPA, hire SAVVY to manage your pre-buy and your manintenance. Second best money you can spend, especially if you’re a new Cirrus owner.

+1 on Savvy but review the boroscopes, etc yourself.

And work only with Chris or Jamie Steele or another trusted Cirrus broker. They take the long view and won’t give one buyer bad advice. But they have probably told you that you’re buying into the sweet spot and you have to move quick. That may feel uncomfortable but when you see a good one at a good price, it won’t last long so you do have to move quick.

Cirrus is an interesting case study for sure…Cirrus has a number of packages and options that affect the value greatly. However some options are more subjective than others. Can’t speak to how V-ref does their pricing, but Bluebook reports the new pricing Cirrus provides as well as the option pricing. The average retail values are based on reported sales and from what is seen in the marketplace. The brokers probably have a lot of good data as well because they move a lot of aircraft, but keep in mind, the Aircraft Bluebook is not trying to sell you an airplane.

I’ve been looking at a 2004 g2 with over 1100 hrs and some good upgrades. I can’t get vref to price it over 200k unless I say all the options are brand new (not the engine). Then I still can’t get it over 215k. The ask is over 250k. I’m interested in the plane but not interested in being stupid. Can vref be that wrong? It starts at retail 190k. I have a good friend who bought a g2 with fresh chute and fresh OH, 225k. That sounds closer to vref than the current listed planes. Makes it tough for a buyer, no I can’t use a broker as I’m not going to pay and addtl 6% sales tax. Is vref that wrong? Experiences?