Loaning Armor... Any experience or advice?

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405th Regiment Officer
Member DIN
I was recently approached rather serendipitously by someone who is interested in selling my armor for me. Don't worry it's not my Spartan, but rather my Nightingale.

I'm curious if anyone has advice or experience in loaning Armor in a professional capacity to effectively strangers? Were there any documents you drew up or questions you made sure to get answers to?

I'll be meeting them this Saturday to show them the armor and talk logistics. Below is the set up to how the meeting came to be.

A couple came into my normal day job looking to sharpen a leather punch. I struck a conversation about leather and quickly realized I had seen them both as vendors in smaller comic conventions through the years selling leather accessories and metal armor. I told them about my Nightingale with approx 250 hours work into it. They said, they could probably sell it for $7500 and would take $1000 cut for the effort in selling it. They warned it may take years to find the right buyer though.

If this was some internet message I would have ignored it, but considering they seem to be established in the leather/armor selling circuit I am considering it. My concern is obvious though.. What happens if I never see my costume again and I never get any compensation...?

My first question will be, have they done this for other people? And if so, what were the prices and timeline of sale? Other than that I'd want to know if they'd be willing to sign some document compensating me if it gets lost, damaged or stolen.

I don't know what that document would look like though. Being in the costume and legal field maybe Cadet might have some advice? I'm also just curious if anyone has had experience loaning costumes. I've heard a few bad ones so we might as well consolidate some stories here in this thread.
In the case of these individuals selling the costume for you, absolutely get some sort of written contract made. Spell out things like their cut or commission exactly, either percentage or a flat fee. Also state that they are selling the item for you and you reserve the right to take the item back at any time before a sale if you so change your mind. Something as simple as an email would suffice, but make sure it's in writing so if they try to take a larger cut later or won't give the costume back to you if it has not sold and you change your mind.
Thanks Cadet! Do you think a fee for it being lost stolen or damaged is fair? Like would I be allowed to put in writting they "must pay me $1000 if the costume is lost stolen or damaged beyond sale"?
Thanks Cadet! Do you think a fee for it being lost stolen or damaged is fair? Like would I be allowed to put in writting they "must pay me $1000 if the costume is lost stolen or damaged beyond sale"?
I think that's absolutely fair. Definitely including verbiage about reimbursement for if the costume is lost of damaged would be smart as well.

Basically what you want to do is have some level of a written contract so that if things go bad, you have the resources to take this to a small claims court and have the evidence on your side to come out on top. As I mentioned you should be able to get away with an email, just saying in the email, something like,

"Glad to be working with you on this project and I appreciate your help in facilitating the sale of this costume. Just so we're on the same page, you intended to sell it for $7,000 with a $1,000 cut or the sale, or a 15% cut if sold at a lower price. You also assume any liability if the costume is lost, damaged, or stolen while in your possession, and I reserve the right to take back possession of the costume at any time. Sound good?"

If they respond in the affirmative, then you have the basics of a simple written contract that should be able to stand up in a small claim's court if the unthinkable happens and they lose your costume or try to swindle you.
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