Arqade is a question and answer site for passionate videogamers on all platforms. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

As the title says, I've noticed that vendors seem to be willing to buy my items for a lot less than the "value" listed outside of the vendor UI. Examples:

  • Potion of Lasting Potency is 311 gold in my "items" view, but Lucan Valerius will only pay 126 gold for it
  • Similarly for my Axe of Whiterun: 201 gold in "items," only 81 gold at the vendor
  • 500 gold for Scroll of Bane of the Undead in "items," 203 gold at the vendor

and so on. What's the deal here?

share|improve this question

marked as duplicate by kotekzot, Unionhawk, Ben, shanodin, 5pike Oct 1 '14 at 6:07

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

Basic economics - they need to be able to buy it at a price which allows them to resell at a profit. – shanodin Oct 1 '14 at 5:38
up vote 10 down vote accepted

The value in your inventory is the worth of the item. Vendors will give you a percentage of that value based on your speechcraft skill and other factors. Likewise they will sell it for a multiple of that value.

Specifically the price is:

Sell price = [ value of item ] / [ 3.3 - (1.3 * [speech skill]/100) ] * [(1 + Haggling %) * (1 + Allure %) * (1 + Fortify Barter from potion) * (1 + the sum of Fortify Barter from equipment + Fortify Barter from Blessing of Zenithar)

From the UESP Wiki.

share|improve this answer
My speech is currently 20 (my character is level 13). To get better prices, level up my speechcraft? – Matt Ball Jan 22 '12 at 4:06
Leveling up speech and getting a few perks will help. :] – stay Jan 22 '12 at 4:12
Yeah, just buy and sell items and it will go up over time. Or pray for a blessing from Zenithar or wear items that boost your speechcraft or spell percentage. Oh, and you can give coins to beggars for the gift of charity boost. – Canageek Jan 22 '12 at 4:18
Ah yes, I am already wearing a Necklace of Minor Haggling (12% better prices). The math adds up. Thanks! – Matt Ball Jan 22 '12 at 4:23

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.