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Background
For the last few days, I've been attempting to figure out what my items current market value are, if anything.

Attempts
This is extremely hard to figure out, due to the auction house. I have attempted to input items into the in-game search, but with the limit of only three criteria, you can't input any rare items fully. Even if you could, though, the auction house is not a very good way to determine what the market value of an item is, due to it displaying what items are listed for, and very rarely shows you items that are sold. Without knowing if an item sells at the listed price, this data is not very helpful at all.

I have tried listing items that look similar at roughly the same price, and they rarely get sold. Even when I start the bids extremely low, it's even rarer to even get bids.

I also tried the human element: I bit the bullet and posted on the bnet forums. Unfortunately, with the amount of users all attempting to hawk their wares at the same time, the only way to get a response is to continually bump your post back to the front page. It took all of twenty minutes to bury my request for a price check to the fifth page. Even with multiple bumps, I never got a response.

I have also tried the d2jsp forums. While not as busy as the bnet forums, it suffers from the same problems, and you have no idea if anyone is telling you the truth, or giving you a low valuation in an attempt to score themselves a deal. I managed to get a single valuation, out of the roughly dozen items I posted, after two days.

I've even tried a few websites that purport to tell you what the market value of your items are, and the one that actually provided a value, didn't seem to be even close to what I would rough it out to.

Research
I have read What factors should I use to price an item in the auction house?, and the tips there certainly help to give you an idea on what items might be worth something, but it doesn't address trying to figure out what your items are worth, other than to compare against the auction house.

Items that roll extremely high on their stats are worth MUCH more than if the item had rolled the exact same affixes, but with lower stats. The closer you get to maximum rolls, the best I can determine is that the price increases almost exponentially.

Conclusion
Does anyone know of any resource (person, website, utility, whatever), that I can use to basically throw my item at he/she/it, and it comes back with a general estimate? Preferably within a reasonable time frame, but so long as it's reliable, I can wait a few days for an answer.

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"Does anyone know of any resource [..] that I can throw my item at, and it comes back with a general estimate? [..] I can wait a few days for an answer." - the auction house? –  BlueRaja - Danny Pflughoeft Jul 20 '12 at 22:59
    
@BlueRaja-DannyPflughoeft The auction house only gives you a value if the item sells. Even then, it does not tell you what the item was worth; only that it was worth at least what you priced it at. –  Frank Jul 20 '12 at 23:02
    
@BlueRaja-DannyPflughoeft I think the point is a resource is wanted that does the cross referencing for you –  kalina Jul 20 '12 at 23:02
1  
What "factors should I use to price an item" and "how do I determine FMV" seem like very similar questions to me. I get that you don't see an answer to that question that you like. Maybe a bounty is in order? But then I think you know you'll never get a good answer to this question, right? –  EBongo Jul 21 '12 at 0:33
    
To somewhat clarify my pessimism, I don't think the answer is "there is no good way". When you look at the rate of item creation, the rate of gold creation, frequent rule changes, etc - the concept of approximate FMV seems rather ephemeral. –  EBongo Jul 21 '12 at 2:01

3 Answers 3

The nature of the market is such that the value of an item is highly variable. An item may sell for 10 million because someone is searching for just those stats, but the exact same item may fail to sale for 5 million because nobody else is looking for that.

A lot of fan sites do have trade forums. They let you post your item and ask for a "price check". Essentially what you are getting is offers for how much people would pay you for the item. This can get you a sure sale, and it helps you gauge interest, and may even allow you to avoid the 15% fee if you are trusting. But you're obviously limiting your audience pretty significantly, so there's nothing to say that you couldn't get much more by just posting it on the AH.

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The auction house is a pretty good tool to determine prices. You just need to learn how to use it.

  1. Learn which affix combinations are most commonly sought for and search for the three most important ones when deciding prices of similar items.
  2. Search for slightly lower attribute values. E.g. If you have a 214 vit, 87 str, 68 all res chest plate, only search for 200 str, 80 vit, 65 all res. This will make more relevant items (which are similar to yours) appear in the results.
  3. Sort by buyout price. The items with the lowest buyout prices should be a pretty decent indication of what your item is worth. Items with significantly higher buyout prices are either overpriced or have significantly better stats than your item.
  4. Consider also setting a bid price, aside from the buyout price. This way, people who are interested in the item will pull the item up to reasonable level. This is not applicable for cheap items though, but if an item is worth several millions, people tend to be willing to use the bidding function.
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There is no such tool, as you would need all the data in the AH to determine the current market value. No such API exists, so only Blizzard could provide such a service and this is against their interests.

There are many studies about this for real life markets, and believe me if someone creates such a tool for Diablo he could get rich applying it to real world markets.

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Diablo economy != real world economy; even if Blizzard is sanctioning botters as some sort of Bernanke stimulus package –  Alok Jul 20 '12 at 23:56

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