Rental FAQ's

Should I rent or purchase an instrument?
What is the process for renting an instrument?
Which level of rental is right for me?
Is there a minimum rental term?
What equipment is included in the rental?
How can I determine what size instrument I need?
What forms of payment accepted?
How are payments handled?
Can rental payments go towards purchase?
Is insurance included? What is covered?
What do I do if a string breaks or the instrument is damaged during rental?
What if I need to change sizes while renting?
What if I want to rent more than one instrument?
What about shipping cost?
What if I need to return my rental instrument?
Where is Sullivan Violins located? How do I get there?
Can I rent online?
Can I upgrade to a wooden bow?


Should I rent or purchase an instrument?
Purchasing is always a great option. Owning an instrument is an investment in you or your child’s playing that will maintain its value over time. Our 100% Trade Back policy makes it easy to continue to move up in size or quality levels. However, if you are experimenting to find out if a violin, viola, or cello is the right instrument for you or want to build equity towards an eventual purchase, renting can be a great choice. Sullivan Violins offers 3 levels of instrument rentals - standard, advancing and master - so that our customers can rent an best instrument to suit their needs.

Back To Top

What is the process for renting an instrument?
Coming to Sullivan Violins to get your rental can ensure you start out on the right foot. Getting a new rental violin, viola, or cello involves sizing, testing out various levels of rentals, if desired, and filling out a contract - you 'll need a valid credit card, and a voided check and the whole thing usually takes about 15 or 20 minutes. Teachers are always welcome to help with the rental process!

If you live too far away to come into the store, you can still easily rent from us. We have renters all over the continental US. Complete and submit the Online Rental Request Form and we’ll contact you to confirm your rental and complete the rental process. In many cases, we can ship your rental within 48 hours (Some instruments may take longer, depending on availability). For more information, go to Rental Program Overview.

Back To Top

Which level of rental is right for me?
If you are a first time violin or viola player, our standard rental may be for you. All of the instruments are set up to our exacting standards to ensure ease of playing. They are great starter instruments.

If you have some experience playing and/or are wanting to get a greater sound production and a more beautiful tonal quality, you may want to consider our advancing rental instruments. Beginner and advancing cello players will get an excellent start with our fully carved advanced cello outfits.

Master rentals are great for a committed player who wants to have a superior quality instrument today while building credit towards purchase.

Back To Top

Is there a minimum rental term?
Sullivan Violins rental program is flexible to meet your needs. The minimum rental term is three months. After the initial three months, your rental converts to a month to month agreement with automatic payments to your chosen payment method. Your rental agreement can be terminated at any time following the initial three month minimum rental period. Simply return your rental instrument outfit to Sullivan Violins to terminate your rental agreement. No refunds are given for partial months.

Back To Top

What equipment is included in the rental?
All rentals include instrument, bow, case (or a bag for cellos), rosin and ID tag.

Back To Top

What forms of payment accepted?
Automatic monthly payments are processed to a credit card (Visa, MasterCard or Discover), or to a checking account. Two forms of payment, a checking account and credit card (not a debit card), are required. You select which form will be your preferred method of payment. The other form of payment remains a secondary to be used only if we are unable to collect payment using your preferred method. Sullivan Violins will notify you prior to utilizing your secondary payment method.

Back To Top

How are payments handled?
At the time of rental, you select your preferred method of payment - checking account or credit card. Payment will be processed monthly, generally the same day every month automatically. Please be aware that checking account payments do not process on Saturday or Sunday. If your normal process date falls on a weekend, your payment will likely process the Friday or Monday closest to your process date.

Back To Top

Can rental payments go towards purchase?
Your first 12 months of rental fees (excluding insurance and tax) are earned as equity credit. You can use your equity to purchase any like instrument of equal or greater value from Sullivan Violins. (i.e. A violin of rental equity can be used towards purchase of a violin, a cello rental can be used toward the purchase of a cello, etc.) You can, but do not have to, use the credit towards purchase of the instrument you rent. Given our 100% trade back policy, we strongly encourage our customers to consider purchase when they reach the maximum of 12 months of earned equity.

Note: Equity cannot be used to purchase bows, cases, consignment instruments or accessories. Rental equity will be available to use for up to two years after closure of the rental account, after which time, it may be forfeited.

Back To Top

Is insurance included? What is covered?
Sullivan Violins offers an insurance program that covers all regular maintenance (e.g. Broken strings, slipping pegs, warped bridge, and bow re-hair), and accidental damage or theft from a secure location. You may stop by Sullivan Violins shop at any time to have a broken string replaced or damaged instrument/bow exchanged or repaired. If needed, we can ship a replacement string or instrument/bow. Shipping charges will apply. Call us at 585-325-7250 to request shipment of a replacement.

Insurance does NOT, however, cover gross negligence, theft or loss from leaving the instrument in an insecure environment (e.g. an unlocked car), fire/water damage, heat damage, damage due to excessive dryness, intentional damage, or shipping costs. We are not obligated to replace an instrument that is repairable.

If the renter declines our insurance offer, he or she will be responsible for all maintenance, damage, or loss, and we reserve the right to charge the cost of repair or replacement to any payment method on file. We must perform all repairs on rental instruments in house. In case of out-of-town emergency, please contact us for authorization for a third party repair.

Back To Top

What do I do if a string breaks or the instrument is damaged during rental?
If you have purchased rental insurance along with your rental instrument, you are welcome to stop by the shop for a replacement if a string breaks or if your instrument needs repair. If you are long distance, simply contact us and we will ship you a replacement. We are not responsible for the cost of strings purchased elsewhere.

If the instrument is damaged, please contact us immediately by phone or bringing your rental to our location during business hours.

Back To Top

What if I need to change sizes while renting?
You can changes sizes during your rental. Simply contact us to arrange an exchange.

Back To Top

What if I want to rent more than one instrument?
Sullivan Violins offers a 10% off discount on a second instrument rental. This helps musically minded families rent quality instruments for multiple players!

Back To Top

What about shipping cost?
Renters are responsible for all outbound and inbound shipping costs. We ship ground and our insurance covers the instrument during shipment. Click Here for details on shipping costs. Any return shipments should be sent by trackable method - UPS Ground, trackable USPS or FedEx Ground Service.

Back To Top

What if I need to return my rental instrument?
Simply contact us and let us know you will be returning the instrument. You can return the instrument in person at our shop or ship the instrument to us, and we will end your rental contract once the instrument is received. Future payments will be suspended. No refunds will be issued for partial months.

If you are shipping the instrument, please include a note that indicates what name the rental contract is under, why you are returning the instrument, and the best method to contact you if any question should arrive. Pack the instrument according to our packing guidelines and ship by ground trackable method to:

Rental Returns
Sullivan Violins
3300 Monroe Avenue, Suite 215
Rochester, NY 14618

Back To Top

Where is Sullivan Violins located? How do I get there?
Sullivan Violins is located at 120 East Ave. in the East End of Rochester, NY. Take the Goodman Street Exit off of I-490. Drive North on Goodman, turn left onto East Ave. Sullivan Violins is located between Swan and Gibbs Streets. Easy parking is found in the East End Parking Garage, which can be accessed by turning right off East on both Swan and Scio streets.

Back To Top

Can I rent online?
You can start the rental process by submitting a rental request online. We will contact you to confirm availability, and in-store pick up or delivery timing. If you would like us to ship or deliver the instrument to you, we will obtain your payment method information and complete the rental process by phone.

Back To Top

Can I upgrade to a wooden bow?
Can I upgrade to a wooden bow? Wooden bows are available with all Sullivan Violins rental instruments. The cost for a wooden bow with violin and viola rentals is $10 extra per month, and $15 extra per month for cellos.

Back To Top