Charging A Fee To Demo An Amplifier In A Brick & Mortar Store

I Saw a pair of pre-owned tube monoblocs for sale on an onlline forum for around $17k.
The seller has a retail store for hiigh end audio. The seller mentioned that there will be an up-front fee for the demo if a prospect comes to the store the amps are not purchased. The demo fee may also be used for credit towards any purchase in the store.

This is the first time I’ve ever heard of this. Is this now a common occurance in high end audio stores? I sent a note to the seller asking what the demo fee amount was....two weeks and I didn’t get a response.

Does anyone know what amount of fees are charged for a demo?
Bf85b117 4590 4be7 a756 d05f898cdaf9mitch4t
When you purchase products at retail prices, they are set up for you in the store ready for audition and also in home delivery and setup.
When we are selling DEMOS on products that retail at $60,000.00 USD for $16,995.00 then we have to charge a fee.
We have to do this as too many customers want to expand their hobby with no real desire or inclination to purchase. They burn 3-4 hours of time and make insulting offers. Just like you, our time is worth something. Charging a fee allows us to determine if you are serious. If you dont like the item, you can use the said fee to purchase something on the spot.
Spend your $$$ in another store....this is plain ridiculous IMHO.
@mitch4t is talking about norms and best practices, here, not about "rights." FWIW.
I hope this doesn't become a trend in other industries. Imagine going to a car dealer for a look see and test drive and being told, "Nah, it's gonna cost you to test drive this rust bucket."

All the best,
Yup, know where this place is. Weird store layout. No rooms, just  gear everywhere, in an open floor plan. I'd only buy from there if it is something you know you want at the price you want to pay. Better get everything in writing too.