From that price, it makes me think that the chair is a replica, someone doesn’t know what they have or the chair is in bad shape…
If the chair was used when this guy bought it, I think that makes it twice as likely to be a replica. The Eames Lounge Chair is, perhaps, the most iconic piece of mid-century furniture there is. It retails for around $5,000 and holds it’s value very well.
I’m not an expert here and don’t have a real or replica Eames lounger. However, I do know a couple of common things that should instantly tell you if it’s a replica.
1. Does it recline? A real Eames is a lounge chair and does not recline. Many replicas will recline.
2. Pay attention to the base A real Eames has a solid die-cast Aluminum a base with 5 legs. Compare how solid the real one looks vs the Barcelona Design or Manhattan Home versions.
3. Hidden screws The shells of a real Eames conceal almost all the screws. The exception is the arm rest, which I believe has 2 or 3 underneath.
With that said I do think some of the replicas start around $1,000 and may use quality leather. Depending on the condition and how close the above match, you might offer him $500 or $600. I wouldn’t bank on it being real though.