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For me, there's nothing quite like buying a new electronic gadget. The thrill of unboxing it, charging it up and using it for the first time, and then figuring out how to use the device. You use the device, and if it's a winner, you use it for a couple of years.
But what happens when that shiny new device is no longer being used, or isn't as fast, or doesn't have the latest operating system update? Does it just sit in your drawer gathering dust?
I have had a tendency to use things until they're not as useful as they once were, then to upgrade and let the old one sit in a box somewhere.
The thing is, often those old, unused and sometimes broken electronics are still worth some money to someone.
This past week while continuing to unpack and declutter at our new house, I decided to sell a couple of old electronic devices that I had sitting around the house cluttering things up. A couple of them were still working but were unused. One of them, my old Nexus tablet, was working to a degree but had a cracked screen. I decided to see if I could get any money out of them.
10 Places To Sell Your Old Electronics
Here are the top 10 (or more) places that I found where you can sell your old, unused or broken devices.
- Amazon Trade-In program: Ship your old items, not only electronics, to Amazon and receive Amazon gift cards in return. Not typically the biggest return on your money.
- Ebay: Sell your item at auction and pay listing and final value fees. I've done pretty well selling things through eBay, even things that are broken. Some items like TVs can be sold for parts, remotes, etc as well. Just be careful of scammers.
- Gazelle: Gazelle.com is one of the leading e-commerce companies that buys and sells pre-owned consumer electronics. They will take used smartphones, tablets, laptops, and select desktops. Gazelle will pay by check, Amazon.com Gift Cards or PayPal.
- SellShark.com: Sell your Apple products, everything from Apple TV and Apple Watch devices to broken iPods.
- Green Buyback: GreenBuyback pays cash for your cell phones and a wide variety of other electronics. GreenBuyback makes the process quick and simple with free shipping and speedy payment. Want extra cash? Use promo code: moneymatters when checking out at GreenBuyback to get an extra $5 for your order.
- ItsWorthMore: Sell your iPhone, Macbook or Android device with a well rated buyer.
- BuyBack World: They'll buy iPhones, iPads, media players and a host of other electronics. They even buy unwanted gift cards.
- ItemCycle.com: They buy your used iPhones, iPads, MacBooks, and other Apple devices.
- Craigslist: Sell locally to people on craigslist who want to see the device in person before buying. In some cases that can mean a higher price, although more hassle.
- Sell On Amazon: Just search for your item on Amazon, then look for the button that says “Sell on Amazon”. You can then create a listing to sell your used item via Amazon. You'll just pay a small listing fee and a pay a percentage when it sells.
- Walmart: Walmart has a trade-in program, but they are partnered with Gazelle, so it will be a similar offer to what you see at their website.
- NextWorth: Get a quote online on how much you can get for your old device, and get payment.
- Target Stores: You can trade in items at Target, although it's “powered by NextWorth”, so you'll likely get a similar bid for your item.
- Best Buy Trade-In: Trade in your electronics and get credit in Best Buy gift cards.
- Gamestop Trade In: Get a quote on your device online, and then get paid after it has been sent in and processed.
- Facebook “For Sale” Groups: A relatively new phenomenon is the Facebook yard sale group. Most local areas that are big enough will have at least one or two local yard sale groups where you can connect with others and either buy or sell your item to other Facebook users. We haven't used this to sell electronics, but have sold other items this way.
- ecoATM: ecoATM has ATM like machines in high traffic locations that help you to sell your phone or tablet.
- Sell Broke: Get an instant quote to sell laptops, phones, tablets, or other electronic devices – even if they're broken.
- Gadget Salvation: This website will take most electronic devices, even those that are broken. Get a quote through their website.
- MaxBack: This site pays cash for cell phones, tablets, and other devices!
- GizMogul: Sell anything from old iPhones and smartphones to tablets, watches, Macbooks and more.
- YouRenew: Sell your old phones, tablets and other devices.
- uSell: Working or damaged, sell your used phone in seconds
- iPhone Antidote: Mainly buying Apple products.
Consider A Warranty If You're Accident Prone
If you're concerned that you might end up breaking your expensive device because you tend to be a bit clumsy or accident prone, you may want to consider purchasing an extended warranty from the outset for your device.
One of the best places to do that in my experience is Square Trade as the costs are typically pretty reasonable and they cover things like drops and spills:
Another thing to consider is that a lot of credit cards will offer extended warranty protection just for using their card. For example, I bought a GPS years ago that my credit card added a 2nd year of warranty onto – which came in handy when it stopped working.
Selling My Old Devices
Selling your old devices can take a little bit of work, especially if you're trying to get top dollar for them. It pays to look around, get quotes at a few different sites, and see what you can get for them. One of my devices I found that the average selling prices on eBay were about $25, but if sold on Amazon would bring in closer to $50. Another item I found I could get the best return by selling on eBay. All three of the items had no trade in value when I looked at the popular trade-in sites like Gazelle and NextWorth. Typically it seems your devices have to be relatively new and popular, like iPads and iPhones.
This week I decided to sell three items. Let's take a look at how it went with all three.
Nexus 7 8GB 1st Generation Tablet
This item I didn't think I'd be getting much, or any, money for. The tablet had come flying out of it's case while I was walking through a parking lot, and landed screen down on the asphalt. The screen cracked and the touchscreen was inoperable. After doing some research I found that there was an active marketplace for repairable items on eBay where people will buy broken electronics and repair them. Broken tablets like mine were routinely selling for between $25 and $50.
I listed the tablet on eBay and after a week at auction it sold for about $41 with $9 shipping. Not too bad for a broken tablet that would have just sat in a drawer. I got rid of the broken tablet, and someone else gets a DIY project. For that adventurous person they can replace the screen for about $100 and have a nice tablet for about $150. Typically it would cost new for about $200.
Virgin Mobile Optimus V Cell Phone
I looked at a bunch of places to either trade in or sell my Android cell phone. It's on an older version of Android, and the device is now a few years old. A lot of trade-in sites offered me $0 for the phone, and when checking eBay the recently completed sales for this phone ended in the $20-30 range for brand new phones.
In the end I put a listing up on Amazon to sell the cell phone since other listings there were closer to the $30-50 range. 10 minutes after listing my phone it sold for my listing price of $45! After selling fees I netted about $40. I'm happy with that since I paid about $70 for it a few years ago!
Virgin Mobile Overdrive Pro 3G/4G Mobile Broadband Device
I bought this mobile broadband device about a year ago on sale for about $90. After using it for a month or two I switched to the free mobile broadband offered via FreedomPop. The new device from FreedomPop was the exact same device, also using the Sprint network. So I basically got the same service for free instead of $35/month.
After checking around I saw that the Virgin Mobile device was getting about $50 or so on eBay, and trade-in prices weren't great. On Amazon, however, most people had their devices listed at $90-110, and the device still sells new for $120 at Virgin Mobile. I decided to list the item at Amazon for $89.99, at the time the lowest price for the device. I was pretty confident it would sell, however, the day I listed it Virgin Mobile put the device on sale for $71.99, essentially killing any chances I have of selling until the sale is over.
For now I'll leave the device listed, but it hasn't sold yet. We'll see what happens once the sale is over. I have a feeling it will sell for close to what I paid for it. (Update: I ended up selling the device for $65 after several others listed their devices at lower prices. Just goes to show, the sooner you sell something the better off you are.)
Selling Your Old Electronics Can Mean Cash. The Sooner You Sell The Better
Selling your old electronic devices can mean cash in your pocket. The one caveat is that often the older or less desirable the device, the harder time you'll have selling it. If you have a recent generation Apple product you'll probably have more luck than an older off brand item.
My Nexus tablet was pretty desirable, and relatively new, so even broken it sold for almost 25% of it's original price. The phone wasn't as desirable, but was in like new condition and in the right marketplace still fetched over 1/2 it's original price. The last item I sold was a newer device and is still being sold new by Virgin – but since quite a few others popped up in the marketplace, the sales price ended up being lower than hoped.
So if you have some old electronics, why not try listing them and making a few dollars?
Have you tried selling old electronics online? What sites have you used, and how successful have you been?