Cracked screens, black displays, and permanently muted sound. We’ve all been there: stuck with a phone that’s less than ideal and, to us, totally useless. Or we simply want to update an outdated piece for the latest and greatest model. Whatever the reason for selling your iPhone, here are some tips and tricks to help you get the most money out of your old device.
Do Your Research: Check the resale value before you set a price. You can do this by a quick google search or directly in eBay with the completed listings sort feature. Be sure to find listings in your country and for your make and model of iPhone. Did the seller offer free shipping to attract more bids? Did the sold phones come with accessories? If your phone is broken, what did similar broken models bring at auction? This knowledge will give you a good place to start. This way, you won’t scare off potential buyers with a high price, and you won’t get ripped off by setting your price too low.
Don’t Wait Too Long: While there may be a market for your mom’s first flip phone, that market is very slim. The same thing goes for iPhones. Once you decide to upgrade, sell or auction off your old phone as soon as possible to bring the most money.
Timing is Key: Don’t wait too long, as above, but waiting for a specific time may be worth your while. When a new phone model is announced and released for sale, list your old one as soon as possible. Or, if the holidays are near, wait for November to cash in on the online shoppers. The start of a new school year is also a good time to sell working models.
Accessorize: Be sure to sell any cases, chargers, screen protectors and any other accessory that came with the phone at the same time. This will bring a few more dollars, particularly if your phone is several model numbers older.
Unlock and Reset: Operable devices that are tied up with major carrier contracts are harder to sell unless you can transfer the service to the buyer. This is a usually a huge pain and not worth the hassle.
Reset or restore your old phone to factory settings before selling it. This is especially important if you don’t know the buyer. Keep your sensitive information, account numbers, photos and log-ins safe from hackers by erasing the data.
Craigslist: Listing with classifieds, friend-to-friend or Craigslist has a major advantage of keeping more money in your pocket for phones which still operate. You don’t have to pay auction listing fees or PayPal fees and usually these transactions are cash. Be aware of scams on Craigslist and only deal with prospective customers who follow the directions in your ad and don’t spam your email with unrealistic requests.
Trade Ins: Some retailers offer a trade in program. They will grant store credit or credit toward a new phone purchase. If the price difference between sold listings on eBay and the trade in values are close, you may want to go with the trade in just to save time and the hassle of shipping the phone.
eBay: This avenue, by far, has the most potential for any kind of used iPhone, working or not. Multitudes of people are looking for older models for parts as well as slightly newer phones which still work. Again, be sure the phones are unlocked and ready to use when the customer receives it.
For broken or flawed iPhones, always be honest about the condition and state prominently in the listing that the phone is “for parts” and list the flaws. Bidders appreciate honesty. Remember there will be fees to list the item, fees at the auction’s end and PayPal fees to close out the deal. But this option is still better than letting an unwanted phone collect dust on the shelf.