Now that the new iPhone 5 has been announced, the chances are good that quite a few of you out there will have a perfectly good iPhone 4 or Android phone that you’ll be looking to sell in the next few weeks. We don’t blame you. If you want to buy a shiny new handset but you’re short on cash, selling your old smart phone can be a great way to raise funds.
However, this doesn’t mean that you should simply unload your smart phone to the first person who’s willing to buy it from you. There are plenty of places to unload a used phone these days, and if you want to maximize your profits, you need to play the market a little. To help you out, here are four tips that can help you get the most money out of your used smart phone.
1) Sell it to an online vendor. The easiest way to sell an unwanted smart phone is to ship it off to an Internet-based electronics pawn shop, like Gazelle. The prices may not be ideal, but these sites will purchase pretty much any phone.
Since each vendor will offer you a different price, it’s important to get quotes from multiple sites before you sell. For instance, Gazelle is offering $130 for a used 32 GB iPhone 4 from Verizon, whereas Cash for Smart Phones is offering $200 for the same model. When you’re selling your smart phone, a few minutes of research can really pay off.
2) Sell it through a website. Depending on what kind of phone you have, it may be better to bypass the pawn shops and sell the device yourself through a retail site like Amazon or eBay. For the iPhone we just mentioned, bidding on eBay tops out at about $200, but the going rate on Amazon is a surprising $300.
Just keep in mind that these sites won’t let you use their services for free. Both Amazon and eBay charge sales fees that can cost you as much as 10% of your total selling price. Keep this in mind when making your decision to sell.
3) Sell it in the classifieds. Never underestimate the power of Craigslist and other local classifieds. Buyers who browse these outlets are often doing so because they don’t want to deal with the hassle of purchasing something online and waiting for it to ship. As such, they’re often willing to pay a slight premium for the product.
For instance, the iPhone that was going for $200 online is going for between $250 to $375 on the New York City Craigslist, depending on the phone’s condition. There is no seller fee to contend with here, either. The only downside is that you have to be willing to respond to multiple emails and set up a meeting with your buyer to close the sale. Depending on your schedule (or your fear of social interaction), that could be difficult.
Selling your used cell phone isn’t always a great way to make money. For instance, an older device like a Droid 2 will only fetch about $40 on a good day. But if you’re in possession of a popular handset – especially a Nexus or an older iPhone – then it’s easy to dump your old device in exchange for enough money to finance a shiny new one. In fact, you might even have enough left over to get a few fancy accessories for your new iPhone 5 as well. Now that’s certainly something worth talking about.