Make Money From Old Electronics


Techradar, my new favourite read for all things techy, has posted 10 ways to turn your old tech into cash.

In truth, not all 10 will earn you money, but are their tips, along with my thoughts:

  1. Sell your stuff on Amazon – I have to say, I’m pretty eBay-centric when it comes to flogging old stuff (probably like the rest of the population), and I haven’t had any experience of selling online elsewhere. But Amazon Marketplace is also worth a try if your goods are in great condition.
  2. Use Computer Exchange – this is a shop I’ve had the dubious honour of visiting recently – whilst you can certainly get some bargains when buying there, my personal experience of the place wasn’t the best. But perhaps that is more to do with our local shop, rather than the chain in general, and it looks like it could be a good place to sell electronics – you can get an idea of how much they’ll be willing to pay for your items on their website.
  3. Use the classifieds – there are still buyers out there scouring classified ads, so this might be a low-tech solution to getting rid of your high-tech gagdets. Craig’s List is mentioned, and although this is a big name in the US, it doesn’t seem to have caught on as much over here yet, at least in my experience.
  4. Dismantle it – although you might only get small sums for old PC components, you may still be able to sell RAM, harddrives etc., and this might be easier than selling a complete system that’s a few years old.
  5. Deactivate software – you have to be very careful when selling software. In most cases, this is not something you’re supposed to do, and if you are doing it, you should make sure you’re uninstalling it from your own PC.
  6. Refurbish and gift – although not strictly a making money idea, rather than spending money on gifts, can your old electronics be gifted to someone else? Old PCs can be given a new lease of life with new components and can be more than adequate put to use as a child’s first computer.
  7. Think different – you’ll have to be a bit geeky to do something like this, but old components can be put to use in a different way, such as turning an old PC into a digital TV recorder. Again, more money saving than money making, but the effect on your wallet is effectively the same.
  8. Freecycle it – if you can’t sell your items, then there may be someone in your area who will come and take it off your hands, thanks to Freecycle.
  9. Donate it to charity – charities are also on the lookout for electronics that could be used in schools or elsewhere. Try out IT for Charities or Donate A PC for more information.
  10. Dispose of it safely – if all else fails, and no-one will buy it off you or even take it off your hands for nothing, you need to make sure that you dispose of your equipment safely and securely. To find a list of companies that will dispose of it, try Waste Online or your local council should also be able to help.

A couple of things I would add to the list would be the good old-fashioned car boot sale – whilst you might not get much for your items there, there is a good chance they’ll sell. Also, if it’s an old mobile phone you’re looking to get rid of, give Envirofone a try.

If the item you’re trying to sell is particularly old, it may even be valuable to a collector.

What ideas do you have for getting rid of old electronics, and hopefully making some money into the bargain? I’m also interested in hearing your thoughts on being a “geek on the cheap” – where is it best to go to get cheap electronics, gadgets and computer components? Let us know in the comments below.

Creative Commons License photo credit: zolierdos

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