Helping clients get rid of electronic clutter is one of the toughest parts of my job, but it’s also one of the most lucrative for them. Did you know you might be able to trade-in or sell your old gear, and when you do, your old electronic clutter finally pays off?
Do you have an old computer or smartphone taking up space in your home? The longer it sits, the more likely it won’t be worth anything at all. Don’t let that happen. Take a few minutes to find out if that old techno-trash might be worth something to you.
Trade Ins Make Electronic Clutter Finally Pay Off
If you are ready to upgrade your smartphone, you might get money from trading in your old one with your cell phone carrier. The big three (Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile) all have attractive trade-in plans for existing AND new customers. Weigh the value of passing your aging phone down to a family member versus just buying them a newer one or a pre-owned model (see below). Don’t keep your old phone if you are just going to throw it into a drawer. Old phones lose value every day they sit in that drawer. Should you change carriers to lock in one of those new phone + service deals? You probably don’t want to if your cell phone coverage is solid. Get the latest info on which wireless providers are offering the service you need.
Check Apple Trade In to find out how much your old Mac, MacBook, iPhone, and other gear are worth. My client took in five old Apple devices last month to the local Apple store and came home to an uncluttered home with a gift card for $175. Not bad.
There’s a big market for used cell phones and gaming consoles. Check out the CNET review of online electronic buy-back services that purchase cell phones and other devices. ProTip: They are great sources to buy your next phone, too.
I much prefer to trade in with a name I know. Best Buy also has a trade-in program, and it accepts a broad range of items, including dSLR cameras and old game cartridges.
Speaking of a name you know, Amazon also has a buyback/trade-in program which also takes in gear like smart speakers and routers. I’m about to trade in my kids’ Kindles, since my kids are bonded to their laptops now. Even if I only get a few dollars for them, at least I’ll get one more power-sucking device out of my house.
For instant gratification, look for these kiosks that give you instant cash for old phones. I spotted this one (below) in the front of Walmart recently. Bonus points for recycling your plastic bags at the drop off bins, too.
If you have some wacky electronic gear that has specialty appeal or could only be used for parts, you could list it on eBay and maybe sell it yourself. This might take longer, so start soon.
Recycle Old Electronics that You Can’t Trade In
If you can’t find any takers for old gear, especially ancient computers, Staples continues to recycle old computers. They can also copy old photos and documents off the computer before you recycle it, and they can remove the hard drive to protect your identity, so make that appointment now. (If you are a photo organizing client of ours, we do that for our photo clients, too, and we come to you! No drop off required.)
This barrel at my local Whole Foods won’t give you cash, but it’s a good drop point for really old cell phones with no trade-in value. That really old flip phone you are keeping for “just in case” probably won’t even work on the 5G networks rolling out this year.
During the milder seasons, many communities have recycling events where you can drop these items off, too. Some are listed in the HeartWork Organizing Shredding Events Page. In the Philadelphia region, you can also schedule a pickup from your home or business through PAR Recycle Works for a small fee; check in your area for a similar service.
The secondary market is always changing, so don’t sit on this idea too long, or you’ll be shut out. It’s so satisfying when you can make your electronic clutter finally pay off with real $$$.
Electronics is one of many categories that you can organize with SORT and Succeed. Take the short, free SORT and Succeed mini course now to get started.