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How to Buy and Sell Used Smartphones

Updated: Oct 8, 2018


Buying used can be a great way to get a good deal!


Buying and selling used smartphones can be a great way to get a good deal or earn some extra cash. Use these checklists to protect yourself from scams and follow the best practices!


When buying:

  • Use sites like eBay, Facebook Marketplace, Craigslist, Swappa, or OfferUp to find phones.

  • Compare prices for similar devices and check listings marked as sold.

  • Ask for the model number and storage amount. These factors could significantly affect the price.

  • Make sure the phone is paid off. Phones that are not paid off could be reported as stolen and become blacklisted, making them unusable.

  • Determine if the phone is locked to a carrier or network unlocked. Some smartphone models are incompatible with other carriers, so check WillMyPhoneWork to make sure the phone will be compatible with the carrier you want to use.

  • Ask for the IMEI number and check for blacklisting. If a phone is blacklisted, this means it was reported lost or stolen and is ineligible for activation. This can be checked with the Swappa ESN Checker.

  • If buying an iPhone, make sure the iCloud account is removed.

  • Ask about previous repairs or water damage. Replacement parts may have been low quality and previous water damage can result in corrosion that will shorten the life of the device.

When selling:

  • If the phone is Android, back up phone information to a Google account and remove the account when finished.

  • If the phone is an iPhone, back up phone information to iCloud and remove the account when finished.

  • Reset the phone to factory settings to erase all data.

  • Remove the sim card from the phone.

  • When listing the phone, include relevant details about the condition of the phone and add any accessories available.

  • Take well-lit photos on a solid background that contrasts with the device.

  • Do not sell to buyers overseas with no reviews.

  • Do not ship the phone on local listing sites or sell for more than your listed price.

Genius Repair Solutions also buys and sells used devices, so if you want to save yourself some trouble, stop by our store and we will take care of you! If you found this information helpful, be sure to share it and check out some of the links below.


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