Looking to get cash for your old computer, laptop, or tablet? Or, do you want to trade-in your existing PC components to upgrade your system? In this guide, we’ve discussed how to sell your old computer, PC parts, laptop, and/or tablet.
When the time comes to upgrade your PC, tablet or laptop, chances are you’re just going to leave the old one kicking around in a drawer until you finally have a mass clear out or move. Typically, it ends up just getting thrown at this stage, where it goes off to landfill messing with the environment and providing zero benefits to you.
When it comes to selling your PC, it turns out there are plenty of marketplaces like eBay where consumers want to pick up spare hardware parts or save on getting a used computer. To help you figure out what can get done with your old hardware and tablets, I’ve put together this handy guide with tips on selling, what happens with software licenses and where to value your old PC and parts.
Before you start, it’s important to figure out a few things to see if the whole process is worth the effort. You might be selling entire computers, laptops or tablets that may require considerable shipping costs, or CPUs, SSDs, Processors, and RAM that are easier to send.
- How old is the computer or hardware you’re selling? One thing is for sure, if your device or parts are only a few years old then they are worth enough to sell and probably in demand. If not, then you might want to consider local listings with pickup only to minimize your effort.
- Quickly estimate the resale offer – Note down the device name / serial number or anything else that can help you quickly find it on eBay and see how much they’ve sold for in the past. From this, you can estimate the effort reward ratio and know what value to list the components you’re selling for online.
- Does the value of the device outweigh fees and shipping costs? – If you’re selling an entire computer, it may be a large heavy package that will push up your shipping costs. Typically the costs are determined by package size, weight, distance, and timescale, for a quick estimate you can use UPS’s cost calculator. You can always add the shipping cost on top of the value, don’t forget it and get stung!
- Don’t forget the selling fees – Sites like eBay charge fees to sell your old computer parts, whereas most trade-in and classified ad sites don’t. You should be conscious of what these fees are and add them into your resale budget.
- Can you sell computer parts or tablets near you? The other option is to use local listing (classified ad) sites like Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist. Selling components on these sites are typically free, and can often attract a quick sale if you’re living in highly populated areas. Just be realistic on the likelihood that someone near you would want the parts you’re selling, e.g. if there are 100 people in your town, then it’s probably not going to happen.
- How quickly do you need the money? If you need the funds from your sale fast then a trade-in site is the best option. You’ll get a quick upfront quote and payment as soon as they receive the device. Other options like auctions sites and classified ads will depend on other people’s demand for your device or hardware.
Unsure of what you’re selling? We’ve got a guide here on how to find your computer specs that may help you – it’s super easy to follow.
In most cases, you’ll get more money selling your devices through a classified ad or auction website. However, the amount of effort to go through and list everything in detail, take photos, package and ship everything is pretty depressing, especially if there’s not a lot of resale money involved.
People also tend to consider trade-in websites as some enterprise-grade parts may be difficult to sell as they’re in much less demand than say, standard graphics cards (for example).
This is where trade-in websites come in, you can sell your old computer parts for cash by getting an instant quote, and they often front the shipping costs for you. This will also remove the potential waiting period for someone actually to find and want your device on craigslist or eBay.
Stand out options for selling old PC’s, Laptops and tablets:
- IT Connected – Sell desktops, laptops, and parts
- SellGPU – Desktops, laptops, servers, consoles, and parts
- BankMyCell – Selling iPads, tablet PC’s, consoles and phones
1. IT Connected
This company will value your old desktop, laptop with ease. You can either enter the details or simply download a program from their site that will scan your computer and do the techie work for you. They will also take your computer peripherals like keyboards, speakers, hard drives, cables, and mouse, letting you dispose of all the kit in an eco-friendly way.
Shipping wise, IT Connected they have a variety of options where you can print out labels, get packaging sent to you or even organize a UPS pickup. They will always cover up to $7.48 of the shipping too.
In terms of selling computer components, IT connected will take the following parts:
- Hard Drives
- Memory (RAM)
- Optical Drives
- Raid cards
- Video cards
- Network adaptors
Visit their trade-in site here: IT Connected
You can use this company specifically to sell your old components for cash. Again it’s straightforward to use, just visit the website, select your device from the drop downs and get an instant offer.
What’s more, SellGPU sends you a free mailer pack to post all your items for free, so it’s a pretty easy task to organize. Once they check the component out to make sure it passes the tests (e.g. it works) you’ll be paid via PayPal or check.
In terms of the computer components you can trade-in, SellGPU offer cash for:
- Mining Rig
- Games Consoles
Visit their trade-in site here: SellGPU
This site is excellent for selling old tablet PC’s (and phones). If you have an old Microsoft Surface Pro or iPad that you want to trade-in for cash, you can get an instant quote from several different vendors in one place. BankMyCell will display the trade-in store offering the most money for your old tablet.
The process is effortless again, you find the tablet you’re looking to sell by its brand, name, storage size and any carrier connectivity. Place a tablet trade-in order with the vendor you choose, and they’ll send a FREE shipping pack out to your designated address. Once they’ve received the device and checked it’s in the condition you stated, you’ll be paid via direct deposit, PayPal or check.
- Sell Tablets
- Sell iPads
- Sell iPhones
- Sell Cell Phones
Visit their trade-in site here: BankMyCell
Making the old computer, laptop or tablet you’re selling easy to find is key, especially if it’s computer parts you’re selling. Consider that most people may not know what they’re looking for and by adding key search terms into the listing can get your ad in front of the right people.
- Provide useful photos – Take photos of all angles of the device you’re selling, include part numbers / serial numbers if present on the device (typically these are on a sticker or stamped into the casing of the device). It’s also an opportunity to be upfront about any damage on the device, and people often don’t read the descriptions in full if you mention it in there.
- Make your listing title hyper descriptive – To get your listing found first in the search, write down the exact name of the part or device (Tip: see what others use on eBay). I like using the format of [device name] + [type of device] + [part number] + [vital compatibility], for example: NVIDIA GeForce GTX 480 Graphics Card ENGTX480/2DI/1536MD (Windows 7-10)
- List the part details you would search for – It would be a good idea to find the specification and compatibility of your device on Google and include it. For example, if someone’s looking for a graphics card that works on Windows 7, or a spare battery for a specific laptop, it would be good for the buyer to get this confirmation. You can find this sort of info in seconds by searching the part number and ‘specification’ in Google or checking the manufacturers’ website.
- What would you want to know? Why are you selling the device? Is it new or used, working or broken? Letting someone know that your computer case has a scuff or the bottom corner of a tablet screen is cracked is pretty essential and resolves any future disputes.
So right about now you’re probably looking pretty confused as to what’s the best option for selling your old computer parts or laptop, right? Below I’ve put together a handy graphic for you to see what the benefits are:
So you know where you want to sell or trade-in your computer, but now you have ‘the fear’ in terms of what needs to be done to clean your personal data from the device in question.
Here are some helpful tips:
Virus Scan: Before you pass on some old malware which is a potential security threat to someone (especially if it’s a private sale) you should give the computer a full scan. If you don’t have any antivirus software don’t waste any more money, there are plenty that will take care of it for free, however Kaspersky, Avast and Bitdefender offer the most comprehensive versions for free.
Backup your data: When you sell your old computer, you’ll probably have a load of photos, applications, and files you want to move to a new device. Here are the options you can explore:
- Backup your computer with an external hard drive
- Backup with Google Drive OneDrive / Dropbox
- Transfer data with PCmover
- Clone your hard drive with Macrium Reflect
Delete your data! Of course, the next step is to make sure you don’t have any personal files as well as essential logins and card details stored in your browser. You can reinstall Windows, and this will wipe the drive to an acceptable standard. Alternatively, a service like DBAN by Blanco is a must; it will deep clean your computer so even files you simply deleted will be impossible to recover. Just keep in mind if someone is collecting they may want to test the computer to make sure it has an operating system on it, and you restrict the programs at startup, so it boots up quick.
Can I resell with the software? If you’re looking to trade in your old computer with software on for some extra cash (e.g., Microsoft Office), you might be able to without breaking any copyright laws. The only place that this gets covered is in the EULA (end user licensing agreement) which is that massive terms page that you never read. So, if you want to bundle in software, that’s what you need to check.
Selling my tablet: You’ll need to remove any services like iCloud / Find My Phone and perform a factory reset on your device before selling. These settings are all in similar locations no matter what the operating system, navigate to the phone’s settings to backup and then perform a factory reset. If you have an Android device make sure you remove any MicroSD cards that you have in the tablet.
And that’s a wrap! Let me know in the comments if you think of anything I’ve missed or if you have any questions!