Turning old electronics into cash

In this economic climate, any time you have the opportunity to make a few extra bucks you usually make it happen. Maybe you do a little side work for cash, have a yard sale to get rid of unused items or post items to an online flea market in hopes of getting a few bucks. I do all of these things on occasion. Recently I needed to sell an older laptop that I had sitting around collecting dust. The laptop still worked but it was large, too hot to put on your lap and not getting any use. So I shopped around for what my options were to turn the laptop into cash.

At first I posted an ad on our bulletin board at work. The ad had a picture of the laptop, some of it’s specs and a reasonable price. While I had a few inquiries I didn’t get any real buyers. So I took the ad down and looked for other avenues.

Tip: Before doing business with anyone you are not familiar be sure you do a Google search for the business name followed by “scam” or “experiences”. You can also look up the business with the Better Business Bureau. A little research could save you headaches down the road.

Next I checked eBay for prices on the particular model I was trying to sell. There were a few laptops like it listed there but they were nearing the end of their auction and no one had bid on them. I want to turn this laptop into cash and I don’t want to wait around for an auction to end or give the laptop away for pennies because no one was really interested. Again, I looked for other avenues.

I did a few searches on Google for “selling a laptop” and this is when I started finding shops that actually buy used laptops and other electronics. So I started clicking on the links to see what they were all about. All the sites I found worked the same way: you enter the model number and some specs into a form, choose what condition the electronic is in and then the price that particular site is willing to offer appears. If you find the price acceptable you enter some personal information and you get further instructions. Some of the sites pay for shipping and packaging some do not. *See the table below.

Tip: Before sending any of your devices away be sure to delete all personal files and applications you installed, clear caches/passwords/history/etc and empty the trash. One application I enjoy using is CCleaner. It’s a free application that optimizes your computer and removes the clutter from your browsing.

With the first few sites I became a little concerned because they were offering much less than I was hoping to get for my laptop. Before I gave up on the “buy your laptop” sites I found Jay Brokers. Jay Brokers gives you two options: you can see what the FMV or “Fair Market Value” for your device is from historical data via eBay sales or you can fill out a form to get a personalize “guaranteed” quote. The guaranteed quote is “guaranteed” if you are truthful with the information you enter in the form about your device. A quote was emailed to me within 24 hours and it was $100 MORE than any of the other sites. Needless to say I was very happy but still a little skeptical. My next move was to send the laptop to someone I’m not familiar with in hopes of getting the money they guaranteed. Jay Brokers does not pay for shipping and packaging but I knew it would be around $20 ($13 for shipping, $7 for the packaging) from my past experience of sending a laptop out for refunds or repairs. Off to UPS I went and away the laptop shipped.

Two days later I got an email from Jay Brokers that they received the package and will be in the process of testing the device to make sure it works per the data I entered into their form. Within 24 hours I got another email that said the money has been placed in my PayPal account. That was it. A very painless and quick service. From my experience I give Jay Brokers a 5 out of 5 stars for providing an honest and transparent service.

Provider Device(s) Bought Pays Shipping/Handling
Jay Brokers Laptops, Handhelds/PDAs, iPods/MP3 Players, Desktops, Digital Cameras, Camcorders, LCD Monitors, Projectors, GPS, Cell Phones and more no
Cash for Laptops Laptops, Smart Phones and Blackberrys yes
Laptops into Cash Laptops yes
Laptop Trader Express Laptops yes

I can only speak of my experience with http://www.jaybrokers.com and from that experience I recommend them for getting rid of devices you no longer use. They offered $100 more than the closest competitor and in some cases almost $200 more.

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