With the release of the new generation iPhone likely to be announced within the next month, it’s time to start thinking about where you’re going to sell your old iPhone. One thing that’s certain is that it’s always better to sell your iPhone the month before Apple announces its new model. Once Apple announces its new iPhone and opens the pre-order gates the used iPhone market becomes a madhouse.

The value of a pre-owned iPhone X, iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus is likely to drop by well over $100 in the week following their Keynote. So if at all possible, sell your iPhone right now and use an old phone you have lying around in the meantime. Once you’re ready to sell you’ll find a myriad of selling options. They all have merit but the best fit for you depends on how much work you want to put into selling it and how fast you need the cash.

Apple GiveBack

Apple GiveBack certainly doesn’t have the best buying prices but they’re at least fair and you can walk into any Apple Store and walk out with a gift card in a matter of minutes. Getting paid on the spot in a safe environment is a huge selling point of their service. Apple GiveBack is a good option provided that you have an Apple Store nearby, don’t mind being paid with an Apple Store Gift Card (they don’t offer cash) and have a fully functional iPhone (they don’t buy broken phones). They do have a mail-in option as well but we wouldn’t recommend it. Their advertised turn-around time for getting paid is “about 2-3 weeks”. If you don’t mind shipping your iPhone there are faster options that have higher payouts and are just as easy.  


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If you want the highest price possible for your iPhone and don’t mind jumping through a few hoops to get it, eBay might be the perfect fit. With eBay, you’re cutting out the middleman and offering your device up to individual buyers who are actively searching for it. Generally speaking, this means that you’re going to get the actual market value for your iPhone.

That being said, there are quite a few steps that you need to take in order to get that great price. You’ll need to set up an eBay account if you don’t already have one as well as a PayPal account. Then you’ll need to take photos of your iPhone and write up a description of the item. From there you need to decide if you want to do an auction-style listing or a buy it now listing and specify your asking price if applicable as well as any shipping fees or taxes you need to charge.

If your buyer didn’t pay immediately you may need to wait a few days for them to pay and if they don’t pay at all you’ll need to re-list the item a second time. Once you’ve been paid the best-case scenario is that you’ll ship the item, transfer the funds from your PayPal account to your bank and you’ll have a happy buyer and a fatter wallet.

In the not so best-case scenario, your buyer may be unhappy with the item and open an eBay money-back guarantee claim or PayPal claim. The worst-case scenario, while rare, is that your buyer is a criminal who will use fraudulent claims to leave you without your phone or the money.

Something else to keep in mind is that eBay charges a 10% final value fee and if you have a new account PayPal may hold your funds for up to 2 weeks before releasing them to you. In the end, all that work may land you an extra $30 – $80 more than you might have gotten elsewhere. That’s a sizable chunk of change and the decision to use eBay really comes down to how much time and risk you’re willing to spend to get it.


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Swappa is very similar to eBay in that you’re listing your iPhone for sale on their marketplace and they’re connecting individual buyers and sellers. Like eBay, you’ll need to make a Swappa account, take photos of your iPhone, write a description and ship it out if it sells. You also incur the same kinds of returns and fraud risks. Swappa’s main advantage over eBay is that you don’t pay any selling fees whatsoever. The buyer pays for them. If you’re selling a high-end smartphone like an iPhone X that means you’ll save at least $50 in fees vs using eBay. The only downfall is that Swappa’s user base is much smaller than eBay’s so it may take longer to find a willing buyer.

Sell it locally

Finding a local buyer is a great option for selling your iPhone because you can usually get a relatively high payout and get paid cash on the spot. The best options for selling locally include Craiglist, Letgo, and Facebook for-sale pages. To find a Facebook for-sale group just search for your city name and “for sale” on the Facebook search bar and you’re certain to find some local for-sale pages.

For the best results, you’ll still need to take a few photos of your iPhone and write a brief description of the condition. It’s also important that you know how much your iPhone is worth before listing it for sale locally. You’ll know you listed it for too little if you get a ton of interested buyers within a few hours.

On the flip side, you may need to lower the price if it’s been 2 days and you still don’t have any interested buyers. It’s important to remember that selling locally isn’t for everyone and there can be some negative aspects. Sometimes buyers will waste your time by meeting you and then backing out of the sale or sometimes they don’t show up at your meeting place at all.

Buyers may also try “talking you down” on the price. Selling locally also has the potential to be very dangerous if you’re not careful. While rare, people do occasionally get robbed using these local selling platforms. It’s extremely important that you only meet with buyers at public places. For additional peace of mind you may also want to try getting a little bit of background info about your buyer by searching for them on social media platforms before agreeing to meet.

If a buyer agrees to your price make sure they pay you in cash. Any requests to pay via check, money order, PayPal, etc are almost sure to be scams. Counterfeit currency can also be a problem so make sure you have at least some basic knowledge on spotting fake bills or deposit them into an ATM to verify they’re legit before handing over your iPhone.

BuyBack Websites

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Buyback websites like ours are by far the easiest method of selling your iPhone. You just get an instant quote online, ship your iPhone and wait for your payment to arrive after your iPhone has been evaluated. The offers from buyback websites can be very competitive, even when compared to selling on marketplaces like eBay. While a phone may sell for $250 on eBay that’s not taking into account eBay fees, PayPal fees and shipping fees. After paying all of those fees you may only see $200 of the $250 selling price. With most buyback websites you won’t encounter any of those kinds of expenses. Something to keep in mind when using buyback websites is that their quotes and quality of service can vary widely. Make sure you read the fine print so you know how long they take to evaluate your device and compare their prices with competitors. Most importantly, look up their online reviews to see how other customers felt about their experience. Keep GadgetGone in mind if you decide to sell your iPhone to a buyback website. We offer free shipping, fast payments and our online reviews speak for themselves. The best part; we have the highest prices around and back that up with a price match guarantee. We encourage you to do your research but think you’ll agree that GadgetGone offers the best total package for selling your iPhone online.

Donate it

If you’re in the giving spirit consider donating your iPhone to charity. Most charities won’t actually give your iPhone to someone in need, rather they’ll sell it themselves and use the proceeds to help fund their cause. A few such charities include Sprint’s 1Million Project and Cell Phones for soldiers.

1Million Project sells or recycles your old iPhone and uses that cash to give underprivileged high school students a free mobile device and unlimited internet access. Having a reliable internet connection is something many of us take for granted. For students that don’t have that luxury, it makes doing homework, research projects and learning new concepts very difficult. Sprint calls this the “homework gap” and your iPhone could help solve it.

Cell Phones for Soldiers use the proceeds from selling your iPhone to invest in buying minutes of talk time for our troops at home and overseas. Being able to call home is a huge morale booster when you’re on duty for long periods of time; but especially for those abroad, it’s cost inhibitive to call home as much as they’d like. International calls aren’t cheap. Cell Phones for Soldiers help ease that burden by giving military members up to 3 hours of completely free call time per month.

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