5 Things to Remember When Selling Your Old Flagship

Counterpoint, a multinational tech analysis and research firm, says that in 2017 the refurbished and used smartphone segment has grown a surprising 13% year-on-year. This is an especially interesting trend for people who like to play with and test out the latest and greatest handsets out there. Regularly purchasing the most premium smartphones, after all, is not a cheap hobby. Knowing that there’s a huge market waiting for old flagships, therefore, is a huge boost in confidence for people who’ve made purchasing the most expensive smartphones a habitual activity.
Smartphones have become so powerful and durable that the need to truly replace them because of breakage or outdatedness has become a rare occurrence. Even phones from 2012 such as the iPhone 6 are still very capable devices up to this day.
Some of the chipsets on these flagships have become so powerful they can even run a full Windows desktop experience. They can handle almost anything that the internet can throw at them. Smartphones these days are also tougher than ever with water and dust proofing becoming standard flagship features. Instead of the predominantly plastic build from a few years ago, aluminum and tough-as-nails gorilla glass have become the standard in materials used to protect the internals.
Despite the greatly diminished practical need to replace smartphones, manufacturers such as Samsung and Apple keep churning out newer, albeit iterative, versions of their flagships that enthusiasts just couldn’t help but buy. “The slowdown in innovation has made two-year-old flagship smartphones comparable in design and features with the most recent mid-range phones,” says Counterpoint. This creates a surplus in the previous year’s still totally relevant flagship phones. At this point, the only thing left to do short of prematurely displaying old flagships inside museums is to resell them.
If you’re a smartphone enthusiast and you care about having and experiencing the latest and greatest features, then this might be reselling your phones to make up the costs of buying the latest ones might be an interesting proposition. It does not only help you recoup the cost of your lifestyle a little bit, it would also help someone who had been salivating over a newer phone but cannot afford to pay full price for it.
Here are some tips on how to maximize your phone’s resale value so you can make the cost of purchasing the newest flagship a little bit more bearable.

1. Be quick about it

There’s a new flagship phone releasing every few months and with each one, the buzz hanging over flagships that are just a couple of months old slowly goes away. This essentially makes its resale value go down as well. Your asking price for your phone, therefore, relies heavily on when you decide to sell it.
Generally, it’s best to sell mid-cycle or a few months after your phone was released and a few months before a new version one is about to launch. This way, you’re always carrying the top-of-the-line smartphones and you’ll never have to deal with age-related issues such as battery drain and performance drops.
“Try to sell it before the newer generation version of your smartphone is released. People love hearing the phone they are buying is the “latest flagship” from a manufacturer. I keep an older smartphone around at all times, which I use in between the ones I buy and sell to help with this,” says Android Authority.

2. Research the competition

You won’t be alone in this endeavor. You’re likely going to have competition in selling the model that you’re carrying. Knowing how much your handset is selling in the second-hand and refurbished market is perhaps the most important thing to do because it lets you set the baseline price for your precious flagship.
You don’t only learn about your phone’s pricing when you’re doing your research. It also helps you get a hint of what people are buying so you can forecast which new flagship you can buy that has a better resale value in the future. Apple’s iPhone X, for example, has an excellent resell value because it’s bound to become a collector’s item as a landmark phone for the company.

3. Assess the condition and determine a fair price

But knowing how much the competition is selling for is not the same as knowing your handset’s worth. To determine that, there are other pressing issues that need to be considered.
The condition, for example, is a huge factor in determining how to fairly price your smartphone. If it has dings and scratches, you should probably price it lower than the baseline. What you want to avoid completely are cracks on the screen because it brings the price down by up to 50% even if the handset functions perfectly.
With this in mind, there may be low-cost fixes that you can do to make your phone as close to pristine as possible. Prevention, they say, is the best cure. This means that preventing imperfections is the most important thing if you’re planning on reselling your phone in the future. It would be wise to put your phone inside a case at the very beginning.
Some damages, of course, cannot be avoided. In these cases, it is best to assess whether the price bump is worth the effort of having them repaired before selling.

4. Have it unlocked

If you purchased your phone through a carrier, it’s probably locked to that network. That effectively diminishes your market as not all the potential buyers are keen on changing their network providers. Unlocking your phone, therefore, is an effective step in making sure that you’re making the most out of the high demand for pre-owned units.

5. Segment your market

Unlocking your phone aims to widen your market. That effectively raises the demand for your smartphone thus raising the potential sale price as well. This makes posting about it on all the possible sites such an alluring idea.
Casting too wide a net, however, can have adverse effects. It can attract the wrong kinds of buyers that would haggle until you bring the price down to a level you may not be comfortable with. Resellers, in particular, are people you don’t want to sell to because they intend to buy your phone at a discount and sell it for a profit. That way, they’d be pocketing dollars that would otherwise belong to you if you had just waited for the right buyer.