Sell Used Photo Gear
Selling your used equipment for the best price is easier and safer than you thought, provided that you follow these tips and deal with the right buyer. So if you’re considering weeding out a few of your seldom-used lenses or the cameras you’ve outgrown, here are some tips to consider as you decide who should be buying it from you.
When selling your old equipment
When deciding on a seller, make sure you do thorough research as well as gather as much information as possible to help you find the best buyer. The first thing on our list: Don’t rush through getting rid of something that doesn’t fit or use up in the time frame that it takes to sell it. If you don’t have the money to buy new gear, try finding an offer where, at no additional cost, you can buy used gear. You may even get an extra $50 or so towards the sales price.
Next thing you know, you have all the details you need to make an informed decision. Find a person who knows when the item is available and how much you can expect to pay. Be realistic about this because there’s always been a risk of overpricing when selling anything and everything. Make sure that the buyer is willing and able to spend more but also understands what sells best and why. This step shouldn’t take too long because it requires only $100 or so to start and sometimes less if the item has lots of history. As long as it is in good condition, it’s probably better to go to market and let them work their way through instead of trying to hold back and wait for that perfect opportunity. When I sold my entire home collection (including furniture) to a New York City real estate agent, he told me he’d had a lot of offers and said no problem! Now that’s great news: It can happen for almost any item you find online where a listing is already done. After some research, you can figure out who is best for the item and if they are likely to meet your expectations.
We don’t recommend leaving your items to languish in storage, like old toys, games and electronics that can easily go to waste. However, you may be surprised by the amount of people out there who will gladly give you things for “free,” just because someone threw them away and then decided they were worth nothing. Take advantage of being offered a wide variety of options when choosing a prospective seller, not to feel undervalued or ignored by anyone. And remember the common saying: ‘The grass is greener on the other side.’
Sell a lot of stuff, mostly stuff in good condition
When you choose a seller, be aware that they are often not interested in selling everything but rather in selling a little bit of everything. In fact, many times they’ll be looking to cut down on your expenses by selling small quantities of very specific items. While a piece of art may bring $50-$70 per painting, perhaps less valuable items such as a TV remote, lamps, bookshelf units or a coat rack can come in even cheaper, giving you enough cash to save you at least $100.
If you still think you want to keep certain items, consider a sale where you get an option of keeping an average of 4–6 items, including several different things. If buyers aren’t going to want to pay an upfront price that’s above what you’d like to give them, then you may be better off by cutting back a bit on costs, like advertising and selling smaller quantities, and using the rest as bonuses or gifts. Use this time wisely while looking for the best place to sell.
Buy a big piece, get high value-for-money deals
When deciding on a seller, you may need to weigh the price against the value of a bigger piece (or pieces) that usually sell well together. Think back to those days when you bought your first car, figuring out what car would run the longest, which car could perform best as well as others in the same class. That knowledge was key to understanding the pros and cons of each car you owned, but you couldn’t exactly put that knowledge to good use.
When you decide to sell your older items now, the most important consideration is the “why,” which is the reason for selling any item at all. Are you moving to see relatives? Do you love it but don’t want to move? Is it for travel or fun or entertaining? A little bit of both certainly makes sense. But to sell a large piece of equipment, the choice must be one that’s either a luxury or a necessity. Perhaps an old car or one of those fancy walker toys will draw the line. There are many factors when deciding on the wrong-for-money deal, like whether the seller will be giving a bonus or a gift, but it usually boils down to what is needed the most. What are the needs of yourself and/or the person selling the item? Ask yourself, why do I need this item? Does the item use much energy and require maintenance? Or does it simply become annoying after a while? Whatever your answers are, consider what the item is really intended to do: What is it intended to accomplish by selling or keeping it?
The last thing that you want to do when selling items quickly (even if they’re never sold) is lose the best-in-class item that you’ve always wanted but didn’t enjoy owning or use as much as you would have liked it. At its core, selling your items at an auction isn’t the same as keeping them. Buyers don’t care about price per se – it’s all about quality. Before you finalize the deal, consider asking yourself some questions about the item: Can it actually function again? Will it be usable for as long as it takes to be repaired? Could it provide entertainment value? Might it be needed for traveling?
There’s nothing quite like shopping around that way once a week when you know you’re running low on something that you desperately need! Don’t forget: Most new item sales happen when items are on clearance and are often discounted to encourage potential buyers to purchase them from other sellers. By offering a little discount to your current buyers, you’ll create an environment in which they know that you believe in their ability to pay for the item.
Don’t ignore the internet
When it comes to buying any type of item, the internet may have something to offer you. Whether you intend on selling a particular item or deciding between two similarly-sized items, your first option might be a random Amazon search. However, beware: Not everyone has the best record when it comes to selling a product and not only Amazon. Many sellers have experienced bad luck before. Check with sellers and see what they say. Look at a couple of reviews sites, especially Trustpilot. Ask friends who have experienced similar problems to look up reviews. Visit the company’s Web site. Searching, browsing and researching online can save you time and money of buying a replacement. Remember, the point is to avoid mistakes. These kinds of purchases make life easier for customers and sellers alike. The more you research, the more confident you will be that you really want the best option for a given item.
After doing thorough research, decide who gets the job. Don’t hesitate to turn some heads online by describing the products or services you want to sell. Maybe you’re lucky enough to find an item on Craigslist that looks like an upgrade or a better quality than what you were previously offered. They may be better off in your eyes and have a higher chance of converting into a full-time business. Get referrals from local vendors and watch what they do. Often, sellers themselves are eager to accept recommendations and talk about what they’ve brought home from previous jobs. If they haven’t tried other options during their time in the industry, it can be hard for the vendor to trust you. A good guide to the whole process is making a list of what you’ve seen, whether the item was a good item or something that you didn’t like for whatever reasons. Then, identify a number of people who know your name who might work on that item. Call them and invite them to check it out. If they say yes, send a copy of the item or ask them to come to pick it up.
Once you have all of this information, decide how and when you’ll do your final call. Some people prefer to set up an appointment with a friend, family member or colleague immediately, while others may prefer to wait until next week for an email that contains the necessary info on how to apply. Either way, be prepared for questions and concerns. Don’t take everything you read personally and go directly to whoever tells you, unless you absolutely know they are doing everything right.