Those considering to purchase a phone get a lot of options, including brands, color and memory capacity. Additionally, they also get the choice of buying an almost new or used device.
People often opt for a used phone when they want a replacement of their broken phone or get it replaced by a newer model. However, the majority of people purchase used phones with the intent of saving money. It is significant to point out that, for a majority of the people who bought a used phone; it is their very first Smartphone as it helped them avoid a two year contract, which they didn’t require or found it to be beyond their reach. Another 33% customers of used phones opted for a newer model with great features, not necessarily the latest one.
How to purchase a Smartphone without any hassles
You can save some money on purchasing a used, but originally expensive Smartphone, though there are some associated risks. For instance, you need to ascertain its proper functioning and that it’s not stolen. If you are considering procuring a used phone, you will find these tips of help.
Basically, people purchase through their wireless service carriers, and because of the heavy service charges, they were getting a huge subsidy on the Smartphone. Many continue to believe they were receiving a phone at an unbelievable low price. With reduced prices, the absence of a contract, providers of wireless services and even usual wireless carriers without any contract, make the most gainful proposition for procuring a phone. There is now a perceptible shift in the thinking of the wireless service providers who have now considerably reduced their service charges, but are getting customers to pay the full price of the Smartphone or in installments. Many providers also include additional variable charges as “access fee” to connect to a device like a Smartphone, a tablet or Smart watch. These changes have ushered in a concern with Smartphone customers to increase in purchase prices of the devices and many are exploring every opportunity to reduce their exposure to higher prices by going for a used phone in good condition.
Most used phones are not locked and have no contract, allowing you to have total control over what you are paying for. You may further reduce the expense of buying a new phone on selling some of your old phones, if any.
Manufacturers of Smartphone keep introducing new models almost every year, prompting many consumers to go for the newest model, and allowing you to get very attractive deals provided you don’t mind having an instrument with the latest technology. The latest isn’t always the best!
Nevertheless, you need to be careful when procuring a secondhand Smartphone. For one, most likely you won’t get any warranty or it may be for a very small period of time, if at all. Then, you have to ensure its proper functioning. Lastly, keeping these factors in mind, you need to decide its correct price.
Exploring the correct price
The basic idea of purchasing a second hand phone is to obtain a good and expensive phone at a reduced price. This needs a bit of effort on your part. You’ll need to research and find out how many users are willing to sell their Smartphone at this time and the price they expect. If you searched on Craigslist, eBay and Swappa you’ll find many sellers, but you have to take care of a couple of things.
- Ensure that it is not locked. You can find many people disposing locked phones through eBay and Craigslist at prices lower than your expectations.
- On eBay try only ‘buy it now’ prices and not the existing bids. Bids give you an indication of the price that people may be ready to pay.
- Rather than noting the median price, note the cost of what you may be looking for. The condition of used Smart-phones varies widely. So, you should be clicking only those links, and go through their description, to assess if the condition matches your requirements.
- Find out the cost of a fresh phone of identical specifications. If you are getting a year old model of Smartphone at the cost of a comparable fresh phone, it’s not a worthwhile deal as you won’t be getting a full warranty.
- Ensure that none of the accessories is harmed. If any of those is damaged, find out how much you’ll need to spend in buying a new one and use it as a lever for negotiating a lower price.
Sources of buying
It is not easy to decide from where to procure a used phone, as all the options have their plus and minus points. The benefit of buying in person is that you can inspect the device before making payment. Online buying, on the other hand, gives you a wider selection to choose from. The main options for buying a second hand, revamped or latest Smartphone through an individual are: Craigslist, eBay, Social networks, Swappa, and friends or coworkers. Here are a few guidelines for each option.
Your best option would be to look for someone selling a phone on one of the social networks. When buying a secondhand Smartphone it helps having some kind of a connection with the seller as it builds trust. You would naturally like to buy from a trustworthy person as you have no other way to check the device. You should understand that it helps both the persons. A decent person selling a phone would also like to have a fair and clean deal.
You may be wondering why you should prefer Swappa to others. The reason is that it has an arrangement wherein you may report if somebody is selling you a stolen phone or a phone with a spoiled screen or water damage or one where the ESN (Electronic Serial Number) has been changed. In any such event, you can get a refund of your money through PayPal. As you make payment via PayPal, it is protected, plus there is a feedback system which is also connected to eBay feedback system. Moreover, Swappa verifies every listing, thus reducing the possibility of someone taking you for a ride. An outstanding aspect of Swappa is that it contains selling history chart that enables you to see the price of different models of phone. Usually, over a period of time, demand for most models comes down, but occasionally the price goes up due changed market conditions.
Though eBay contains many decent sellers, you are exposed to the risk of buying a phone with problems. If you opt to patronize eBay, ensure that you inspect feedback of sellers and also compare the price of phone to eBay history. Don’t get carried away by offers that seem too good to be true!
Dealing through Craigslist is time consuming and needs sustained effort because you have to see the seller personally and make payment in cash. You can’t be sure if the seller has made full payment to the carrier or if it is locked to the carrier. Then, it has no system of feedback, leaving you with no choice but to trust the person selling the device.
Should you opt to patronize Craigslist for procuring mobile appliances, it is recommended that you arrange a meeting with the prospective seller in some busy public area to remain safe. You should thoroughly securitize the item. Yet, you can’t rule out the possibility of its having bad ESN and if there are any outstanding dues.
When it comes to buying a second hand phone, it would be worthwhile for you to choose your phone online but be firm on meeting the seller personally. This helpful suggestion is made taking into consideration the experiences of many buyers. Buying any used phone online and getting it delivered without inspecting it in person is not advisable.
Buying online from a retailer
You could also buy a renovated, no-contract phone from the manufacturers, a wireless carrier or an online retailer. Normally, renovated phones are in good condition and many of them carry some warrantee too. On buying from an individual, you are not likely to get any warranty. Should you have any apprehension on that score, you would rather buy from a retailer.
Amazon is a huge online retailer, though you’ll need to spend a lot of time locating the kind of stuff you want. You must ensure carrier compatibility prior to making your final decision. T-Mobile data service isn’t totally maintained on every international phone. So, find out whether you are on T-Mobile or one of the associates. Also spend time to go through the policies concerning warranty and return of the retailer you intend dealing with.
Way to negotiate
Before having a personal meeting with the seller, you negotiate on price keeping in mind the description provided by the prospective seller and your own research results. You may agree it is better to prefer functionality to aesthetics of the instrument. Slight scratches here and there don’t affect the price though scratches on screen give you room for negotiating harder.
You should also convey to the prospective seller that you intend checking the phone thoroughly before putting in your own SIM. It’s the safest way to avoid dealing with a dishonest seller who might be trying to take you for a ride. The more exhaustive you are about your inspection, the better it is. A scammer would most often back out at this juncture, but an honest party readily accepts it.
While quoting your price, ensure to inform the prospective seller that the quoted price is based on the description only and you may revise the same after you inspect the piece. You’ll find it easier to act in this manner when personally meeting the seller. However, don’t use this just as a trick for bringing down the price from what you already quoted.
How to examine a secondhand Smartphone
This is how you may proceed to inspect the handset on personally meeting the seller.
- Physical inspection of phone: This is something you shouldn’t rush up. Spend time looking for scratches and dents, particularly those on the screen of the instrument or the lens of the camera.
- Opening the instrument: All things like the cover, flap and port, and the slot that contains a SIM card should be opened to ensure their proper working.
- Examine various ports: Connect your headphone into the device and check if it works. Using charger cable of your laptop, see if it gets charged from that port. In case it does, you can be certain it will get charged through a wall socket.
- Insert your personal SIM card and call a friend, send them a message and go to your pet website. This way you ensure that the functioning of the phone is normal. Should it be locked to any network and you have a SIM from a different carrier, you can know it is spot on after carrying this easy test.
- The conduct service code trial: Every Smartphone comes with a service code which allows you to access its unique menu to know if all its components are working. For instance, the code for Samsung Galaxy S3 is–*#9*#–( without dashes) and on using this code LCD test gets started to confirm the working of various parts like touch screen, speaker, cameras, dimming, vibration, RGB, receiver, sensors etc. Carry out all the tests to ensure correct working of all components.
After you have inspected the instrument and it’s time to make payment, try the last negotiating tactic. But, what can you ask for at this stage? It is realized that negotiating for just the value of getting a fresh case often works.
Warranty is always a point of concern with used phones and it is best to use a case to protect it and extend its life. Thus, the amount you negotiate equals the cost of case you may like to have for it. In case the seller is already offering a strong case you should happily accept the deal.
It is vital not to go too far during your final negotiations. When you like to part with a happy note, you shouldn’t press for a lot of freebies. A decent deal should leave all concerned happy, giving you a better opening of getting in touch with the seller, should anything go wrong later.
When you are trying to strike a deal through any social network, remember you and the seller have some common friends, so don’t negotiate too hard. If you realize it to be a good deal, accept it without looking for any further room for negotiation. This simple gesture can be quite rewarding at times with the seller suggesting you to try the phone for a few days or offering to take the instrument back and refund your money in case you are not satisfied with its performance.
Used phones offer a business opportunity for entrepreneurs
There are reports suggesting that a number of companies are beginning to resell refurbished cell phones plus other electronic devices that are lying unused with many consumers. In the not too distant future, market for used phones can be expected to be twenty percent of total sales of cell phones.