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How to Trade in Your Business’s Old Equipment for Cash

How to Trade in Your Business’s Old Equipment for Cash

by Stephanie Faris on Monday, 13 February 2017 06:00

Every business, large or small, occasionally replaces its equipment. It may simply be buying new PCs as old ones die or following a replacement cycle that upgrades PCs on an incremental basis. Either way, disposing of that equipment can be challenging for already busy businesses.

Options like recycling and donation can be quick and relatively simple, especially for businesses that use third-party providers. But in recent years, businesses have realized the benefits of exchanging that old equipment for cash or store credit. Outdated laptops, PCs, and mobile devices aren’t worth large sums of money, but over time those cash deposits can add up, helping offset the ongoing cost of purchasing new technology. Here are a few trade-in options for your business.

Electronics Stores

Many businesses will likely find the local option is the easiest, especially for items like printers and desktop computers that are difficult to ship. Large department store chains that sell electronics offer gift cards in exchange for old equipment, including Best Buy, Staples, and Office Max. If the equipment’s value has dropped too low, you can also allow these stores to recycle your equipment, eliminating the need to take that extra step yourself.


The internet has become an increasingly popular way to get cash for used items of all types. There are quite a few platforms that can help businesses offload old equipment for money. Best of all, unlike electronics stores, businesses will have cash that they can put back into their general budget, rather than being given a gift card they’ll later have to use. Gazelle is one of the simplest and most popular services, purchasing mobile devices and MacBooks. However, that ease-of-use comes with a price. Gazelle resells the equipment it purchases, so you won’t get as much money as you would selling it yourself on a site like eBay or Craigslist. If you’re willing to navigate the complications of selling through an online auction or classified site, it could be well worth it, especially if you regularly sell a great deal of equipment.


Lastly, before you offload that old equipment, pay attention to any opportunities to sell parts. Some of your desktops, servers, or laptops may be too old to resale, but the components inside the box may still be in demand. Check sites like eBay to see if similar parts are being sold. You can also offer multiple pieces of hardware on Craigslist to capture the attention of local tech teams that might be searching for those parts. Also check to see if any of your old equipment has a lawsuit attached to it, like this case against Sony, Panasonic, Hitachi-LG, and NEC for optical drives. You may find small sums of cash you wouldn’t have otherwise known about.

Whether you recycle, donate, or sell your old equipment, it’s vital that you ensure each hard drive is thoroughly wiped to avoid data falling into the wrong hands. Since many equipment buyers will request the hard drive remain with the device you’re selling, this means using the latest technology to erase the drive. Make sure you use a multi-swipe method or degaussing to ensure no piece of data remains.

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