Advice on how to sell an iphone

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Dansrom, Aug 20, 2014.

  1. Dansrom macrumors newbie

    Aug 13, 2014

    I'd like to sell my new iPhone 5s gold 64g.
    It was the replacement for my original damaged 5s.

    I have never turned it on.
    It doesn't have the plastic shields removed.
    It's just the phone in the foam sleeve the Apple store gave me.
    I think I'm scared to sell on ebay. Letting this thing go and then have the scam buyer come back and say I was dishonest or something was misrepresented or broken scares me.
    I think craigslist, meeting in person makes "better" sense.
    If so...then should turn the phone on for the buyer? Again, I'd hate to even touch this phone since it's brand new. And if I would really need to turn it on, should I be plugging it in to charge it up?
    Bottom line is I think the phone is in it's "best condition" if I don't touch the thing.

    Just thoughts here.

    I appreciate your kind advice!
  2. appleii.c macrumors 6502


    Mar 18, 2013
    If it's a legitimate iPhone (not stolen) and you are accurate in your description then your best bet would probably be to sell it on eBay only to reputable buyers. Make sure they have a buying history and good ratings. I've sold all my previous phones and even a macbook on ebay and have had only good experiences. You will likely get the most value there. Personally I am probably less trusting of Craigs List than I am of Ebay. But that's just me.

    Out of curiosity, what are you looking to make off it, more or less?
  3. EDH667 macrumors 6502a


    Nov 25, 2009
    Northern California
    I have sold several iPhones and iPads on Craigslist. include several photos on your CL advertisement and have a complete description of the iPhone. Meet at a Starbucks (or other public location) during the daylight hours. The buyer will need to turn it on and make sure it does not have an activation lock and is able to sign it into his or her account. You probably do not need to charge it since they come charged from Apple. There are a lot of flakes on CL so don't be discouraged if it takes you several days to find a good buyer. Meet local for cash and do not ship. Exchange cell phone numbers and descriptions before you meet.
  4. Dansrom thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 13, 2014
    I am very appreciative of your response!!
    Let's get this out of the way! Not stolen!
    Ok, I was thinking about the reputable buyer route. Does one let some bidder win, and then you look up their info, and find that you feel sketchy about them, and then have to cancel and start all over again, hoping you will find a good rated buyer? Or can you "throw them out" as you find bad buyers while the sale is still "live" on ebay?

    I don't know about price. I see lots. People seem to sell "unlocked." Should I unlock mine? Can I do that myself. If I don't unlock, can "they" the buyer do it themself?

    Thank you again!
  5. localboy28 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 27, 2010
    Sell on CL you'll get more money and less chance of any scammers.

    Meet in a public place with plenty of people about, try and take a mate.

    Buyer will need to see the phone working so charge it up.

    Make sure your details are all wiped including findmyiphone.
  6. Dansrom thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 13, 2014
    Thank you very much! It's nice that one person gave me the ebay route, and you suggested the craigs route. Thanks.
    So sigh, yes I guess it absolutely makes sense that I would be sitting down with the person at starbucks and would need indeed to turn it on. Hmmm, why would it have a passcode lock? I don't think it would since it has never been turned on, but I assume that 's what you mean. So I'd say we're clear there. Then, "sign on to the buyer's account" means I hand them the phone, and they "sign in" meaning into their Apple Id? In the Settings...Apple ID control location? I'm curious about specifics on what "signing in" means. (Assuming it is different than the passcode lock you seemed to mentioned)

    Thank you kindly! Sorry I think my tone is a little direct! I just don't want to waste people's time to help me on this forum! I appreciate it.

    Thank you thank you.


    Thank you for your response!! Thanks for taking the time to respond.
    I hear you.
    Charge it up. Ok, I can do that.
    Now, you say "Wipe it."
    It has never been turned on.
    Wipe "find my phone."
    Again, never turned on.

    There's no reason for me to even check that stuff, right?

    (I think the answer is a resounding NO but I may not know something.)

    Thank you again.
  7. Kealohilani macrumors 6502

    Sep 16, 2012
    I will also be selling my 5s and currently have listings on swappa and craigslist. Maybe you all can answer a question for me since the only iPhone I have sold was sold to Nextworth. I understand to reset my phone and remove find my iphone from it. Is there anything else I would need to do to make sure that the buyer can activate it with no problems? Is it safe to reset it to factory or would they have problem with any kind of activation lock? Sorry I am letting my ignorance show, I just want to make sure any buyer I get will have full use of the phone without getting all of my personal information.
  8. EDH667 macrumors 6502a


    Nov 25, 2009
    Northern California
    What I do when I sell an iPhone is do an "Erase All contents and Settings". I then use an old SIM that is no longer activated to get past the activation screen (works for my AT&T phones). I set up as a new phone do not add a passcode or iTunes account. The buyer is now able to view the phone in a working mode and can enter his or her account and see there is no activation lock.


    Yes, you have to let them inspect the phone before cash changes hands. When I purchase an iPhone on CL I like to "Erase All Content and Settings" if it hasn't been done, insert a working SIM card, and sign into my iCloud and iTunes accounts. At that point after I have inspected the iPhone and signed into the accounts, I will give the seller the cash. If the seller doesn't agree to that, I walk away!
  9. Newtons Apple macrumors Core

    Newtons Apple

    Mar 12, 2014
    Jacksonville, Florida
    I would go Craigs list. I have over 700 good sales and purchases at eBay but for someone who knows nothing about eBay and you have no feedback, it can be a dangerous place to be in.

    Aftyer reading some of the other answers here, I do not blame you for being confused.
  10. iCore24, Aug 20, 2014
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2014

    iCore24 macrumors 6502


    Jan 6, 2013
    Here is my listing I sold on eBay 2 days ago.

    I make sure when they pay that I check the Paypal transaction. See if the Shipping Address and Payment method both are verified! State that in the selling description (I forgot) so they can't complain why you deny them.

    Also list it buyitnow at the highest price the phone sold for on eBay in 2 weeks. I would say around $750-$800 if you have the box and chargers, and if unlocked. They take a total of 12.9% So if sold for $800, you'll receive $697.40.
    Make sure to check the must pay immediate button under where you insert a price for your item. But I think you have to have more feedback to enable that.

    Just take loads of pics,

    example listing.

    Brand New (other) for condition.

    Brand NEW iPhone, Got it replaced straight from Apple.
    Comes with (insert stuff...)
    Has warranty until...(Go to and check)

    you get the idea. Honestly I feel more comfortable selling on eBay then meeting strangers who might rob me or worse.
  11. Dansrom thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 13, 2014
    Thanks for the tips!!
    Should I list the Serial number from the back of the phone right in the ebay description itself?

    My fear is that even though I say NO REFUNDS that the buyer can still refuse the item, and that would lead me to think they will tamper with the phone and make it defective.

    Thanks for your tips!
  12. EDH667 macrumors 6502a


    Nov 25, 2009
    Northern California
    Don't list the serial number or IMEI on any ad or eBay listing.

    You may also want to look at Only $10.00 and PayPal 3%. Less commission and your lack of seller rating on eBay won't hurt you. There seems to be less scammers on Swappa since they verify IMEI numbers prior to listing.
  13. 1981d macrumors 6502

    Sep 24, 2013
    There are lots of eBay horror stories in these forums. No matter how careful you are, they can claim "item not as described" and mail you a brick back. Then they have your phone and your money. As far as I know, there is no defense against that scam. You could always sell it to GameStop for instant cash, but you'll only get about $300.
  14. Dansrom thread starter macrumors newbie

    Aug 13, 2014
    I apologize as there is confusion. I actually have over 900 positive feedbacks on eBay. I am not new to eBay itself, I am just new to selling an iPhone on eBay. Thank you very much for your continued advice.
  15. iCore24 macrumors 6502


    Jan 6, 2013
    Damn dude! Then what you worry about? Just follow our tips and you'll be fine!
  16. marshallbedsaul macrumors 6502a


    Nov 14, 2007
    I've done this several times, and prefer to meet at my carriers store. This helps insure safety, public meeting, and peace of mind for the buyer to verify phone esn/meid is clear.

    eBay sales are ok, but I've been burned. You can never stop last minute or dishonest buyers.
    If eBay insurance is a must/ certified mail and or signature confirmation.

Share This Page