How to buy a second hand mobile phone

second-hand phones and how to get the best deal:

Why would you buy a second-hand smartphone in the first place?

Today more then ever smartphone prices reach all-time records, and buying a new phone is a very expensive task. smartphone prices have reached the $1,500 and they are keeping going north.

As a result, more and more buyers are using the second-hand market, to get better results when coming to the cost-benefit equation.

The lifespan of the new devices is no more than 3 years, as more manufacturing companies build their business model on customers buying a new device every 2-year max. as a result of buying a new item that has a price increase of about 30%-45% every year demand a deferent method of keeping up with the pace of technology.

Going out there and searching for a second hand mobile phone become the best options for most users out there.

What happens to any smartphone older than 3 years?

first of all, there is the normal usage of the phone, this takes a heavy toll on a component that was meant to hold for up to 3 years. the reason for that is the fact that mobile phones are made thinner and thicker, leaving very little room for high-quality materials to be used.

Another big issue is the fact that the apps that come with the phone as a must, like google apps or apple apps getting bigger and bigger living your old mobile phone helpless. they make sure that you’ll feel it. even worse apple used to slow down old phones to create the “need” to upgrade.

But the biggest problem of all? the battery! you see battery die with time. if you’ll look closely you will find out that more and more mobile phone manufacturers create a device without a way to replace the battery. the reason for that? users will feel that effect immediately! as a result, they will be more frustrated with their mobile phone and be ready for an upgrade.

what else? scratches are annoying, and they cost a lot to fix. dents, and wear and tear make you mentally feel like it’s time for an upgrade.

And of course, the new phones are getting better and better. faster and faster. slick and beautiful. all that makes you look at your old phone with desperation.   

How to find a great deal?

So you decided that you want a second hand mobile phone. the first thing is to establish is:”how much”? we need to know how much is a good price.

here are some guidelines:

  • Find out how much the mobile phone cost as a new item. that will establish your max price.
  • Find out how old is the phone. the older the mobile phone the less it should cost.
  • Technology – this is very important. sometimes a device is old by means of technology, not use. what do I mean? you may see a brand new (unused item), only to find out that his hardware is outdated. making it almost useless. 
  •  Make sure you read the mobile phone you’re after review. to do that write the name with “review” in google. make sure you read professional reviews and not users review. they won’t be biased

Getting down to business:

 So you have a phone brand and model in mind? great now you need to pay attention to the following: 

  1.  who is the seller? is the seller a private person? does he has a “shop”? people with a shop. the ones that say: “warranty & receipt”, usually won’t negotiate. I believe in negotiation. why? because most commercial companies do not know to price perfectly. how do I know that? because almost all companies will have sales. what are sales? sales are the recognition that there are zero capabilities to price perfectly.
  2. what do you get? does the seller have the item in “new” packaging? if not is this a sign to be warry? i suggest that you don’t buy from a seller without good packaging. why? because mobile phones are stolen every day and you don’t want to be a statistic.
  3. A broken screen is not a bargain! if you don’t know how to fix this avoid the deal. it’s not easy to replace a screen. why? if it was the seller would have to do it himself.
  4.  Mobile phones lose value dramatically as time goes by. what do I mean? it means that after 1 year they lose 20%, after 2 years they lose 40% and after 3 years they lose almost all their value.  

How to conduct a check?

You won’t buy an old car without inspection right? then you shouldn’t do it with regard to mobile phones.

what do you need to do?

  •  check the overall look of the mobile phone. does it have scratches? dents? bloody screen? broken glass? side dents? or issues with the back of the device? broken glass is a deal breaker. dents can have some sort of long-term effects to the hard drive, and internal components. too many small stuff means a big problem down the road. 
  •  Bring a sim card & memory card and try them. you must be able to make calls and save files. 
  •  The display. just go to google and look at the screen. if there are black dots you will see them on the white background. black dots means dead pixels. make sure the colour is identical and not changing like a bloody screen. any problems with the screen are bad news. avoid the deal altogether. why? because it means a problem with the motherboard. and that is literally the end of this item.
  •  Does your Item charge? so many problems these days by charging a phone, it can be a problem later. make sure the item charge properly. if not ask yourself: can I fix it? if not avoid the mobile phone altogether. 
  • Make sure the phone can connect to a pc. bring a cable and a pc and see that you can transfer files. both ways!
  • Check the audio quality. is it good? is it a bit distorted? mobile phone speakers can burn out via excessive usage. so make sure they are fine. Make sure your earphone work as well. let’s face it this is important, so make sure it works.
  • How is the camera? rear and front. any scratches there will distort the end product. so make sure the pictures you take with is are clear and nice. if you need the camera, avoid buying a second hand mobile phone with bad lenses. it will cost you heaps to replace it.    
  • The best way to make sure you are covered is to use this app: Phone Doctor Plus – go via the checks one by one to make sure the mobile phone is good to go.
  •  Check IMEI – this is very important. the IMEI help companies to stop stolen phones. they will make a phone a brick if the owner will report the phone as stolen, and have kept the IMEI. do not, I repeat do not buy without checking it. you can do it here: IMEI Info


You must be sure before you transfer the money. the best option here would be that the second hand mobile phone still have manufacturer warranty. even 2-3 months will give you enough time to check the phone. Most manufacturer will give 2 years warranty. if you can’t have a warranty make sure you use this guide.  

And make sure you enjoy your buy…Good Luck.