Reselling Televisions – how I started and 10 tips on selling used TVs

Reselling Televisions – how I started and 10 tips on selling used TVs

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New blog – Hi all. Today I’m going to write about reselling televisions. Regular Money Mental readers will know that I’ve recently moved into reselling as part of my plans to form the ‘Money Mental Business Empire’. For more details about this, you can read my previous blog on my reselling journey by clicking here. For those who aren’t sure what reselling is basically it involves buying something and then selling it on (i.e. ‘reselling’ it) for a profit. I’m new to this concept but it’s working really well for me and I’m already averaging over £500 a week in sales despite having only been doing this for a few weeks. It does take a lot (and I mean a lot) of hard work though so don’t think it’s easy money by any means!

Anyway, back to the point of today’s blog, One of the most profitable areas that I’ve discovered for resale turns out to be buying and selling (known as reselling or flipping) televisions. I can make anything from £20 to £80 on a single sale and even better they’re really quick sellers! It’s actually a market I entered almost by accident. A while back I sold my old TV privately through Facebook. To me, the TV was practically worthless. Although it was a big HD TV with Freeview built in it wasn’t a smart TV, didn’t have 4k and was absolutely massive! I found the picture quality to be poor on it when compared to more modern TV sets and was convinced that everyone else would feel the same. However, on a whim, I listed it on the facebook marketplace for £100 and was staggered by the amount of interest I got at what I thought was a ridiculous price (I’d have been happy getting £30 for it). The TV set had only cost me £300 when it was new so I was delighted with the return on it.

This stayed in the back of my mind for a while and so when I started reselling I would often put in cheeky 99p bids on TV sets thinking full well that they wouldn’t succeed. However one did for some reason unknown to me and I was suddenly the proud owner of a Toshiba 22 inch widescreen television with remote and Freeview. I turned up, handed over a £1 to the seller, took the TV home and listed it on facebook marketplace for £30. It sold within 15 minutes!

With the £30 I bought another couple of televisions from eBay which I sold for a bit more £35 and £55 respectively and so suddenly my career as a television salesman was born! I’m now selling 2-3 a week. The only thing that stops me from selling more is having the storage for TVs and the time to test them, photograph them and write descriptions. However, I do intend to correct this!

So that’s how I became a television reseller. Selling televisions over the last few weeks has taught me a few things which I’d like to share as a series of tips so read on to find out more!

Top ten tips for reselling/flipping TVs:

  1. The easiest place to sell televisions is locally via the Facebook Marketplace and local facebook selling groups. Packaging televisions for resale and selling them via eBay is a difficult job and the postage costs can be quite high so I sell mine purely through facebook. Another problem with selling via eBay (through a business account like mine) is that as it’s an electrical product should someone electrocute themselves on it they can sue you. So you need the appropriate insurance in place to protect you. However, if you are selling something privately through something like the facebook marketplace as a private sale then the onus is on the purchaser to confirm that the item is safe for use, So it’s a lot harder for them to sue you!
  2. If you’re selling a flatscreen television then it’s a lot easier to sell it if it’s got Freeview built in. You can also command a higher price for sets with Freeview in. That being said it’s still perfectly possible to sell televisions that don’t have Freeview built in. I’ve sold a couple now but they have taken longer to sell.
  3. You can write the best description in the world but people still won’t read it properly! So get used to people asking you if the television you’re selling has Freeview built in and has a remote control with it even though you’ve specified in both the description and the listing title whether it does or doesn’t! So prepare for lots of questions like this and don’t get frustrated by them. 9 times out 10 I sell to someone who didn’t read the description properly.
  4. Conversely, if you’re buying televisions to sell on always get the model number of the television from the seller. I’ve quite often purchased televisions for a low price because the seller doesn’t realise it has Freeview built in (they’re used to watching sky through the TV you see). A quick search on google for that model number TV will tell you what the specs of it are.
  5. Buyers love remote controls. The second most frequent question I get asked after ‘does it have Freeview’ is ‘does it have the remote’? For that reason, I always make sure any television I sell has the remote control with it. If I’m buying a television to sell on I’ll only pay a maximum of £15 (for a big one) or £5 for a smaller one if it doesn’t have the remote control with it as sourcing the right remote control for the TV usually costs an extra £15. So try and stay away from anything that doesn’t have a remote with it if you want high-profit quick turnaround sales.
  6. The biggest profit lies in selling flatscreen LCD or plasma screens. But there’s still profit to be had in buying the old style CRT big back televisions believe it or not! The reason for this is simple. Many retro games consoles and their accessories (think old Sega or Nintendo consoles) won’t work with modern flatscreens. So retro gamers are prepared to pay to buy the old televisions (usually about £20-£30). Even better these old-style televisions regularly pop up for free on sites like Freegle, freecycle and the facebook marketplace as people think they have no value and they take up a lot of space. So if you’re looking to get into TV reselling but don’t have any spare cash this can be a good way to do it. Although I would say that the best marketplace for selling these on is actually eBay (with the appropriate keywords such as retro gaming in your listing title).
  7. Televisions take up room. And the best way to get a sale is to show pictures of it working. So make sure you have an area set up where you can store your television but also take pictures with the TV plugged in and working. If it doesn’t have fFreeviewbuilt in and you don’t have a Freeview box then hooking the TV up to a DVD player and showing photos of it playing a DVD works just as well as having it showing television programmes.
  8. eBay and the facebook marketplace are great places to source TVs. Have a look at the auctions on eBay and use an eBay sniper tool like gixen to manage your bids for you. It’s also worth looking at the buy it nows on eBay as sometimes the odd television pops up that’s priced low. On facebook ,there’s a lot of TVs listed on a daily basis that have really poor pictures and descriptions and so don’t sell. Look out for these as often a cheeky offer on something that’s been listed on the marketplace for a while will succeed. Freecycle and freegle are often also good but be aware that televisions tend to go within minutes of being posted on these sites so you need to be quick or very lucky!
  9. Spares and repairs TVs with remotes are worth looking at but not for the reason you may think. Because of the way modern televisions are designed it’s usually not financially worthwhile fixing them as it requires access to technology that the average person doesn’t have or the components themselves can be quite expensive. However, there’s a big market for remote controls on eBay. So if there’s a TV being offered for free or on a 99p auction that includes it’s remote control then have a quick look on eBay to see how much the remote control is going for. Television remotes can go for anything from £10-£20 on eBay so it may be worth picking up the TV just for the remote. If you feel confident about stripping the television for parts then some of its internal parts may also have some value as well. But if you’re not then I would only pick up one if you’re confident you can make a healthy profit on the remote control that comes with it. You can always list the television itself on eBay for spares and repairs minus its remote control and someone may give you a few quid for it as well!
  10. Never sell a television that you’ve not tested yourself and always try to see one you buy in operation first. Quite often your buyer will have questions about how the television works and so to offer a good service you really need to know how to use it yourself! Otherwise, they may lose trust in you and decide to buy a television elsewhere. Testing the television will also help you identify any issues with it, such as whether it takes a few seconds for the TV to turn on or switch Freeview channels etc so that you can reassure your buyer that this is part of its normal operation. Vice versa if you’re buying one to sell on then you want to make sure that the previous owner can make you aware of any of these issues (design features I call them as they are part of the normal design but may appear to be issues on fthe irst inspection!) and they can talk you through the operation of the television.

So there you have it. I hope you find the above tips helpful and I wish you good luck in your reselling journey if this is something that interests you. In the meantime ,if you’re looking for a new television feel free to come and see me!

Thanks for reading and if you like what you’ve seen feel free to comment below and follow @moneymentaluk on twitter, instagram and youtube for more adventures!

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