If You're Upgrading, When Do You Sell Your Old Gear?

How many of you have already promised $600 to the Jobs'ter to get your new shiny white iPad 2 on March 11? While many pre-orderers might be grabbing a tablet for the first time, we're sure plenty of you are making the choice to upgrade from the first generation iPad. Now you're left with the conundrum of every early upgrader: When should I sell the old one?
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Since the whole tablet computing movement still seems fresh to consumers, we're sure you can get a decent pay back from selling that first gen iPad. The same goes for your barely-old phones, computers and cameras.

Making the choice to sell your last-gen gear is easy. Deciding when to do it is the tough part:

  • Before you order the new one. This makes the most fiscal sense. Get cash for your old gear and use the spare money to help pay for the upgrade. But this also leaves you with two problems: First, you're left without your tech in the meantime (you could live without an iPad for a month, but probably not without a cell phone). Second, you better be damn sure you can get your hands on that upgraded model. Without having yet made the order or plunked down the cash, you could be in high waters if the demand is so great that your shiny upgrade sells out.
  • Before the new one arrives. Maybe you're counting on cash from your iPad to help pay for the iPad 2, but you can afford to have your dough tied up for a bit. Put down the cash to pre-order the new one to get a guarantee that you'll have a new device at your door, then sell the old one to recoup some of the expense.
  • After the new one arrives. This is the method we always take. Being paranoid of new gear that either doesn't ship on time or ships defective, we'd rather be sure we have our next-gen piece before the old one leaves our fingertips. Of course, this means cash gets tied up for quite awhile and—probably the worst downfall of this plan—your old gear may become less desirable as soon as the new tech hits the streets.


How long (or little) do you wait to sell off last year's model? Do you have any tips and techniques for getting the most out of a re-sale? Let us know in the comments!



(Images: Flickr member natebeaty licensed for use under Creative Commons, iPad-site.net)

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Taryn is a writer, maker, and designer based in Atlanta, and editor of lifestyle blog Formal Fringe. She loves her fiance, her dog Bacon, and collecting beer koozies when she travels.

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