How to turn your old tech into hard cash

The hunt for nostalgic technology – that perhaps reminds us of happy, carefree times in our childhoods – appears to be on...

The hunt for nostalgic technology – that perhaps reminds us of happy, carefree times in our childhoods – appears to be on the increase. - Credit: iStock/PA

All this extra time stuck at home has reignited the appeal of gadgets and gizmos from the ‘good, old days’, it seems, and the appeal of nostalgic technology is growing. 

Whether it’s VHS players so we can watch old tapes of family memories, or something to play classic vinyl records on, eBay has seen a revival in second-hand technology being bought and sold.

Your old VHS player may be worth more than you thought. 

Your old VHS player may be worth more than you thought. - Credit: iStock/PA

Some shoppers are also opting for vintage computers and accessories, perhaps partly due to parents showing their kids the games they used to enjoy.

Sales of second-hand computers have increased by 26 per cent on eBay UK in the past year, with an average selling price at £33, according to the website.

Popular tech changing hands right now includes ZX Spectrum games bundles and items relating to the Commodore 64.


You may also want to watch:


Sales of second-hand sound and vision items, such as VHS players, are up by a third (33 per cent), with items typically going for £37.

The retro tech revival could make you money. 

The retro tech revival could make you money. - Credit: iStock/PA

If you’re inspired to have a look in the cupboard and dust off your old tech to sell, it pays to be realistic about the price, as going too high may put some buyers off.

Most Read

eBay suggest searching for similar items on its website to make sure you’re going for the right price range. You can filter your search to only include sold items, to get an idea of how much you could realistically achieve.

Other selling tactics may also pay dividends, such as aiming for listings to end on Sunday evenings, when the website is often busy, or opting for longer 10-day auction listings so that more potential bidders get a chance to spot your items.

Also, try to take plenty of photos in natural light and describe any scratches or other defects. If you haven’t used your tech for a while, you may want to check whether it’s still in working order.

Emma Grant, head of preloved at eBay UK, says: “We’re witnessing a revival in retro tech, especially vintage computers and items such as VHS players and record players.

“We put this down to families using lockdown to take a trip down memory lane by watching old home videos and revisiting old records. People are also using the time to revamp their old PCs, or opting for a vintage computer as a sustainable and retro alternative to brand new.”

Emma Grant from eBay UK.

Emma Grant from eBay UK. - Credit: eBay UK/PA

Get your tech ready for resale with this checklist from eBay UK

1. Make sure you back-up any data stored on your device with a free online storage service.

2. Use the ‘factory reset’ on mobile devices to remove personal data and access to accounts.

3. Remove the SIM card and memory card, if there is a removable one.

4. If you have them, make sure you include the charger, power cable, instructions and accessories.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter