Selling your old gaming PC is a great way to free up space, make some extra cash, and pass your rig on to a new owner who will appreciate it. With new components coming out every year, yesterday’s top-of-the-line build can quickly become outdated. Taking the time to sell your gaming PC properly ensures you get the most money for your hardware.
In this comprehensive guide, we’ll cover everything you need to know about selling a used gaming desktop, from pricing and listing tips to the best platforms for moving your PC.
Why You Should Sell Your Old Gaming PC
There are a few key reasons why you may want to sell an old gaming desktop:
Recover some costs: PC gaming can be an expensive hobby. Selling your previous build allows you to recoup some of what you originally paid and put that cash toward your next upgrade.
Free up space: Large, bulky desktop towers take up a lot of room. Selling your old rig makes space for a new system or other uses.
Pass it on: Your gaming PC still has value and use to someone else, even if you‘ve upgraded. Find it a new home with an enthusiast who will appreciate it.
Parts value: Parting out a desktop can net you more money than selling it whole. Individual components like GPUs retain value.
Overall, selling an old gaming PC you no longer need makes practical and financial sense. You clear out clutter while getting cash back on expensive hardware.
How to Determine the Value of Your Gaming PC
Before listing your computer for sale, you need to determine a fair asking price. Follow these tips to properly value your gaming desktop:
Start with the basics: Note the make and model, processor, GPU, RAM, storage, etc. These core components largely determine value.
Use hardware tools: Sites like UserBenchmark allow you to lookup components and see average resale pricing.
Check completed eBay listings: eBay‘s advanced search filters are useful for finding closed/sold listings for the same make/model PC or individual parts. This shows real-world resale value.
Factor in age and wear: Older and heavily used PCs won‘t fetch as high of prices. Condition is key. Cosmetic damage also brings the price down.
Consider bundled items: If you‘re including peripherals, games, accessories, etc. factor this added value into the asking price.
Compare to current pricing: Check current retail pricing on new components to determine how much hardware has depreciated. This gives you a baseline.
Leave room to negotiate: Add about 10-20% to your asking price to leave room for buyers to negotiate discounts. You can then "split" the difference.
Using these valuation methods, you can realistically price your gaming PC for maximum resale value. Remember, pricing too high means it won‘t sell.
Parting Out vs. Selling Complete: Which Gets You More Money?
One decision you need to make when selling a used gaming desktop is whether to part it out and sell the components individually or list it as a complete, ready-to-use PC. Here are the pros and cons of each method:
- Certain components like GPUs, RAM, and storage drives retain their resale value well over time. You can maximize profit by unloading these individually.
- Parting out lets buyers purchase only the specific component they need for their own builds. This increases demand.
- Items likecases and power supplies have less resale value. Parting out avoids bundling these with high-value components.
- Parting out is time consuming. You have to individually test, price,list, ship each component.
- Leftover parts that don‘t sell can pile up. Cases, motherboards, and "junk" parts often go unsold.
- Requires DIY skills and knowledge. Safely removing delicate components can be difficult for some users.
Selling Complete PC
- Maximum convenience. Just price, list, and ship the full working PC in one go.
- Buyers appreciate a complete, pre-built system. This saves them the hassle of sourcing individual parts.
- Peripherals like keyboards, mice, and monitors can add value when bundled with a full PC.
- Typically earns less money overall compared to parting out. You can‘t maximize profit on key components.
- Requires carefully packing and shipping a larger, heavier, more fragile item. Risk of shipping damage.
- Niche cases or components can make the full PC a harder sell if buyers are looking for common parts.
In most cases, parting out does earn you significantly more money in the long run if you have the time and DIY abilities. But for convenience and minimizing hassles, selling a complete PC is preferable for some.
Where to Sell Your Gaming Computer
Once your gaming desktop is prepped and priced, it‘s time to list it for sale. Here are the best platforms to sell a used gaming PC:
eBay is the go-to marketplace for selling used electronics like gaming PCs. Some key tips for selling on eBay include:
- Take high-quality photos showing all angles and components. Clear, well-lit shots build buyer confidence.
- Write detailed, honest condition descriptions. Mention any scratches, dents, defects, etc.
- Factor in eBay selling fees when pricing items. They take about 10% of the final selling cost.
- Consider auction-style listings for in-demand components like GPUs. This taps into bidding wars.
- Package items very carefully for shipping! Electronics are easily damaged.
eBay is ideal because it has over 180 million active buyers searching for used computer parts and complete builds. Just take the time to create quality listings.
Facebook Marketplace has exploded in popularity for buying/selling locally. To sell your gaming PC:
- Facebook‘s buyer base leans toward casual users and gamers buying complete systems.
- Listings are free. No selling fees like eBay.
- You must handle local pickup and cash payment. No built-in shipping.
- Be sure to demonstrate systems working prior to exchanging payment. Scams are common!
FB Marketplace works best for bulky full builds buyers can pickup. Good for sellers wanting to avoid shipping hassles.
Selling on Craigslist is similar to Facebook Marketplace, but with a wider reach. Things to know:
- Flexible listing formats like eBay, but focused on local pickup of items.
- No fees, but you provide your own payment processing and delivery.
- Beware flakey buyers. Follow common sense precautions during pickup/payment.
- Pixelate or remove any visible serial numbers in photos to avoid theft.
Craigslist works well for selling used gaming PCs locally. Just use caution when coordinating payment and delivery.
This popular subreddit is dedicated to buyers and sellers of used PC hardware. To sell here:
- Carefully follow the posting formats and rules outlined for sellers.
- Use PayPal Goods and Services for payment protection. Avoid shady buyers.
- You handle individual shipping, or arrange local pickup if possible.
- Maintain your reputation. Scammers get banned.
r/Hardwareswap works best for offloading PC components vs. full builds. But you can find eager buyers if priced right.
Beyond the above, also consider:
- eBay Alternatives – Amazon, Newegg, Overclock.net, and CowBoom allow used electronics sales.
- Local Classifieds – Check apps like LetGo, OfferUp, and wallapop for additional local sale avenues.
- PC Repair Shops – Many local shops buy used parts and working systems for resale.
- Consignment Shops – Electronics consignment stores may purchase your used gaming gear.
Cast a wide net across multiple platforms and marketplaces to maximize interest and get the best resale price.
How to Safely Prep Your Gaming PC for Sale
Getting top dollar for your used gaming PC requires properly preparing it for sale. Here are some tips:
Clean it thoroughly – Dust out the case, wipe down surfaces, make it shine appeal to buyers.
Inspect for damage – Check for any cracked screen, dented case or other defects you need to disclose to buyers.
Test all components – Fully power up the PC and make sure all parts are functional. Fix any issues.
Back up data – Remove or wipe all personal files and data from hard drives and SSDs to protect your privacy and security.
Reset to factory settings – Restore the operating system to like-new defaults to avoid any activation issues for the new owner.
Photograph serial numbers – Catalog all serials in case you need to report stolen gear. Then mask serials in listing photos.
Original manuals and discs – Include any original manuals, warranty cards, discs and accessories if possible for added value.
Secure components – Properly pack internal components like GPUs to avoid socket/slot damage in shipping.
Taking these steps ensures your gaming computer is ready for inspection and powering up by interested buyers. Protect your data, and prevent any shipping damage too.
Pricing Tips to Maximize Your Sale Value
When it comes to pricing your gaming PC, setting the amount too high means it will never sell. But price too low and you lose out on cash. Use these tips to optimize your asking price:
Research eBay Sold Listings
eBay‘s advanced search filters let you see the final selling prices of completed/sold listings for the exact make and model gaming rig you‘re selling. This gives you real-world pricing data to gauge value.
Part Out Valuable Components
Price those valuable GPUs, RAM kits, and solid state drives individually. Parting out earns more than bundling them into a full build selling at a discount.
Consider All Included Accessories
That fancy gaming keyboard or unopened box of games can add extra value on top of the PC. Factor this into your pricing.
Offer Bundle Deals
Sweeten the pot by bundling together PC components that are slow sellers individually. This entices buyers.
Note any exceptional qualities like limited use, upgraded parts, or mint condition. Buyers pay a premium for nicely maintained rigs.
See what competing sellers are listing similar gaming desktops and components for. Align your price accordingly.
Leave Room to Negotiate
Pad your listing price by about 10% higher than your minimum acceptable amount. This leaves room for haggling.
Set fair, competitive prices and you‘ll sell your gear quickly while getting what it‘s worth!
Safe Shipping Tips for Gaming Computers and Components
Shipping a fully assembled gaming tower or loose hardware components comes with risks. Use these tips to prevent damage during shipment:
Original manufacturer boxes – The best way to ship parts like GPUs. When unavailable, get creative with packing materials.
Anti-static bags – Essential for protecting sensitive components like motherboards and drives from static electricity damage.
Bubble wrap – Wrap all around parts and interior case walls for padding and vibration dampening.
Foam inserts/filler – Fill empty spaces in the case and component boxes to immobilize parts.
Secure parts – Use zip ties or mounting hardware to secure things like GPUs and CPU coolers to prevent movement.
Double box – When shipping a full tower, put it in a snug fitting box then pack that within a larger outer box.
Insurance – Insure expensive shipments, especially full PC builds. This covers value if damage does occur.
Signature Tracking – Require a recipient signature, don‘t leave packages unattended. Prevents theft.
Careful tape job – Don‘t overdo it! Too much tape or pulling too tight can damage panels and parts.
Proper packaging is just as important as pricing when it comes to getting your maximum resale value. Preventing shipping damage means more money in your pocket.
How to Handle Payment Securely
Once you‘ve priced, listed, and shipped your gaming PC successfully, finish up the sale smoothly and securely with proper payment handling:
Avoid direct bank transfers – Never provide your account/routing number for direct payments. Too risky!
Prefer electronic payments – Apps like PayPal Goods and Services, Venmo, Zelle, etc allow secure transfers while protecting both parties.
Meet in public – For local cash sales, pick a safe public spot like a bank lobby or police station parking lot.
Avoid overpayment scams – Be wary of any "buyer" offering to overpay then asking for a refund of the overage amount. It‘s a scam!
No gift cards – Never accept payment via gift cards. These transactions can be clawed back after the fact.
Wait for payment to fully clear – With checks or bank transfers don‘t ship until the funds fully clear and post to your account, usually within a few business days.
Review payment policies – Before using apps like PayPal or Venmo for transactions, read up on their rules and protections for sellers.
As a seller, it‘s up to you to ensure you receive full legitimate payment. Going that extra mile provides peace of mind with your gaming PC sale.
Final Tips for Selling Your Gaming Desktop
Follow this complete guide and you‘ll be ready to sell your old gaming rig for maximum cash. Just a few final tips to recap:
Photograph every step of disassembly and component condition if parting out. This protects you from complaints or false returns.
Be upfront about any damage, defects, or missing parts. Honesty is key for avoiding issues down the road.
Back up your data and factory reset your PC to protect personal info before selling.
Respond to buyer questions promptly and honestly. Good communication builds trust.
Package components and complete PCs very carefully like fragile china to prevent shipping damage.
Be flexible on pricing whenever reasonable to keep interested buyers engaged. Some money is better than no money!
And lastly, don‘t fret too much about selling your outdated gaming rig. There are new awesome PCs on the horizon to start drooling over!
Selling a used gaming desktop doesn‘t have to be a tedious chore. Price fairly, pick the right marketplace, and take the proper precautions during shipment and payment. Then sit back and enjoy your PC-upgrade funding!