UPDATE: Make that 12 sites. (When I find more sites, I’ll add them.)
Beyond digging for deals and finding the lowest price, there is another way to fund your next electronic purchase without opening up that wallet.
Several companies will pay you money for your old computer, iPod or other gadget. Some pay cash, others gift cards. Another company lets you lock in how much money you can get for a gadget after six months to two years of use.
As you may or may not know, such recycling efforts are part of the whole green tech trend. In California, it’s been illegal to dump a monitor or computer into the trash can for years. More recently, consumers here pay an ‘e-recycling’ fee when buying a new monitor, PC or other device with a screen.
While many computer sites now offer free recycling, I’ve honed in on the sites that give you a little something extra for your junk. Pretty much all offer free shipping — you just print out a label on your computer and ship the gadget.
Using my old 40 GB iPod Photo (in good condition, with minor scratches) as an example, here’s what I can get for it (from high to low):
$60 = Toshiba America - Uses eztradein.com to run its program. Gives gift cards and cash for old electronics. Read my past story on the program, “Toshiba’s PC recycling program now accepts all e-junk.”
$60 = BestBuy.com uses the same service as Toshiba. But instead of cash, you’ll get a gift card to Best Buy.
$60 = PayPal.com uses the same service as Toshiba. Pays with PayPal credit.
$56.70 = Amazon.com uses several companies including Gazelle (mentioned below). All pay with Amazon gift cards. In this case, NextWorth accepts old iPods and iPhones. Using FlipSwap.com, my iPod got me $35.29 in Amazon gift cards.
$56 = Costco.com uses GreenSight Technologies for its recycling program. Program pays in Costco gift cards.