1. This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Repairing and flipping laptops on Ebay (Not so black hat)

Discussion in 'Ebay' started by Tmfw1416, Dec 5, 2011.

  1. Tmfw1416

    Tmfw1416 Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2011
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    3
    Back story:Im a 19 year old living with my single disabled mom about to start school, Im very mechanically inclined and am more of a hardware guy than I am a software guy. In essence I have more sense than I do cents and do have a side job where I get paid 70 bucks under the table for 2 hours worth of work.


    Last week I invested some of my money into a Gateway laptop model: mx6436 With the problem of "Not turning on, or getting power" for $40.25 + $15.00 Shipping so $55.25 Total in the hold so far. I recived the laptop today in pretty much the condition described not beat up all the keys are there but it does look like someone has had the back covers off before.I Opened it up to make sure Everything was there 80 gig Harddrive,512mb of ram,Nic, and of course the processor (AMD Sempron? 3300+ Processor 2.0 GHz ). I put the covers on and reseated the battery plugged it in and of course ..Nothing, Ok so maybe this isn't going to be the stupid easy fix, I then Tried another power cord (with the same voltage and adapter) With the same outcome.

    There is still some testing to do but I am 90% sure it is simply the adapter inside the laptop of going bad which is a Pain in the ass but a cheap fix if you know how to solder.

    Now this isn't a definite price nor profit but with the plug it should bring my Total up to 58.75 and im looking to flip it either back on ebay or craigslist for 100-150 Even with is being an older windows Xp era laptop I see worse go for the same price everyday on Craigslist.

    So heres the points of this money making Idea
    1.)Set a price that you want to spend with parts in mind Mine here was 60-65 Dollars

    2.)Only buy from sellers who describe the item well and have a higher feedback record I usually don't go under 95% but I will check them if they are lower to see if its the buyers or seller that doesn't understand how things should work.

    3.) Only buy Things in your comfort range In this instance I bought this laptop pretty much Thinking I was going to have to desolder and resolder the plug back on.

    4.) Don't give up If you fail to come out ahead on the first try learn from it, If you can't make your money back from selling it cancel the auction and part it out The screens go any where from 25-130 bucks.

    5.)Don't just use ebay, You can find ones on craigslist, Yardsales, Family members Im just using this one to get a little start up maybe get 2 laptops next time or a better one that I can fix refurbish and resell.

    6.)Research, I found out the exact specs to the laptop that the buyer didn't have listed.I asked him if everything was included harddrive and all he said that "to his knowledge" which sometimes can mean "No, But I don't want to come out and say it because then you won't buy it and if I say yes that would make me a liar and you want your money back" But I took the gamble and lucked out this time


    If anyone is really interested in this I may make a blog following my flipping and computer repair tips i've learned along the way.I have never worked at a computer repair shop and don't plan on ever working at a big chain of them (Really shitty work ethics and don't even do things right such as geeksquad The weather man is right more than they are) However I am going to school for it because its what I enjoy doing and im hoping that this ebay plan works out and helps give me some pocket money while I get threw this little rough spot in my life.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 2
    Last edited: Dec 5, 2011
  2. hitch

    hitch Regular Member

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2009
    Messages:
    217
    Likes Received:
    364
    This is a good idea, and a lot of people already buy and repair everything from laptops, cellphones torc cars, etc.

    The fundemental problem with this model as it will require a lot of TIME on your behalf. And that time is not cheap, as in you can't just outcourse it to some low skilled people to fix the problem.. unless you spend more time trainging them.. but then, the price of your repaired laptop will be worth more then $150 even with an origional buy price at $50.

    It's a good model, don't get me wrong.. to make a few extra bucks here and there but it will be hard to scale it up unless you partner up with a few people who have similar goals then going after corporate clients , not just buying and flipping online.
     
  3. goldstrike4u

    goldstrike4u Junior Member

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2007
    Messages:
    189
    Likes Received:
    124
    This is a good way to earn a few bucks, but is much harder than reading this forum and earning through internet marketing projects. However, if you do want to earn money from repairing ebay laptops my advice would be to wait for non technical people to advertise their machines that require a windows install.

    You'll be amazed at the amount of non-techies that think that their machine is dead (because their laptop along with charger, original disks and case won't boot), compared to the laptop that need repair because they have a faulty mainboard, and really are in need of attention. Buying wisely is everything here.
     
  4. Tmfw1416

    Tmfw1416 Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2011
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    3
    Yeah that's why I reseated the battery and tried 2 chargers lol.
     
  5. digibing

    digibing Junior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 18, 2010
    Messages:
    150
    Likes Received:
    28
    Good info. I have also been repairing and flipping laptops. It is not that profitable, but it's a hobby and a source of beer money. Here is some of the stuff I have learnt.

    1. Small footprint desktop computers, like the Dell Optiplex series, cost about the same to ship as laptops. If you search Ebay for "optiplex" and "lot" you will often find them in bulk.

    2. Go for the top quality brands that fetch nice money even when they are old. Thinkpad's, Vaio's and the Optiplex's (optiplexi?) for example are nicer to work with than old Acer's or Packard Bell.

    3. Try to take it to the next level. Medium sized companies don't always have a plan for disposing of old computers, and they sometimes just pile them up. Contact loads of those companies and ask them to give/sell their own computers. Better to buy in bulk for 10 dollars per piece instead of Ebay at 50 dollars.

    4. When buying on Ebay, watch out for other refurbishers. If they haven't been able to repair a certain laptop, it probably isn't worth the money and the effort to attempt it yourself.
     
    • Thanks Thanks x 1
  6. Tmfw1416

    Tmfw1416 Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2011
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    3
    Thanks for the advice seems solid but im going to get a job doing some kind of repairs after school I am just not a fan of the bigger repair shops who knows I might even open up a small one of my own. I do a lot of computer and metal recycling from time to time I try to go garbage picking atleast once a week and I plan on possibly doing some goodwill ebay hunting meaning i'll find something that I know I can sell for more and list it not necessarily electronic or computer related
     
  7. Tmfw1416

    Tmfw1416 Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2011
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    3
    Yeah number 4 is one I deff forgot to include but I've been contacting some liquidation companies and keeping my eye out for businesses that are going out out of business
     
  8. DSMPowah!

    DSMPowah! Guest

    Ah, this brings me back to my past haha.

    I was running a pretty damn successful Xbox 360/PS3 modding and repairing service, online and locally, as well as a computer repair business, and did the same thing with gaming systems and computers alike and made tons of money. But, there's not much cash in it anymore..
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 6, 2011
  9. jerdude

    jerdude Junior Member Premium Member

    Joined:
    Feb 27, 2009
    Messages:
    116
    Likes Received:
    10
    Home Page:
    The profit margin isn't big... But you should always try and test it before making any decisions.
     
  10. XBLElec

    XBLElec Junior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 16, 2011
    Messages:
    177
    Likes Received:
    32
    For Americans in USA you should look @ government auctions. They sell hundreds of laptops/pcs for dirt cheap.
     
  11. UASEC

    UASEC Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 9, 2011
    Messages:
    15
    Likes Received:
    0
    I agree with this, a mate tried the same & found there was no money in this.:eek:
     
  12. deserte

    deserte Junior Member

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2011
    Messages:
    155
    Likes Received:
    93
    Location:
    here
    i think the problem is in the motherboard .....there is no profit in this laptop.
     
  13. HoNeYBiRD

    HoNeYBiRD Elite Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2009
    Messages:
    5,603
    Likes Received:
    6,945
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Ghosted
    he hasn't tried hard enough then or looked in the wrong places, there's definitely money in this, until you can buy low and sell high and have the needed skills/connections to fix what is broken, if you focus on buying damaged items

    you don't necessarily have to relist the items on ebay, you can sell it on local market (online/offline), there are national online marketplaces which are more popular than ebay if you take a country where's not English the native language, at least in my country there are 2 more popular than ebay, and it's a little country with 10M inhabitants total
     
  14. Dragn

    Dragn Regular Member

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2008
    Messages:
    329
    Likes Received:
    83
    im a computer tech from 9-5 and thought of this idea many times over.

    I've repaired hundreds of thousands of computers (pc and laptop) over the years, so i can easily get a +/- of what the repair will cost total from a simple description.

    I've also sold a CRAP TON of stuff on craigslist, computers included.

    with that said, I considered this "buy broke online, fix, sell." concept, and in my experience, the time it takes to get the item, get the replacement part(s), do the labor, and then try and sell it online is NOT worth it.

    1. the cost of broken laptops is brought up to almost NO value after fix and resell due to others doing the same type of thing

    2. I can hardly EVER sell a computer for more than 50 bucks if its not running core2 or equivalent processor. even then i get lowballed at 100-150 -all the time-
     
  15. Tmfw1416

    Tmfw1416 Newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 5, 2011
    Messages:
    13
    Likes Received:
    3
    As stated its most likely the DC adapter I haven't got the multimeter I need to test it because I've been doing a ton of Computer side work a stated in my post It cost 3 dollars for the adapter and it simply needs soldered on once the old one is desoldered
     
  16. darkeggx

    darkeggx Regular Member

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2011
    Messages:
    474
    Likes Received:
    49
    Location:
    10100
    Why dont you start your own computer reppair business? If you're gonna flip something, flip a car. You'll make much more on a sale.
     
  17. osmose01

    osmose01 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2009
    Messages:
    77
    Likes Received:
    5
    It a good idea , but like other said if it the mb you are screwed up .
    Hitch linked some interesting website in a post he made about legit ebay deal , there is a website in it named liquidation.com and many other were you cant get salvaged grade laptop for cheap or tools or wathever, you could use the part in those laptop or whatever to make a working one , same goes for desktop .
    I was actually thinking about doing that with macbook pro , ipad2 or some fancy high tech stuff that people enjoy buying overpriced.
    But as somebody said above , you have to consider the time spent , because time is money , money buy time.
    I was working in a repair shop and sometime it could take me a whole day to figure what wasnt working in a desktop to give you an idea , because you have to do some software test when you can to pinpoint the defectuous parts...
    I guess if you keep working on the same model and same brand , you will be good at pinpointing what not working , some laptop for exemple compaq cq56 got a large array of hardware that can fit in, i noticed as well that some website were selling laptop part that they took from working computer you could buy used laptop and sell part screen wathever , it another idea.
     
  18. Leonne

    Leonne Registered Member

    Joined:
    Oct 28, 2011
    Messages:
    84
    Likes Received:
    10
    Occupation:
    SEO guy
    Location:
    Starbucks
    I imagine it can work to some extent. I doubt it'll earn you a decent amount of money, but hey,it's worth a shot. If you fail, you'll learn something from the experience.

    Oh and yeah, buy only from people with higher ratings, especially with broken laptops and other devices like this.

    Also does it have to be just laptops? Are you good with fixing other things as well?
     
  19. Gold Mike

    Gold Mike Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jan 5, 2011
    Messages:
    66
    Likes Received:
    10
    Dude, do this and monetize the blog. If your info is useful and you can build the traffic, you'll make more money than flipping. You could monetize with ads from parts suppliers or whatever.
     
  20. bananaman5000

    bananaman5000 Regular Member

    Joined:
    Mar 5, 2010
    Messages:
    200
    Likes Received:
    130
    I know a guy who flips cars, he's a pretty good mechanic and can spot the difference between one that's FUBAR and one that just needs some work. Last sale he made around $800 from what I remember, it took him about a month to fix it up. I think flipping stuff can definitely work, you may just need to hire some workers to make the big bucks.