Sell Your Macbook for Cash
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Checklist to Follow Before Selling Your Macbook
How do I identify my MacBook model?
It’s important to get your MacBook model correct prior to selling it as prices between different MacBook models can very significantly.
Your MacBook model information can be found by doing the following:
- Choose “About This Mac” from the Apple () menu in the upper-left of your screen.
- You should now see some information about your laptop, including the model year.
If you couldn’t find your model information by following the above steps, we recommend following the steps above again and noting down your serial number. As an alternative, the serial number can be found on the back of the MacBook or on the original packaging. You can then visit the Apple Check Coverage website, log in with your Apple ID and input your serial number. The model information should appear on the page.
Another alternative is to paste the serial number on the EveryMac.com’s Ultimate Mac Lookup page.
What's the best way to sell a MacBook for cash?
It depends. There’s no one right answer. However, MacBooks hold their value very well and if you’re an experienced seller on eBay or Craigslist, you will likely get the highest value for your MacBook on those platforms. However, they do require more effort from the seller, charge fees, and come with the risk of fraud that novice sellers may not know how to protect themselves from.
For those customers, we recommend using a trade-in site such as SellMyLaptops. Trade-in websites leverage their volume discounts and industry know-how to provide a smooth streamlined experience; for a slightly lower payout.
Another alternative is to trade in your MacBook directly with your big-box retailers or with Apple. These typically offer the lowest payouts and often come in a form of a gift card.
Some older MacBooks especially non-functional ones, do not have much of a resale value and you can choose to recycle them. Recycling in an environmentally friendly manner helps keep toxic pollutants, such as lead, out of the environment. Keeping us all healthier and happier!
When's the best time to sell my MacBook?
The best time to sell your MacBook is usually as soon as you can. Trade-in prices for MacBooks rarely trend up so it’s best to prepare your MacBook for sale as soon as you’ve received your replacement and transferred over all your data.
If you’re looking to get the latest MacBook right when it’s released, the best time to trade-in or lock in an offer would be right before the announcement.
How should I prepare my MacBook for sale?
Apple has a very handy step-by-step guide on What to do before you sell or trade-in your Mac you can reference to ensure you’ve taken all the necessary steps to prepare your MacBook.
How To Reset Your MacBook Before Selling
Backup with Time Machine
The very first step to take is to backup your MacBook with Time Machine. This is really easy to do, and all you need is an external drive or an iCloud account. It will save all your information by backing up your info periodically on whatever drive you pick. You can gain access to your backed up files from your iCloud or external drive. And you can also use Migration Assistant to move your data and files into your new Mac.
Unpair Bluetooth Devices That Work With it
Your MacBook could be connected to an external Bluetooth device such as a mouse or keyboard that you want to keep with you. The best thing to do in this case is to unpair it. While this is optional, it is important because it can prevent accidental input from the new MacBook owners that are still within range.
To unpair a device from Bluetooth:
- go to your system preferences
- from the Apple Menu
- Click on the device you want to unpair
- remove it
The next step is to sign out of iCloud, iMessage, and iTunes and remove your passwords. All you have to do is go to the overview to find a sign-out. Depending on your operating system, it might be different but just look for the sign-out.
After signing out, you can go to your System Preferences and iCloud to check off Find my Mac. When you turn it off, you no longer need to worry about it attached to your iCloud. You have to make sure you sign out of everything, so you don’t have problems later. If you just reset the MacBook without clearing out it will be locked to your account and the buyer will not be able to use it.
Reformatting the Hard Drive
This will erase everything, so make sure that you are backed up and signed out of everything. Then you will erase everything and start from scratch.
To do this:
- Restart your computer.
- While it is rebooting: press Command+R
- right when you see the Apple logo
- It will take you to the Mac OS utilities.
This is where you erase your hard drive and choose Disk Utility, which is the last option. It is going to let you erase your disk and hard drive. You will lose everything using this option, so be very sure to have files backed up. Let this process complete before you can press Done after seeing the checkmark.
Reinstall Mac OS
Buying a new computer means you can choose a new OS or restore the one from the Time Machine backup. If you follow the first step of backing up with Time Machine, recovering your files on the new Mac will be easy.
Reinstalling the OS means you have to agree to the terms and conditions. After which, you will choose the disk-like Apple SSD that has already been formatted. Next, you will press install. This will take a little time because it is uploading directly from the internet.
Selling your MacBook may seem like a complicated process. But doing it right from the beginning will save you and your buyer time and work.