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Is Buying a Refurbished Phone Worth It?

It is no news that today’s most popular mobile phones come with expensive price tags. And for the majority of consumers, they might be well outside their budget.

Fortunately, there is a way around this. You can choose a refurbished phone instead of a new one to help bring down the cost of the purchase to a large extent.

However, the question often comes down to whether it is a good idea to invest in a refurbished phone. To answer your questions, we have prepared a small guide on the pros and cons of buying a refurbished phone.

What is a Refurbished Phone?

In simple terms, a refurbished phone is a pre-owned mobile set that has been restored to good working condition.

That said, people often assume that all refurbished phones were once faulty. In reality, that isn’t necessarily the case.

Some retailers classify refurbished phones as those that were returned by customers after the initial 30-day period. This means that there is a chance that you buy a phone that is perfectly new – but at a reduced rate.

Moreover, before listing them, retailers thoroughly check all phones to make sure they are in working order. In other words, buying a refurbished phone is indeed worth it – given that you choose the right retailer.

Therefore, you should do some research to make sure that you find reliable retailers to buy refurbished phones. So, if you are a student or a professional with urgent deadlines to meet – we suggest you delegate them to set aside some time for research. What I usually do is set up a request to write my paper for me on WritePaper, and by the time the right retailer is found, the paper is ready. All you that’s left to do is pick it up.

Now, with that taken care of – let us get into the details of how to buy a refurbished phone.

What to Consider When Buying a Refurbished phone?

Finding the retailer is only one part of getting a good deal on a refurbished phone. On top of this, there are a few other considerations that you should take into account.

Find the Grade of the Phone

All the best phone resellers follow a grading system that reflects the condition of the phone. However, bear in mind that there is no universally applied grading system. Therefore, it would be best to check with the provider before purchasing.

Generally, the grades range from A to D:

  • Grade A: This refers to phones that are returned within 30 days of purchasing. In most cases, you are likely to receive a phone in top-notch condition except for some signs of wear.
  • Grade B: This often comes with a scratch that is visible but not too prominent.
  • Grade C: These phones are likely to have notable wear and tear and will look used.
  • Grade D: Such phones are considered to be flawed beyond repair. So, these units are meant to be used for parts.

Not every retailer follows the same grading system. Usually, each reseller will have a guide that you can follow to find out how the phones are classified. If not, it would be best to contact the seller directly or shop elsewhere.

What About Warranty?

Now, this is a tricky part. Whether or not you get a warranty on refurbished phones will depend solely on where you buy them from. For instance, there are credible providers such as Apple that sell only certified refurbished products. These come with a one-year warranty, just like the new ones.

On the other hand, if you are purchasing refurbished phones from an individual, then there is no guarantee that you will get any warranty at all.

Does the Phone Come with Accessories?

This, once again, will depend on the seller of the refurbished phone. Most phones these days do not come with a charger or headphones. You will have to purchase them separately. The only thing you can expect is the cable.

The majority of providers list details of what is included with the phone. As we mentioned above, Apple’s refurbished products come in a brand new box, with all manuals, accessories, and a new battery. This won’t be the case when you order from a third-party provider.

To begin with, the phone is likely to not be packed in the original packaging issued by the manufacturer. So, you will want to check with the website to find out what accessories are offered.

Used vs. Refurbished

It is crucial to understand that not all second-hand phones are refurbished. A retailer could be simply reselling a used phone, but that does not mean that it will be in good working condition.

Similarly, used phones that are not refurbished might not come with a warranty. In most cases, a used phone is likely to perform worse than a refurbished counterpart.

Unlocked vs. Locked

You should also consider whether a refurbished phone comes locked to a specific network. This means that you might have to change your phone network provider.

It is always best to opt for an unlocked model that allows you to use any SIM card.

Battery Life

There are only a few refurbished phone sellers that add a new battery to a phone. After all, this would increase the cost of refurbishment and the final price tag of the phone.

In most cases, phone retailers look for phones that have a minimum of 80% battery life. A phone with a battery capacity of 80% or above is considered to be in optimum condition.

Returns Policy 

Not only new phones but even the best refurbished mobile handsets also come with a return policy. After all, there is a chance that you might not like the appearance of a phone after you get it.

Therefore, if you are in doubt, it would be smart to choose a provider that accepts returns. The period for return changes between 21 and 30, depending on the provider.

Check Customer Reviews

When choosing a refurbished phone retailer, the best way to analyze a website’s reputation would be to check user reviews. And by this, we mean the ones on third-party platforms such as TrustPilot. These are often genuine reviews written by customers with first-hand experience.

You can check forums to find out what other consumers have to say about the service and products.

Should You Buy a Refurbished Phone?

If you purchase a refurbished phone from a trust-worthy reseller, there will be no risks at all. Depending on the grade you choose, there might be some minor wear. Other than that, most refurbished phones come with new replacement parts.

In fact, those phones that have been repaired to a perfectly good condition are only marginally cheaper. If the phone is available at a much lower price, you might want to think of why they are selling at a low cost.

The risk comes when you buy from an unreliable provider. Therefore, make sure you thoroughly investigate a platform to find out how the phones are graded and what tests they are doing to ensure quality. If you find a good retailer, then choosing a refurbished phone would do good not only for your wallet but also for the environment.


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