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How to Resell Cameras & Gear: Profits in a Flash

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Do you have some old cameras you’re thinking of parting ways with? Or maybe, you love photography and want to start a resale business around it? Either way, it’s a booming industry that benefits both the buyer and the seller.

Read along to learn how to resell camera gear. There are many options for selling and some key things you’ll want to know to ensure you’re making the most out of your sales. 

Is it Possible to Resell Cameras?

Yes! There is a huge market for used camera gear. The price to start pursuing the hobby can be relatively low, so many people pick it up and move their way up by buying used gear. 

header image for resell camera gear post on gigworker.com

Most videographers producing amateur content start with cheap cameras for YouTube but move onto more expensive gear over time to produce 4K content. This makes the camera equipment marketplace quite active for buying and selling. People love trying new photography equipment! 

The camera marketplace consists of much more than just the camera body. People buy additional parts like lenses, video equipment, carry bags, memory cards, and accessories.  

What Kinds of Cameras Sell Well?

Used camera gear can be worth thousands or pennies. You’ll want to know what type of camera equipment is in demand before you start selling gear.

Among the best items to resell are:

  • Antique cameras
  • Film cameras 
  • Camera bodies 
  • Video gear
  • Lenses
  • Nikon cameras

Mid-range cameras sell well, as they have the highest demand in the market for both hobby and semi-professional photographers.  

What is the Value of Cameras?

The value of cameras varies from less than $100 to thousands of dollars. The quality of the gear varies, so some used equipment in your gear collection could prove more valuable than others.

Do Cameras Lose Value Over Time?

Most cameras will lose value over time because the technology evolves rapidly. Older cameras can’t keep up with the fancy new technology that comes out every few months, quickly decreasing their value. 

The exception to this is vintage and antique cameras. Old film cameras are now worth significantly more than they ever were. Investing in these may gain value over time if they are well maintained. 

As for contemporary professional cameras, Nikon, Sony, and Canon are the brands that will maintain their value the best. 

Things to Consider When Reselling Cameras

With so many brands, places to sell, and approaches to selling, you’ll want to have your selling strategy solidified. Keep in mind some important things when you start to sell. 

1. Wholesale Versus Single Items

While most resellers will be selling single items out of their own collection, you do have the option to buy camera items in bulk and sell individually for retail prices. Certain platforms will be better than others for this. 

It will take more investment upfront, but it’ll decrease the time and energy to market individual items and parts. 

2. Sell to Consumer or Store

You have the option to choose whether you want to sell directly to consumers, on platforms like eBay or Facebook marketplace, or go through stores that will buy your equipment from you to sell themselves. 

Selling directly to consumers can make you more money, but does take additional time and effort. But, you’ll also have more flexibility on what you sell and how much you sell it for. 

On the other hand, stores may give you a store credit that would be worth more than cash from retail buyers. They also make reselling an easier process, as you won’t need to do the marketing to reach the buyer yourself. 

3. Honesty is Key

You’ll avoid problems by being honest in the beginning about the quality of the camera gear. Buying expensive gear can feel risky, so you’ll want to reassure your buyer of the quality and condition of the gear.

4. Timing

When selling anything, there is usually a prime time to sell in the market. With cameras, that’s as soon as possible. 

Since they do lose value over time (except for rare cameras), you’ll want to list as soon as you can to get the highest price. Newer cameras are coming out quicker than ever, making older equipment feel outdated quickly. 

5. Write Strong Descriptions and Listings 

It’s essential in any listing to provide as much information as possible for the buyer. They want to know everything possible, in a very clear way. 

One way to do this is to take your own photos of the gear to show the buyer. Having the original box, instruction manual, and warranty cards will also help to maintain the value. It can also help to include a photo with your business name and the date in the photos to verify yourself as a legitimate seller.

Where to Resell Cameras

For selling camera gear, you’ll need to decide whether you want to do it online or in person. For both options, you have: 

1. eBay

A screenshot of the ebay homepage

Reselling on eBay is one of the most trusted ways to buy or sell, and that’s no different for camera gear. You can list it at a fixed price or put it up for auction, but you have full control over the price, unlike other sites. 

It’s easy to sell one-off items on eBay, while other methods require you to have multiple of the same items to list. 

What Makes This Option Great

Some other camera-specific sites are picky about what they’ll sell but there is no restriction on Ebay. You can sell older, less demanded camera equipment and often still get a sale. 

eBay is incredibly popular as a platform, so when you list here, you can widen your net for potential buyers.    

Fees/Commission: 10-15.5% of final sale price. Additional optional fees to boost listing. Shipping, if not included.  

Payment Methods: Direct deposit or PayPal. 

2. KEH

screenshot of the keh homepage

KEH is an online marketplace for buyers and sellers to trade camera gear. 

You’ll get free quotes from an expert you show the gear to. This can help if you’re new to reselling cameras and help you price your gear correctly so you’re not losing money but still maximizing your sales.

Once you have a valuation you are happy with, KEH will send you a shipping label that gives you free tracked shipping to their headquarters. Send it off to them. 

In the case that the value should be lower when they see it in person, they’ll contact you. If it’s higher or the same as your initial valuation, then they will pay you immediately.  

What Makes This Option Great

KEH is known to give fair market prices for the gear. It’s a quick and easy way to sell the gear without having to track down buyers yourself. 

Fees/Commission: None, but they may offer you less money than if you went directly to a consumer. 

Payment Methods: Direct deposit or PayPal. 

3. Amazon

a screenshot of the Amazon Seller homepage

If you’re looking to buy bulk items for a wholesale price and then sell them, reselling them on Amazon will be your best option. 

You’ll need to register as an Amazon seller and follow their policies to build your business. 

What Makes This Option Great

It’s great if you can manage the scalability of it. Camera equipment is typically an expensive upfront cost. Growing an Amazon store is a fantastic way to create revenue that runs itself with little effort after the initial push. 

Fees/Commission: $0.99 per item sold on an individual plan. 

Payment Methods: Direct deposit.

Local Photography Stores 

Look around if you have a used camera store near you to sell locally. 

Camera stores will buy used camera equipment from people and give you cash or credit. They then list this item in their store at a higher retail price.  

What Makes This Option Great

If you’re just hoping to put your money back into newer gear, it’s a great way to save some money doing that. 

You also are supporting a local business owner and the local photography industry near you. 

Fees/Commission: None. They sell the gear you provide and pay you for it. 

Payment Methods: Cash or store credit. 

What You’ll Need to Resell Cameras

Reselling cameras require very little equipment. You can even get away with not being an expert since there are platforms that give a fair valuation for you. You’ll need a few things to get started, though. 

  • Camera equipment: You’ll need to get what you’re selling! Whether it’s your old gear, wholesale products, or used equipment you want to flip. 
  • Online profile: Depending on the method of selling you choose, you may need to build online profiles on different selling platforms. 
  • Home address: Since some of the selling platforms require you to give an address to receive a shipping label, you’ll need somewhere you can receive this. 

How To Resell Cameras: Step-By-Step Instructions

Reselling cameras is a straightforward process, you just need to decide which method you’re interested in pursuing. Each has its pros and cons, so figure out which of the following is the best for you:

Step 1: Get the Gear

To sell used camera gear, you need to get some gear! If you don’t already own camera equipment, look for some. 

You can find used camera gear on sites or buy new ones from online stores. You’ll want to get the brands that maintain their value the best, like Nikon and Sony. While the upfront cost may be more, it’s because they’re a safer investment. 

If you already have some gear, that’s great. Pull out everything you want to sell. Get it valued at KEH or other online tools so you know how much it’s worth. You don’t have to sell your items to them to get them valued. 

Step 2: Choose the Method

You’ll need to decide whether you want to sell straight to the consumer or go through a store that will buy it from you. 

Some reasons you may consider selling to a store are:

  • You don’t want to find buyers or make listings
  • You don’t want to deal with all the hassle of communicating with buyers 
  • You would rather have greater store credit to trade in rather than cash 
  • You don’t want to handle shipping to individual buyers 

On the other hand, selling directly to the buyer can give you a greater profit. It’s up to you to decide if the time and energy are worth your time. 

Step 3: Sell Camera Gear

If you choose to sell to a store, reach out to a few different ones to find the best offer. There may be local camera stores that offer you more money than the online stores, or vice versa. 

For those that want to list online, try to stick to only listing on one platform in case it sells. Communicate clearly with interested buyers and follow the tips above to make a sale! 

Can You Make Money Flipping Cameras?

Cameras are not a great thing to flip. They don’t gain value easily or quickly. Repairing cameras and equipment takes extensive knowledge, and there isn’t great money in flipping them.

What is a Camera Resale Business?

Building a business out of cameras requires a larger collection of gear. Since camera equipment doesn’t increase in value, it’s not a good item to invest in and wait to gain value. For this reason, most people will sell their own gear they benefited from over time. 

A camera resale business will look different depending on the size of the business. You can build an entire camera store out of selling used gear, or just have a side hustle to sell used camera equipment to buyers. 

Is Reselling Cameras a Good Way to Make Money?

If you’re looking to buy gear and flip it, camera equipment may not be your best option. While it’s great to sell your personal used gear to invest in newer equipment, it’s rare for camera gear to gain or maintain value over time. 

If you already have camera gear, then it can be a great way to make money. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Should People Buy Cameras Second-Hand?

Second-hand cameras are a great way to save money to get started with photography. Photographers are picky with their personal preferences and may sell a perfectly good camera because they don’t like a small thing that you won’t even notice! 

What Types of Cameras Are Worth the Most?

Leica, Nikon, Canon, Sony, Rolleiflex, and Hasselblad are the brands that are worth the most. While vintage and antique cameras sell for the highest, there are DSLR cameras that are highly sought after from Nikon and Canon. 

Similar Tutorials to Check Out

If the idea of reselling interests you, but you’re not sure about cameras and camera equipment, check out some other similar side hustles. 

  • Resell wine: Wine outperforms the stock market every year, so it’s a great item to look at reselling. It can be a slow process to make profits, but it’s worth checking out. 
  • Resell tools: The tool market has consistent demand that makes it easy to buy and sell. You can focus locally, making the selling process a bit easier.  
  • Resell Supreme: Street brand Supreme rakes up insanely high profits in a short period, but it can be difficult to get your hands on the right gear. 

Wrapping Up 

Selling used camera gear is a great way to continue to feed your hobby without spending too much money upfront. It takes a bit of effort to sell things, but it’s worth it when you reap the profits and can invest in more gear. It’s a great cycle. 

If you’re ready to start selling your camera equipment after this, then we’re happy to have helped! Leave a comment or share with a fellow camera enthusiast who might be interested in how to resell camera gear. 

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