Ask LH: Where Can I Buy Refurbished Phones?

Dear Lifehacker, I'm looking for a secondhand/refurbished mobile phone. Can you recommend any online sites that are trustworthy? Thanks, Penny Pincher

Dear PP,

When it comes to buying refurbished products, we usually recommend Greys Online which has good range of items at decent prices. However, mobile phones is one of the few categories that Greys Online doesn't sell. Sorry!

There are several local websites that specialise in refurbished smartphones, including OzMobiles, QuickMobileFix, AZOD, Rufurbphones and Cellect. We've never tested any of these services, so cannot vouch for their trustworthiness or reliability. Our advice is to search online forums like OzBargain and Whirlpool to see what customers are saying.

If you'd rather deal with a physical store here in Australia, EB Games has a pre-owned phones section that's worth checking out. The prices aren't amazing, but at least you can take it back if something goes wrong. EB Games offers the following pre-owned guarantee:

If this product stops working within 3 months of purchase, simply return it to any EB Games store along with your receipt, and we’ll happily exchange it for another. (This product may not include original packaging or instruction manual.)

You can also get refurbished phones - including flagships from Samsung and Apple - from Kogan. However, you will need to use the search bar as the site doesn't have a dedicated refurbished section. (Just type the phone model you're looking for along with "refurbished".)

Otherwise, your best bet is to buy second-hand from Gumtree or eBay. Our personal pick would be eBay which has better buyer protections in place via PayPal.

Naturally, you should only purchase a refurbished phone from a reputable dealer, retailer or manufacturer. Also take the time to check the price against other listings for the same product. eBay has a range of safety tips specifically for phone refurbs which you can read here.

If any readers have additional recommendations to make, let PP know in the comments Good luck!

Cheers Lifehacker

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Comments

    I'd never buy a "flaghip" phone secondhand. Except maybe from Apple's official refurbished store (which seems to be out of iPhones in Australia at the moment). Too many stolen/blocked/IMEI-changed/dodgy/fake/scammers out there.
    Take the money and buy a new mid-range phone that comes with warranty - and specs that mean they'll be precious little difference between it and what you pay for a gamble on a used item.

    I've bought refurbed phones from AliExpress quite successfully

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