13 Best Places to Sell Used Tools Locally & Online

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by Erin Schollaert

Updated

The average person has far more tools than they need, which is possible income they don’t realize they’re missing out on!

So everyone should take account of their tools, decide which they’ll probably never use enough to keep around: and then look into finding the best place to sell used tools.

If you’re curious about how much you can make and where to sell used tools: these are the facts, you need to know.

What tools sell the best?

tools

Of course, power tools will always be worth money, but for older non-electric tools, it can be hard to tell who buys old tools and which is the most valuable.

If you have any of these, they’re going to be worth money, regardless of where you decide to sell them.

Antique woodworking tools, old levels, and even old tool chests have sold for thousands of dollars.

Each of these were at least a hundred years old when they went to auction and in near-pristine condition that ensured they looked fantastic for display.

Vintage goods are in incredibly high demand Today, selling vintage shoes from thrift stores can even net you hundreds.

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Your tools don’t have to be a hundred years old to sell: but antique tools bring in the most money. In fact, tools continue to be one of the best things to sell on eBay.

If there’s anything your family has passed down that you don’t need anymore: it might be time to sell!

Best Places to Sell Used Tools Locally

Not everyone wants to handle shipping; many would rather do their deals in person.

These are some of the best ways people sell their old tools in person, and what sells best at each of them!

1. Auction Houses

This can be the best way to ensure you make your item’s worth in cash for antiques and unique items.

The best tools that sell at auction houses are full sets of tools or toolboxes.

You can also get away with selling single individual items, like old wood carving equipment, but you may not be able to make the amount you want for it.

Avoid touching up or refinishing any old tools before taking them to auction, as this may hurt the value.

Trends on the Rise

Due to a large number of antiques becoming available, auction sites and companies saw incredible growth in 2020 and 2021. Consumer Reports has found that a seller listing items at auctions is more likely to get what their thing is worth than any other method.

2. Flea and Thrift Markets

If you have an entire shed’s worth of old tools you’re getting rid of: it could be time to rent a booth at a flea market. Learning how to sell at a flea market is easier than you might think.

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Although you can sell one-off items at these markets, they often bring in far more money for those with enough things to set up a booth.

Rustic-antique sells the best at flea and thrift markets, anything that stylishly shows its age. Selling silver flatware is a go-to product to sell at flea markets as well.

Make Sure to place the most eye-catching items front and center to lure people in to look at the rest of your stall.

3. Small Neighborhood Hardware Stores

Not every small neighborhood hardware store offers this, but many are more than willing to either buy your old tools to resell or sell them for you for a percentage off the top.

This is only possible at stores that are one-off and small, not corporate like Lowes.

If they don’t personally resell old or used tools, they may know of a store that does, so don’t be afraid to talk to them!

4. Pawn Shops

hardware

These stores are best if you’re trying to sell something quickly. The best performers at pawn shops are toolboxes, power tools, and unique or impressive tools that aren’t extremely common.

This is, unfortunately, one of the lowest payers on our list since most pawn shops try to buy for as low as possible to make a large profit.

If you want to make more money in this type of store: remember to haggle.

5. Garage and Yard Sales

Speaking of haggling: garage and yard sales are awesome ways to make money and get your items displayed without competitors.

The key to a successful garage or yard sale is to advertise as heavily as possible leading up to it.

Post on local craigslist, Facebook, and Instagram tags and allow people to get a glimpse at what you’re selling before the day of. This will build hype, so they’ll come out to buy.

Trends on the Rise

There are between six and nine million garage sales a year: so it’s vital that yours feels different and eye-catching. Offering digital ways to pay, like Paypal or Venmo, will ensure that you don’t limit your customer base, and more people can buy from you.

6. Consignment Shops

Consignment shops aren’t just for clothing: many sell anything from furniture to antique and used tools.

It’s hard to predict what will sell at these, but the larger the collection you have, the better.

However, be aware that they do take an amount off the top of your sales, and if your item doesn’t sell, you may be given it back after a couple of months.

Best Places to Sell Used Tools Online

Selling tools online is easier because it allows you to have access to a far larger audience and gives you the chance to find someone who’s passionate about old tools far easier.

These are the top websites to use for these sales!

7. eBay

ebay-review-to-sell-stuff

eBay is back in style big time, with buyers returning to the global online marketplace in droves.

Any tool possible can sell here: what matters most is how you display them when you list them for sale. Be descriptive about their condition, take good brightly lit pictures, and be honest about every detail.

The more unique something is, the quicker and for more that it will sell. This is a little known secret when it comes to how to sell fast on eBay.

Trends on the Rise

Vintage and collectible items like older tools are among eBay’s top ten best-selling things every year. Only 28% of sellers on eBay are in the USA, so offering local and fast shipping is an awesome way to set yourself apart from the competition.

8. SawMillCreek

This website mainly focuses on selling wood: but if you go in the classifieds section and community discussion areas: you’ll find plenty of people buying and selling tools ranging from woodworking to power tools.

You’ll need to have good pictures and know what you’re talking about when selling here: because the buyers will be asking lots of questions.

This is an awesome way to get your items worthwhile, possibly meeting others with similar interests to you.

9. Ruby Lane

If your tools are antiques or extremely vintage: Ruby Lane is the place to sell.

This vintage and lifestyle market connects people with buyers who are interested in vintage and older items.

If your item is from a specific era, you’ll be able to sell easier if you have anything to support that statement, like documents showing when it was bought or even images of others sold from that time.

10. Etsy

Etsy may be best known for art and custom gifts: but it’s amazing when it comes to antique and older tools.

The best tools that sell are ones that have a recognizably vintage look or are made by companies that don’t operate anymore.

This site is more for collectors than anyone who would use the tools, but it’s a great start if you have a lot to sell and want to build an online store for yourself. Today, it’s definitely one of the best websites to sell things.

11. Craigslist

There’s no way to predict what will sell on craigslist or how much you’ll make on it: since every area is unique.

The most important thing to know while selling on craigslist is that people will try to bargain as much as possible with you and that you need to be willing to meet people halfway if they have to travel to get to you.

Including things as a ‘lot’ sale where they pay a flat price for multiple items may help sales.

12. Facebook Marketplace

Similar to Craigslist, this online marketplace can be different depending on the area you’re in.

Since everyone can see every comment people make on this marketplace, it’s vital that you’re kind to people and honest about what you offer and what you have.

If someone feels like they’re being lied to, they may raise noise about it- which could keep others from buying your items.

Be honest, thorough, and ready for those trying to talk you down to accept a quarter of what you’re looking for.

13. TIAS (The International Antique Shop)

The international antique shop is an amazing store with something for everyone, sold by everyone.

You can list the most bizarre items you have that don’t really fit anywhere else, and there’s bound to be a tool collector who wants that item.

Therefore, it’s vital that you can substantiate any claims you make about things here. The more unique something is:, the better it will sell.

Wrapping Up

There’s no reason your old tools should sit around and do nothing, especially with how many people are out there willing to buy them!

Instead, consider selling your tools by looking into one of these excellent choices for yourself.

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About the Author

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Erin is a business teacher and mother of three. When she’s not in the classroom or fulfilling her obligations as an A+ hockey and lacrosse mom, she’s working on her latest article.