13 Best Places to Sell Used Tools Locally & Online

by Erin Schollaert

Updated

The average person has far more tools than they need, which is potential income they are missing out on!

If you’re curious where to sell used tools and how much they’re worth, here’s what you need to know.

What tools sell the best?

used-tools

Power tools will always be worth money, even in rough shape. But for older non-electric tools, it can be hard to know who buys old tools if they didn’t cost much originally.

To determine what tools sell best, we analyzed sales data from eBay to see which tool brands are selling most frequently. 

Here are the results: 

top-selling-tool-brands

If you have any of these brands, they’re going to be worth money, especially if they are Milwaukee, Dewalt or Craftsman.

Best Places to Sell Used Tools Locally

Not everyone wants to handle shipping, and instead would rather get rid of their tools locally.

Here are some of the easiest ways to sell old tools in person, and what sells best at each of them!

1. Auction Houses

This is a fantastic option if you are selling antique or rare tools. 

The bestselling items at auction houses are full sets of tools or toolboxes.

You can also get away with selling single items, like old wood carving equipment, but you may not get top dollar.

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

Trends on the Rise

Due to a large number of antiques becoming available, auction sites and companies saw incredible growth in recent years. 

2. Flea and Thrift Markets

If you have an entire shed worth of old tools, it might be worth renting a booth at a flea market. If this sounds like a lot of work, selling at a flea market is easier than you might think.

why-visit-flea-markets

Rustic-antique sells best at flea markets, since that’s what this clientele typically wants. For example, selling silver flatware is a go-to product in this setting.

However, power tools still have great appeal at large flea markets. 

Make sure to place the most eye-catching items front and center to lure shoppers into exploring the rest of your stall.

3. Small Neighborhood Hardware Stores

Not every neighborhood hardware store offers this, but many are willing to buy old tools or consign them for you.

This only works at mom and pop stores, not corporate ones like Lowes.

If they don’t personally buy used tools, they may know of a store that does, so don’t be afraid to ask!

4. Pawn Shops

pawn-shop-sign-outside

These stores are best if you’re trying to sell something quickly. Top performers at pawn shops are toolboxes, power tools, and unique tools.

Unfortunately pawn shops try to buy for as low as possible, because they resell them to someone else. 

If you want to make more money at pawn shops, remember to haggle.

5. Garage and Yard Sales

Speaking of haggling, garage sales are great options for quick cash, and not having to deal with competitors.

The key to a successful yard sale is advertising heavily leading up to it.

Post on Craigslist and Facebook, and allow people to get a glimpse at what you’re selling beforehand. This builds hype, so they come out ready to buy.

Trends on the Rise

There are between six and nine million garage sales a year. As such, it’s vital that yours stands out from others. Offering digital ways to pay, like PayPal or Venmo, ensures you don’t limit your customer base.

6. Consignment Shops

Consignment shops aren’t just for clothing. In fact, many sell anything from furniture to antique tools.

It’s hard to predict what will sell, but large tool collections are bound to get a few sales.

Best Places to Sell Used Tools Online

Selling tools online can be more lucrative, because a larger audience means you’ll find buyers willing to pay higher prices.

These are the top websites to sell used tools!

7. eBay

ebay-review-to-sell-stuff

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

Virtually any tool can sell on this platform, but what matters most is how you display it in your listing. Be descriptive about condition, take pictures with great lighting, and be honest about every detail.

If you want quicker eBay sales, make sure to use the latest tips to sell fast on eBay.

8. SawMillCreek

Although SawMillCreek mainly focuses on selling wood, you can still find plenty of people buying and selling tools ranging from woodworking to power tools.

You’ll need great pictures and know what you’re talking about, because buyers ask lots of questions on this platform.

9. Ruby Lane

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

This vintage and lifestyle market connects buyers and sellers who are passionate about older items.

If the item is from a specific era, you’ll be able to sell it easier if you have documentation to support your claim (like packaging or documentation that came with the tool).

10. Etsy

Etsy may be known for selling art and custom gifts, but it’s surprisingly effective when it comes to older tools.

Your tools will sell well on Etsy if they have a vintage look, or were made by companies that don’t operate anymore.

Although this site is more for tool collectors, it’s a great start if you have a lot to sell, and want to build an online store. 

11. Craigslist

There’s no way to predict what will sell on Craigslist, since every area is unique.

On Craigslist people will try to bargain as much as possible, which makes the selling process more time consuming.

Not to mention, you’ll have to coordinate a meetup time and location to complete the transaction.

Despite all this, millions of people still use Craigslist to buy and sell on a monthly basis.

12. Facebook Marketplace

Similar to Craigslist, this online marketplace is different depending on your area.

Since everyone can see each other’s comments, it’s vital that you’re respectful to people and honest about item details.

safety-tips-for-facebook-marketplace

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

Facebook Marketplace does offer more security benefits than Craigslist, which makes it the preferred platform for many.

13. TIAS (The International Antique Shop)

The International Antique Shop is an amazing store with something for everyone.

You can list the most bizarre items, and there’s likely a tool collector who’s interested.

The more unique something is, the better it will sell.

Wrapping Up

There’s no reason old tools should sit around collecting dust, especially with how many buyers would be interested!

Instead, consider selling your tools using one of these popular methods.

About the Author

Photo of author
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.