How to make your junk sellable no matter how broken

make your junk sellable

One of the best ways to make some quick cash is to have a look around the house for items that you no longer use or care about. While selling good condition working items will always fetch a great price, you might be surprised to know that even your dirty, old or even BROKEN items can bring in some serious cash. Below I go into some detail on how to successfully make your junk sellable. By following these steps and despite the item not being in the best condition you can achieve the best possible price. Don’t forget to use our eBay and Paypal fee calculator.


This is one of the most important points on this list. ALWAYS make sure you clean old dirty items. There is always a way to clean something up to make it nice and shiny again.

  1. For clothes/ fabrics, wash and iron clothes before taking any photographs for selling. Make sure to follow the washing instructions. Do not try to spray any perfumes and try to find a neutral background with natural light. Hanging on a wide coat hanger will show more of the pattern or design if it has one.
  2. For electrical items or other things which have hard surfaces, at first glance it may seem clean to you but grab some alcoholic wipes and really make it shine again for maximum profit. Clean any screens carefully and don’t push too hard. You don’t want to break it more!
  3. If the item cannot be cleaned with normal cleaning products, or you are not confident to clean it yourself; mention it in the description to make buyers aware before the purchase. This shows your an honest buyer who does not have the experience to clean it. There is nothing wrong with this so don’t be put off.

Selling tips for ebay UK Quick tip! Even if your electrical item is broken, if you make sure it looks clean it shows that it has generally been well looked after and the buyer will be more confident to purchase it. If you are auctioning old broken items I know from experience that if you don’t clean the items it puts a lot of buyers off. I secured a batch of Playstation 4 controllers only to find some were broken. When I listed them uncleaned they did not get anywhere near the return compared to those I had cleaned. 

Restore and Revive

If the item is broken, check if it is possible to revive it. Sometimes it might be worth your time (and a bit of money) to get it working again. However, don’t make a move unless you are confident, otherwise you will risk breaking it even more. 

Older video game consoles can sell for some serious money other items include:

  • Old VHS tape players
  • CD walkmans
  • Nintendo, Atari, Sega and Lynx
  • Old Apple items like the ipods and imacs
  • Vintage/ old toys. 


Throughout this entire website, in each and every article almost I will talk about photographing your items. That’s because this is probably the most important aspect of your listing and if you do not be honest and capture everything the item will get returned. At your expense. 

On eBay photos make up part of the description and as such make or break whether a buyer takes the plunge or not. 

Here are some tips for taking good photos:

  1. It might seem obvious but make sure to use a camera with decent resolution. Nobody likes blurry photos
  2. Portrait or landscape? Have a browse on the second hand goods websites and choose the best orientation for your item. Most of the time landscape photos work better!
  3. ALWAYS use natural light for photos
  4. Make sure the background is a single colour background (preferably white) without any unrelated things in the shot
  5. Get a good angle! Attempt a few different camera angles to get the best out of your product
  6. Front and back, left to right. Zoom in for any details (texture, branding, damaged corners etc)
  7. If you can, try the item on or turn it on to show it working
  8. Take at least 8-10 photos for each item, especially for a high price item
  9. When it’s finally time to upload, don’t use any unnecessary filters (keep true colours of the items)


As much as the photos make up your description in the listing so does your title, descriptive text and keywords. A good and detailed description is definitely vital to make your junk sellable. Be honest about your product, describe it as thorough as possible. Some questions to answer are:

  1. How long have you had it? 
  2. Is it damaged or working? 
  3. Has it been well looked after? 
  4. What’s the condition like? 

Even if people can see most of it from the photos you took, still mention it in the description. Everyone likes an honest seller, don’t try to be cheeky and hide something, hoping that nobody finds out… they will! Plus, if the buyer is not happy with the item when he/she received it, this will most certainly affect your seller reviews which will put future buyers off your listing. 

Selling tips for ebay UK Quick tip! Check out our other article How to sell on eBay: Selling tips for eBay UK which is a beginners guide to selling on eBay. It covers photography as well as 16 other in-depth topics that will help make your junk sellable.

While these tips may seem simple, they are easily forgotten and if you follow these basic steps you will already be on your way to make your junk sellable.