Why You Should Sell Your Gear to a Reseller

A Nikon camera with an attached lens is placed on top of a Nikon Nikkor 80-200mm f/2.8D AF lens box. The background includes a blurred view of plants and a shelf, adding a touch of greenery to the setup.

Selling the gear you no longer use can be a great way to earn money back, whether you are putting that money towards new gear or simply trying to make a buck. Plus, there’s no sense in unused gear sitting on a shelf collecting dust when someone else could enjoy it.

Full disclosure: This article is brought to you by MPB.

Let’s face it, though, the process of selling gear can seem daunting — so much so that, if you’re anything like me, you put it off for ages.

At best, it is headache-inducing, but at worst, it can be downright dangerous. The risks associated with buying gear from online marketplaces are well known, but the risks and pain associated with selling your gear on such platforms are less discussed. Instead of taking that risk, selling through a well-known and respected reseller such as MPB can be a much safer and easier option.

What Is Involved in Selling Gear on Your Own

When it comes time to sell your gear yourself, there are numerous necessary steps. First, you have to clean the gear so it looks its best and photograph it. As a photographer, that likely involves more than just some quick phone snaps you upload directly to the listing. Then comes writing up a listing with all relevant details, choosing a price, and posting it on a marketplace.

Once the listing is up, the work isn’t done, either. You must then field ridiculous lowball offers and constant “is this still available” messages. Finally, after finding someone legit and serious about purchasing the gear, you have to meet them in person somewhere or ship it off. Both options come with risks and headaches.

A hand holds a Nikon DSLR camera (model D800) with a lens attached, positioned against a plain white background. Dust is visible on the camera body, indicating heavy use.

What To Watch Out for When Selling Gear

Unfortunately, selling gear this way can be a risky endeavor. PetaPixel is riddled with stories of scams from people trying to sell used gear through various platforms. Back in 2020, one writer detailed his experience trying to sell something on Amazon and how the buyer managed to keep the camera and the money. In 2017, another individual told of their experience getting scammed on eBay. And, of course, there are also stories of people dealing with scams through Facebook Marketplace. While these stories are older, similar situations are still happening.

No matter what platform you use, multiple payment methods, including Venmo and PayPal, can also expose you to shady subjects. Most of these scams involve getting you to send the gear but immediately requesting a refund, which is typically granted since these platforms tend to back and support the buyer, not the seller. That leaves you out of your gear and your money, not to mention the time it took you to get to that point.

A person with earphones sits at a cluttered desk, smiling and inspecting a camera lens. A computer monitor displaying a camera is in the background. Various camera equipment and accessories are scattered across the desk.
Image Credit: MPB

Resellers Are a Safer Way

Selling through a trusted reseller is the way to go if you want to avoid headaches and the potential for substantial financial losses.

MPB is one such site. In fact, it is the largest global platform for buying, selling, and trading used photography and videography gear. The company recirculates over 500,000 cameras, lenses, and accessories each year, so it’s accustomed to handling used equipment. It also accepts more than just cameras and lenses. You could sell them batteries, camera bags, tripods, and more.

One of the most significant benefits of selling to a reseller is the time it saves you. Instead of all that’s required when selling on your own, you fill out a form at MPB to generate an instant quote, print the provided pre-paid shipping label, package up your gear, and drop it at a FedEx location (or schedule a home pickup).

A person wearing a gray hoodie is sitting at a desk, cleaning a camera lens with a small brush. A laptop with an open screen is in the background along with various items like a keyboard, a camera, and stationery.

Once your equipment arrives at MPB, the team carefully inspects it and adjusts the quote if necessary. You can confirm or cancel the sale, and once it’s all finalized, payment will be sent securely to your bank account. That’s it. It’s significantly less work on your part, so you can focus on photographing and not fielding obnoxious questions.

This is how one of PetaPixel‘s staffers finally got rid of all their DSLR equipment and accessories, and he described the entire process as straightforward. It turns out some of his gear was in better condition than he thought, so he ended up with more money than the instant quote.

Beyond the time savings, selling through MPB is also much safer. You don’t need to meet a stranger in a parking lot to exchange gear. There’s also no risk of someone on the other side being a scammer and you not getting your money. You may get more or less than your instant quote once the gear is inspected, but you are not obligated to sell your gear for less — there is an opportunity to decline the official quote and take your gear back.

A section of a website for selling used gear to MPB is shown. The interface includes fields to enter the model name and to select the condition of the item, with options: Like new, Excellent, Good, Well used, and Heavily used. A pink "Add to quote" button is at the bottom right.

Save Time and Earn Money by Selling to a Trusted Reseller

If you have gear collecting dust, you can turn it into cash. While you certainly could prep, photograph, and list on your own, that likely leaves you dealing with hagglers and potential scammers while taking up a lot of time. You could make more money selling it yourself since there’s no third party taking a cut, but your time and energy are also worth something. Resellers like MPB make the process much easier, so you can get back to the fun parts of photography faster.

Full disclosure: This article is brought to you by MPB.