Best places to buy second hand online and on the highstreet…
Buying second hand has become even more popular in recent years as more and more people try to reduce their carbon footprint.
I remember around 15 years ago spending around £60 on a jumper. For some reason that day I decided to pop into a charity shop and you’ll never guess what was hanging on a rail…the same bloomin’ jumper! For a fiver!!
Since then I’ve barely bought anything new.
Since, becoming a mum and having zero time for things like going to the toilet, shopping or sleeping I’ve turned to buying second hand online.
I always add a little note asking to seller to pack my preloved items in reused packaging and preferably recyclable or compostable.
We also gift mostly preloved items or cash.
This is slightly more controversial as there is still a stigma attached to gifting second hand items.
Considering a massive 60 million unwanted Christmas presents are exchanged every year that is reason enough for me.
Not only is it good to know that we’ve given a new home to something that may otherwise be unwanted but we save money too!
So, do you buy second hand online?
Would you or do you gift second hand?
I’ve put together a list of my favourite places to source good quality preloved items…
19 best places to buy second-hand goods
Gadgets are often top of most people’s wish lists nowadays and thankfully there are some pretty good refurbished options out there.
I have not bought a new mobile phone since listening to Bandi from Congo Calling talk about the horrific crimes that take place to make these gadgets.
Illegal mining in the eastern parts of the country continues to fuel exploitation, child-labour and violence, which in turn denies local people peace, stability and the chance to flourish from the proper management of Congo’s natural resources.
If you buy from Music Magpie you’ll get a 12 month warrantee and a hugely reduced price!
2. cEx (Complete Entertainment Exchange) or webuy
cEx has both an online (webuy) and retail stores.
You’ll find mobiles, video games, DVDs, computers, TVs and more.
They also offer a 24 month warranty for peace of mind!
This UK run business aims to ‘sell a vast range of games, to do so at a fair price, to ship orders quickly, to be quick and helpful in response to any customer queries and to give great trade-in prices’.
4. Amazon Certified Refurbished
Customers can purchase refurbished electronic products that are covered by a 1-year limited warranty.
Good if you’re looking to buy a preloved PC, smartphone, tablet, video game, kitchen appliance or other gadget.
5. Amazon Warehouse
It’s well worth checking Amazon Warehouse for used items.
I’ve managed to buy a few as new items (yogurt maker, books, CDs) that where perfect other than the packaging!
I never understand why so much value is placed upon a cardboard box or plastic sleeve!
Warehouse items are categorized as new, like new, refurbished, used(good), used (satisfactory) so you have a good idea of what you’re getting.
I’ve had mixed results with this massive online auction site.
It is however my go-to for preloved books and often I’ll find the boys toys and our clothes there too.
eBay do charge 15% commission which can push up prices, along with postage charges.
Seriously though, I can’t stress enough how awesome eBay is for secondhand books.
I’ve just bought loads of kids books from the seller World of Books who say that they stop over 12,500 tonnes of books a year going to landfill sites!
ebid is a similar to eBay but lesser known.
I prefer the layout of this site though and there are some bargains to be found.
Have you ever heard of Bumblebee Auctions?
It’s the official site for UK Police property disposal!
Basically a site where you can bid on seized goods.
There isn’t a huge amount on there (which is probably a good thing!) But it’s definitely worth a look if you’re planning to purchase bikes, tools, clothes, perfume or jewellery.
9. Facebook Local Swapshops and Free Sites
Facebook has made it so much easier for people to buy and sell second hand.
It’s free to list and it charges no commission on sales.
The best way to find swapshops in your area is as simple as typing ‘swapshop’ and where you live into the search bar on Facebook. There are usually tonnes!
I always meet sellers in a public place and take screenshots of what I’m buying.
10. Facebook Marketplace
It’s also well worth taking a look on Marketplace.
It can list items closest to you first if you’re looking for something like a sofa that’ll need collecting.
If you’re after something smaller that can be posted then look further afield.
Personally, always pay for an item with Paypal but you can read more about buying and selling safely on Marketplace here.
This selling site is owned by eBay and us the biggest classified ads site in the UK.
Selling costs nothing so you may find some good deals.
12. Shpock or “Shop in your Pocket!”
The Shpock app and website is a ‘boot sale for beautiful things’.
It’s definitely worth a look!
13. Charity Shops
I have to admit that I’ve had the odd rant recently about how out local charity shops have started charging nearly new prices for damaged items.
That said I can’t resist a charity shop browse!
Great for books, clothes, toys and CDs. I usually pick up some great stocking fillers for our boys!
14. National Trust Bookstores
If you’re visiting a National Trust properly then take a look in the second hand bookstores that many properties now have.
This highstreet store now sell secondhand and refurbished items including mobile phones, tablets, games, consoles and more.
16. Car boot sales
Still a favourite of mine and our boys (my husband just doesn’t get it!) but carboots, jumble sales and garage clearouts are the best place to find great preloved items.
I especially love the stories thay come with each purchase…we still chuckle about the seller who convinced us to buy his cheesy horror on the grounds that it was “based on a true myth!”
Find your closest sales by looking on google, asking around or spotting signs.
Membership to join your local site is free.
Search for your nearest local group, register to to receive notifications when free items become available.
You can add a WANTED ad if you’re hoping to find something specific.
Depop is more that just about selling preloved fashion.
It’s a mobile space where you can see what your friends and the people you’re inspired by are liking, buying, and selling.
In turn, your friends and creative influencers all over the world can see the things you like, buy, and sell, and are inspired by you.
I’ve not used Vinted before myself but it’s definitely worth looking at if you’re after some “new” clothes.
For more ideas for living eco consciously read this.
What are your best places to buy second hand online and on the highstreet…any to add?