Earn Cash For Old Electronics And Save Gorillas

Turn Old Cell Phones Into Cash

Having a baby makes you realize that you already own a ton of stuff.  Babies also seem to accumulate a lot of stuff. Being that I’m trying to simplify my life and live with a lot less, I’ve been going through boxes I haven’t opened in a while.  

One of these boxes had old cell phones, laptop, cds, dvds, and gaming system games.  I had completely forgotten I had these items. The gaming systems had long been sold at a garage sale and these games had been forgotten.

While I could probably make more money listing everything for sale myself of various platforms, my free time is minimal so I’d prefer not to spend it meeting buyers in the parking lot of a restaurant for a $3 profit.  It also seems like half the time the buyers don’t show up or are running late.

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Selling Outdated Electronics

A quick search later I found Gazelle and Decluttr.  Gazelle buys iPhones, Galaxy phones, iPads, and MacBooks.  Decluttr buys those items as well as video games, CDs, DVDs, Blu-rays, iPods, and a wider range of smartphones.  Even better is that Decluttr has an app where you can scan the barcodes instead of having to enter them manually.  

Any leftover electronics went straight to EcoATM.  Use the share code “plantsonify” at the ATM to get an extra $5. My city has quite a few locations. I never noticed them before.  It’s a great way to get cash for old electronics and recycle them so they don’t go into the landfill.

Recycling Cell Phones Saves Gorillas

While money is great, I also love our Earth.  My son will have to live here long after I’m gone so I’d like to leave it better than I found it.  The outside of most phones is metal or plastic. The internal components contain precious metals. When tossed into a landfill, these metals can pollute the soil and leach into the groundwater.  Then the air is polluted when additional materials must be produced to make more phones instead of reusing the old ones.

One such metal in cell phones is tantalum which is extracted from an ore called coltan.  Coltan is found in the Democratic Republic of Congo and the majority of it is used for cell phone production.  Unfortunately, coltan is being mined from the rainforest where the Eastern Lowland Gorilla is located. The wild gorilla population has gone from 20,000 20 years ago to only 3,800.  

Young gorilla in the rainforest.

Gorillas aren’t the only animals affected.  The area is being deforested due to the mining and many animals poached for food.  Recycling your cell phone reduces the demand for new coltan which will prevent additional mining of the ore.  

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Earn Cash And Save Gorillas At The Same Time

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Steffa Mantilla

Certified Financial Education Instructor

Steffa is a Certified Financial Education Instructor (CFEI) and the founder behind Money Tamer. Her 12-year background in operant conditioning and positive behavioral change training is used to help people find effective motivators to change their harmful money behaviors. Steffa explains the reasons “why” behind people’s financial behaviors and how to successfully change them. After paying off over $80,000 in debt through budgeting, she now teaches families how to get their own finances in order. You can learn more about her here.

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