How To Get Started Phone Flipping – Interview With Julia From The Phone Flipping Academy

How To Get Started Flipping Phones (Interview With Julia From Phone Flipping Academy)

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We’re excited to share an interview we did with Julia from the Phone Flipping Academy. Julia has been flipping phones for years. 

How Did You Get Started Flipping Phones?

When Julia found out she was pregnant with her eldest son she was working two jobs and her husband was working full time. They were never home, and they wanted to find a way to stay home and raise their kids and be involved. Julia looked at different side hustles on YouTube and even tried Amazon FBA and other gigs. Then she stumbled onto a page with a guy who flips phones. Julia had an old phone lying around so she decided to try it and she was able to flip it for $70. She didn’t do much with it for a few months and then when she actually posted ads looking for phones and focused on the business, she saw the potential.

She started with $60 and after a month of consecutively flipping was at almost $4,000 in profit. She ended up quitting her job and hasn’t worked a nine to five job in six years. Her husband later quit his job and they went full time on flipping phones and other electronics. By month four they were doing $10,000 a month in profit and scaled from there. 

How Does Your Phone Flipping Process Work?

Julia says there are products available in her local market because Apple is constantly releasing new models and Americans keep buying stuff. They want to do something with their old electronics.

They post ads in their cities and surrounding areas saying, “I buy electronics. I buy phones. I can pay you cash same day.” People see their ads, text them, and then sell the product. 

Julia also has direct buyers who specialize in buying phones and electronics, and they pay Julia back within an hour of being invoiced. Once she gets a phone like an iPhone 12, she will go home, create an invoice, send it to her buyer, who then pays it. Then she has all her money back that same day she has purchased the used phone. That allows her to go back out and buy even more phones that day if she chooses to do so.

How To Get Started Flipping Phones (Interview With Julia From Phone Flipping Academy)

When Do You Ship It Out?

Julia ships phones to her direct buyers the next day.

Are There Scammers Out There?

Julia says there are scammers, but she does her sales to the direct buyers through PayPal because it has seller protections. She sells larger items like laptops on eBay because she can get a few hundred more than direct buyers will give her. It’s usually very easy to see who is a scammer. She’s only had 2-3 cases in six years of selling that haven’t ended well. 

She’s worked with most of her direct buyers for years. You have to be aware of not buying phones that are iCloud locked or stolen, but once you know what to look for you’d have to be not paying attention to get scammed. 

Do You Buy Broken Phones?

Julias says she can make money off broken phones, and often that’s where she will make the most money. People don’t think broken phones are worth anything but buyers still pay good for them. Anytime Julia makes a $400 profit off a phone, it’s usually off a broken one that is severely cracked or damaged. Julia doesn’t fix phones though some resellers do. She prefers to just get the quick money and move onto the next sale. 

The direct buyers have phones graded from A-D, so a new phone with the plastic still over it would be sealed. Then there is open box which is the plastic was removed. Then there is grade A, which is where it’s been removed from the box and there’s nothing on it. Grade B is more common and is 95% of the phones Julia buys. That means it’s normal wear and tear. Anything with the slightest crack is considered C grade. Then D grade is for phones that don’t turn on, dead on arrival. They have price lists associated with the grades. 

Have You Had Any Bad Buys? 

When Julia first started flipping she was looking at a phone and it looked like a fake iPhone so she sent a photo of it to the buyer. He told her to reset the phone and when she did the little Android popped up. They almost got her and hit her with “Oh, I didn’t know, it was my grandma’s phone.”

One thing Julia teaches new phone flippers is to always reset the phone.

Is Your Family Involved?

Julia said she and her husband do the phone flipping, but they’ve also got their families doing it in other cities. She’s flipped in Florida, Atlanta, and even Hawaii.

How Much Profit Are You Looking For On Average?

Julia says the profit ranges depending on the grade, but she tells people to start with the goal of $150 profit. Usually they will end up around $100, so it’s better to start a little higher.

She also recommends meeting buyers at places close to you, within five minutes, so you’re not wasting all your time driving somewhere to meet a seller. She makes them come to her because it digs into time and profits to travel far often. Pick a safe visible place to meet.

How Are You Paying People For Phones?

Julia hasn’t had to deal with cash since COVID changed the way people pay. Before she primarily bought phones with cash, but now she uses Zelle, Venmo or CashApp.

How To Get Started Flipping Phones (Interview With Julia From Phone Flipping Academy)

What Percentage Are you Selling To Direct Buyers Versus On eBay Or Other Platforms?

95 percent of Julia’s sales are to direct buyers and then she sells about 5% on eBay. 

How Do You Do Your Ads?

Julia used to do Craigslist ads, but that recently got shut down. She now does Facebook ads. She pays $3 a day to advertise that she’s buying phones. She also uses free ad options.

What Would You Attribute To Your Phone Flipping Success?

Being consistent is the biggest thing that has helped Julia. When people tell her it’s not working, it’s because they haven’t been consistent in their ads or following up on leads. You have to post daily. You have to want to make the money and do the work to build the business. 

To learn more about phone flipping, check out Julia’s Phone Flipping Academy and use the code “fleamarketflipper” for $50 off.

Show Notes

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Robert Stephenson

I grew up in Central Florida and have lived here my whole life. I first got into buying and selling items when I was 16 years old, and have been hooked ever since. It has mostly been a hobby that makes some extra cash, but sometimes it serves as my main income as well. I don't plan on stopping any time soon. I find too many fun toys for my family (or myself), and just love the whole process.

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