Do Refurbished Macbooks Offer Better Value Than New Ones?

When we think about second-hand devices, we usually associate them with broken or unusable machines that have been passed on for profit.  However, this is not always the case as even reputable retailers like Phonebot sell Refurbished Macbooks. In this article, we will look at the facts behind refurbished MacBooks and whether they are worth the buy in 2021.

What Refurbished Means

Refurbished products are devices that have been returned or re-sent to the company due to factory defects and then fixed and quality-assured to be fully functional again. Defects can range from storages, ports, display, or even touchscreens experienced by owners. Recycled goods from owners who discontinue the use of a certain unit also belong to this category. These are then resold if they meet the requirements of being usable by future owners. Refurbished devices are offered in various grades and usually those grades are Like New, Open box, Grade A and B.

The Grades of the device represents the condition the device is in currently, lets discuss the grades and what they mean.

Grade A

The Grade A device might have minor scuffs or scratches which you can easily overlook.

Grade B

A Grade B device have more scratches or scuffs than a Grade A device.

Like New

This one is self-explanatory, a like new device is in prestine condition and looks like a brand new phone.

Open Box

An Open box is device is barely used and usually comes with the original box and accessories.

The right grade for you depends on your budget and the device you plan on going for.

Are they legitimate?

Yes, and no. Refurbished MacBooks coming from reputable retailers are sure to be legitimate as they are fully tested and examined to work like new units. Remember that the source is one of the most important factors to look at when purchasing a refurbished unit as this could make or break the condition of the device.

Certified MacBooks

Certified Macs are those products that have been checked and quality-assured by Apple. These Macs are on-par with brand new ones as they have been fully tested and replaced with genuine and legitimate Apple parts, as well as completely cleaned inside and out. Certified Macs are also installed with either the original Operating System or the latest one that is available. However, you must take note that the supply for these types of units is very limited. It’s better to buy from a reputable retailer, you can save more and they’d have a steadier supply of refurbished Macbooks.

The Takeaway

Here are the advantages and disadvantages of purchasing a refurbished MacBook that you need to consider.


  • Lots of savings. Refurbished MacBooks are discounted as they are secondhand units that have been given new life. This could mean markdown costs that can spare you a couple of hundred bucks. Refurbished devices offer more value than a brand new phone.
  • Same Performance as Brand New. Thanks to the quality control of the devices, they are guaranteed to work with the same efficiency as brand new units. After all, the parts have been replaced with components that are legitimate and fool-proof. This ensures that they perform just like they did when they were first taken out of the box.
  • Direct Store Purchase. Purchasing from the official store brings added benefits in terms of peace of mind and confidence. You will do every part of the process on the online store and even receive benefits such as free shipping.


  • Limited Stocks. Available stocks of refurbished units highly depend on the number of Macs being returned to the company. This means that they are not always available for purchase and waiting for the units to replenish may take some time. As discussed above, if you buy from an Industry expert, you won’t be facing this problem. Reputable retailers make sure all in-demand products are in stock and in various Grades.


Prices of refurbished MacBooks are discounted at around 15 to 18% in Apple’s official store. This might seem a bit low, but when equated to a MacBooks high price, it could mean savings up to $300. It is possible to get a lower price point when inquiring at third-party vendors. The price of a refurbished Macbook starts from $1000 AUD, it depends on the model and grade you’re buying.

A good tip before purchasing refurbished MacBooks coming from the non reputable retailer is to do a background check and look at the reviews that are on the page. This could separate the thin line between getting high-quality devices and disappointing ones.

After Purchase Warranties

The warranty for a Refurbished MacBook is the same as brand new units. You get a one-year coverage with free delivery as well as returns. This can also be extended depending on your liking through AppleCare. This warranty period might be different when purchasing from third-party vendors as they have different processes and methods in repairs. Reputable retailers offer a warranty along with a change of mind policy, if anything does go wrong you can contact them either through call/online or visiting the store.


Buying a second-hand unit especially when it comes to MacBooks should not be viewed as bad light. Instead, it must be seen as a practical method to greatly save money while still acquiring high-quality goods. If you want a good-as-new MacBook at a lower price point, then Refurbished MacBooks fit you well. After all, they are quality-assured especially for units sold by the Apple company itself.

If you are careful with your decisions, you can even extend your savings further by purchasing a refurbished device from a third-party reputable vendors. However, you need to know your seller well as this could either mean huge savings or huge loss in the long run. Like any other stores, there are great third-party refurbished MacBook vendors and there are also awful ones. Make sure you check out the reviews and customer feedback to make sure you’re buying from a reputable vendor.