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Considering how often Bitcoin has been in the news over the past few months, it’s no surprise that there are plenty of resources out there for people looking to buy.
So for first-time buyers, the process of getting started is simple.
But as with any investment, it’s wise to plan ahead.
If there comes a time that you no longer want to invest in Bitcoin, or you want to cash out on your investment, what will your options be?
That’s a question you should ideally know the answer to before purchasing.
Fortunately, whether you’ve planned ahead or not, there are several options for selling Bitcoin.
In this post, we’ll go over what those options are, as well as a few tips for getting the best returns from your sale.
The easiest and most obvious way to sell cryptocurrency is the same way you Buy Bitcoin: through an online exchange platform.
These platforms essentially serve as mediators for cryptocurrency sales, and they’re typically considered the safest way to handle transactions.
Today, Coinbase is the most well-known and one of the most popular — but there are plenty of others to choose from depending on your needs.
In many cases, if you originally purchased your Bitcoin through an exchange, you can sell it on the same site.
And regardless of which platform you use, the process is fairly straightforward.
You’ll need to create an account (or log into an existing one), then connect it to your bank account. Many sites will also require photo identification to verify your identity.
Then, you can add your Bitcoins and create a “sell order.” This indicates that you’re looking for a buyer at the going market rate.
Once a buyer purchases your Bitcoins, the funds will be transferred to your bank account, minus the exchange’s selling fee.
Just as with buying Bitcoins, the clearest alternative to standard online exchanges is peer to peer (P2P) trading.
These sites help sellers find buyers but don’t handle the transactions directly. You can essentially think of them as a sort of Craigslist for cryptocurrency.
And while this method isn’t quite as straightforward as having an online exchange handle the entire process, it’s still fairly simple.
First, you’ll need to register with the site of your choice. For this type of sale, LocalBitcoins is one of the more popular options.
Once you’ve created your account, you can create a sell order for a specific amount. When a buyer shows interest, you’ll get a notification and can move forward with the transaction.
But unlike with a standard exchange, you and the buyer are responsible for working out your payment details.
While many users prefer to use bank transfers, some buyers and sellers opt to meet up in person and exchange cash. This is a particularly popular option among Bitcoin traders who wish to keep their transactions anonymous.
While Bitcoin ATMs are still a relatively new concept, they’re becoming easier to find in major cities.
In fact, Coin ATM Radar now shows 2,873 in 66 different countries. As a result, they’re now an increasingly popular way to exchange cash for Bitcoin.
It’s important to note, though, that many of these machines only allow users to buy Bitcoin. Only 40% of them support selling the currency.
If you’re familiar with Bitcoin ATMs, Robocoin, Genesis Coin, BitAccess, and General Bytes machine typically support sell operations.
So if you’re interested in using an ATM to sell your coins, you can use Coin ATM Radar’s map and check the “Crypto-Fiat” filter box, then uncheck all other options. This will show a list of ATM locations at which you can trade your Bitcoin for standard currency.
Once you’ve located an ATM, the process of selling coins is relatively simple.
First, you’ll typically need to verify your identity using photo ID. Then, you can send Bitcoin to the ATM using a QR code.
Depending on the ATM, you may be able to withdraw cash immediately.
In some cases, however, you’ll need to wait for the transaction to be confirmed. If you use an ATM that requires confirmation, you’ll be given a redemption code and receive an automated text when your cash is available for pickup.
Then, you can return to the ATM, enter your redemption code, and withdraw your funds in cash.
If you’re looking to sell your Bitcoin, you want to be sure that you’re getting the best possible returns on your investment.
But much like stocks, the value of Bitcoin fluctuates — and in many cases, it can fluctuate greatly in short periods of time.
So how can you tell when it’s a good time to sell?
Unfortunately, there’s no clear answer to this question. There’s no way to know how the currency will fluctuate in the future, and how valuable your investment will be a few weeks, months, or years from now.
That being said, some cryptocurrency experts recommend only selling a portion of your Bitcoin if you’re risk-averse or have pressing financial needs.
So, for example, if you’re looking to make a significant purchase like home or car, and selling your Bitcoin to make that purchase could be a wise financial decision.
But if you’re financially stable and okay with a certain amount of risk, holding some Bitcoin could prevent you from missing out on potential increases in valuation in the future.
And if you invested in Bitcoin early, investment advisor Linas Rajackas explained to Business Insider that it could be a good idea to sell enough to make back what you originally invested.
That way, you’re not risking losing your initial investment. So in the worst case scenario, you’ll break even — and in the best case, you’ll see significant returns in the future.
But what if you know that you want to sell, and have no interest in waiting years for a payoff?
In this case, it depends on how Bitcoin has fluctuated since you originally purchased, and how comfortable you are with the amount you’d get if you sold on any given day.
Check out an online exchange or peer to peer site and see what you could expect to earn, then make a decision based on whether that amount is worth it to you.
After all, investments are a highly personal decision. And because it’s impossible to predict how Bitcoin will fluctuate in the future, no one can tell you with absolute certainty when the best time is to sell.
That being said, regardless of how involved you are, it’s always a good idea to stay aware of what’s happening in the cryptocurrency world.
And if you aren’t sure how, take a look at our resource on how to stay informed about Bitcoin.