When you think of expensive purchases, what do you usually think? Houses, cars, computers, televisions? They’re all very popular items that cost a tonne of money and we have very few ways of reducing their costs—or so you might think. There are actually many ways to lower the costs of expensive equipment, so to give you a hand, here are a couple of ways in which you can save money on those necessary purchases.
Waiting for sales
Yes, this seems like an obvious one, but it’s something that has to be mentioned. If you want to save money then you should never buy something that is brand new and has just come out, but there are more reasons for doing this than just saving money. For starters, buying new equipment (especially electronics) can leave you with a bad impression of something because it’s the first manufacturing run. For instance, the Nintendo Switch suffered a horrible launch because the device was said to be half-finished and many users complained that their device was either not working or had many issues with the construction of the device itself.
If you want to save money, then wait for sales and wait a while before you invest in something new. Let the reviews come out, do your search on the product and make sure it’s completely safe to buy before you put money on the line. Just think of the problems that arose when people started buying Samsung’s Note 7 phone. It started exploding, it hurt a few people and it even delayed a few flights. The phones were eventually recalled and buyers got their money back.
Refurbished and used items are both similar but carry very different implications. Let’s start with refurbished first; what does it actually mean? When you buy a refurbished product, it basically means it was once broken and has now been fixed. In some cases, missing parts have been replaced and components have been upgraded in order to bring the product back to a working condition. For instance, if an electronic device suffered from heating issues, then it’s likely that a refurbished version has fixed the heating issue and has installed extra measures to prevent it from developing faults in the future.
Not only does buying refurbished come with a lower price tag, it also fixes many of the issues that the device has. A great example of this is game consoles. The Xbox 360’s red ring of death was notorious and caused by heating issues. However, refurbished versions of the consoles fixed the problem completely because they replaced essentials components, resulting in a much lower temperature and thus fixing the issue completely. This means that a refurbished product is usually more reliable than a new product especially if it’s notorious for failing or breaking down. In short, trust refurbished products and don’t treat them like used ones (the next topic) because the come with a warranty and are repaired to a high standard.
Used is a completely different story. Used products mean that it has previously been used but is now for sale. No work has been done to these devices which mean they are in their original condition. Used items are typically cheaper than refurbished but carry a warning that if the product does break, it’s usually nothing to do with the seller but the product itself. Used products can vary in quality and it’s not uncommon for people to lie about how much they have used a product before they ultimately decided to sell it. Things to look out for are products that are still in their original packaging or wrapping or items that are still sealed.
However, there are some items that can be bought used without a problem. A great example of this is cars or other vehicles, and there are entire markets dedicated to selling used vehicles. There is plenty of pre-owned inventory and you probably have local car dealerships that sell used vehicles. Used vehicles typically don’t come with the “refurbished” tag but they are repaired and maintained to a very high standard. In a sense, they’re closer to refurbished than used so you shouldn’t be put off buying a used car.
Buying a used car is a pretty big investment (much more than other items) so here’s a little extension. First, buying cars that are older will drastically reduce the price. If you can find a fantastic car that’s been sitting in a dealership for a long time, you can be sure that the price has been constantly dropping. This is because cars lose value very quickly over time as newer models are released. It’s also worth noting that you can somewhat bargain with dealerships especially if there are multiple nearby that are selling the same vehicles. Keep in mind that although the initial cost of the vehicle is lower, maintenance fees are still the same and in some cases, you might need to replace ageing parts sooner than you might expect.
Make money with them
This isn’t really a way to reduce the cost of something, but it is a fantastic way to actually reduce the overall investment you have made in something. For instance, if you bought a car then you can consider making money with your purchase by taking on a job with Uber or ferrying friends around for a price. Similarly, if you bought something like a lawnmower or another power tool, then consider listing it for rental on an online service or by lending it to friends for a small fee.
You can also make money with your purchases by simply selling them after you’re done. If you bought an iPhone 5, then why not sell it and put the money you make towards an iPhone 6? This drastically reduces the overall price of upgrading and you don’t really need multiple phones either, so why not sell your old devices for a bit of extra money? You can list them on websites such as eBay, or if you prefer to meet face to face, then Gumtree or Craigslist are better options for cash in hand.