They are great because they do the research for you. Anyone looking for a cheap gaming laptop under $500 may discover a web page featuring a number of top recommendations. There may be discussions on such things as graphics, processing power, and lists of pros and cons too. The advantage of review sites is that the professionals (or even customers) are able to assess the products in detail. People can ensure they get not just the cheapest deal, but the one with the most features.
2. Consider Buying And Selling Sites
eBay is an internet auction site. People can bid for specific items, and in some scenarios, there is also a ‘buy now’ button too. People who are prepared to consider new or used technological equipment will find both here. It may be necessary for the buyer to create a PayPal account for payments if they don’t already have one.
The Freecycle Network is Arizona-registered as a non-profit organization. In the United Kingdom, it is a charity. If someone is looking for a used item they may find it here. The whole goal of the site is to reduce landfill by finding a new home for unwanted items.
These are just two examples, but there are many more – including the Facebook Marketplace which helps people trade with others in their area.
3. Have A Sense Of Timing
Someone may see the product they want on Amazon and buy it immediately. It’s worth bearing in mind such things as their Black Friday Deals. Some items are discounted every few months, in which case patience may pay off.
The same principle applies to sales in shops. Why buy a new microwave just before Christmas when the January sales are imminent?
4. Lease The Equipment
It must be said that leasing things is a more costly long term than paying for them outright. Having said that, it might be the difference between someone having something or not.
A person’s cash flow situation may cope with paying monthly repayments, but not with an outright sale. If someone doesn’t obtain the equipment until they can afford to pay the full price, they may have to wait a while. By this time the price may have increased too.
People who lease technical equipment don’t own it, although they may have that option later. What they do benefit from is having no initial cash outlay, and being able to gain tax relief on the repayments.
5. Buy Second Hand
If someone is happy to buy a used item they may save a fair amount of money. The product may function and last as well as a new one, too. We’ve already mentioned buying and selling sites online. Amazon also sells used items, with their quality clarified (e.g. ‘as new’). There’s also such places as charity shops to consider or adverts in local newspapers.
Anyone who buys electronic equipment secondhand needs to understand there is a safety risk unless it has been tested beforehand in a shop. It is for this reason that some charity shops will not accept anything they cannot test. It would be well worth checking the plug and leads, etc., before use, and asking anyone who’d be able to check the item more. If you are buying medical equipment, you need a trusted company. For instance, if you purchase a refurbished ct scanner, the company will inspect it, fix any issues it has, install it, and could even offer training and support services.
6. Negotiate A Discount
First of all, be aware of any discounts you are already entitled to. Student cardholders may be eligible for some price reductions. Teachers and other workers may have access to professional discounts too.
People generally walk into shops and assume the prices are fixed. If someone is a regular customer or is making a bulk purchase, there may be space for negotiation. If you don’t ask, you don’t get it!
It is true that we get what we pay for: more expensive goods are generally made of better quality. Having said that, there are ways we can save money. The internet is packed full of helpful advice and information, and there are many avenues we can explore. When money is saved, it’s a great feeling. Perhaps the surplus funds can be used for our next purchase!
Samantha Acuna is a writer based in San Francisco, CA. Her work has been featured in The Huffington Post, Entrepreneur.com, and Yahoo Small Business.