Buying used can be a great way to save money and stay on budget.
Whether you’re scouring deals on eBay or making your rounds at area garage sales, you’re bound to find a great bargain on household goods, furniture and even clothing.
However, there are certain items where buying used might not be the best idea. These items might end up costing less in the short term but thinking and buying for the long term, you can save yourself time, frustration and ultimately, money.
Here are six things that can end up costing you more in the long term when buying used:
The life of electronic devices seems to get shorter as time goes on and buying used, you may find yourself out of the loop on the latest software and important operating system updates. If you’re working with a very tight budget and you need a modern machine, consider a refurbished one that comes with some type of warranty. A computer that’s even just a year or two old is that much closer to obsolescence.
#2: Digital cameras.
Like a lot of small electronics, digital cameras and video cameras may end up having a very short life when purchased used. The pace of change being what it is, buying a used camera that’s even a mere couple of years old may prove a risky venture. This is especially true at the budget end of the digital camera options and less so for higher end digital SLRs.
#3: Vacuum cleaners.
New models of vacuum cleaners come out every few months and buying an older, used item means that you may end up having to pay for repairs and go searching for hard-to-find (therefore, expensive) replacement parts. Stick with a brand new model that comes with a warranty so that any repairs that might come up are covered.
#4: Mattresses and bedding.
Not only will you be at risk for bringing bedbugs into your home, but you may find that used mattresses, bedsheets, and pillowcases need to be replaced within a very short period of time. Protect your health and save money on the cost of these household items by seeking out deals at your local department store or buying a mattress with a warranty directly from the manufacturer.
#5: Fine jewelry.
Whether you’ve just found a great deal on a diamond ring on eBay or are looking at a jewelry collection in a consignment shop, you have limited options for verifying whether a piece of jewelry is authentic or of high quality. Buying used fine jewelry and then discovering that the item is a knock-off could be a costly mistake and generally speaking, just isn’t worth the risk.
It might seem like an eco-friendly purchase — and could help you save some money in the short term — but buying used tires may put you at risk on the road. If you end up buying tires with low tread, you will be due for a replacement set. With a little forethought, you’ll have the luxury of time and can wait for a sale rather than having to purchase new tires urgently. Whatever the case, stick with new tires and make sure you’re aware of the tire’s lifespan before you commit to the purchase.