Friday, February 17, 2012

Buying Used - Why it makes cents.

A lot of people ask us the best way to save money. Hands down our biggest way to save money is trying very hard not to buy anything new. Now, of course we have buy food and such new. But most people only buy used when it comes to clothes or a car. We buy used in almost every category. Used appliances. Used furniture. Used clothing. Used tires. Used toys. Used electronics. Used auto parts. Used ,second hand, pre-loved...whatever you want to call it, it makes sense. Or cents if you think about it.

Now, let me start off by saying if you are one of those people who thinks its always better to buy new... thank you. Because of that attitude there is always a plethora of used items for me. Bless you. No sarcasm there. Because without consumers, there is nothing for those who wish to buy used.

If your one of those people who maybe on the fence, this post is for you. When you buy an item new, regardless of what it is, it loses it value the moment you purchase it. Don't believe me? Buy a new home gym, take it home, use it once or not at all and then try to sell it a month later on Craigslist. You can expect to take a 30% loss.  If your lucky. More in the range of up to 50%. In life this is called depreciation. Very little in life grows from its purchase price with the exception of real estate. And in today's market I wouldn't be so sure about that.

When I buy your used Crock-pot at your sale for $5, I am avoiding that depreciation. You have already took the hit for it. I get the item in very usable condition. And guess what? When it dies on me, even if heaven forbid its 2 years down the road, I lost less than you did. I paid $5 and it lasted me 2 years. $2.50 a year.You had it for 3 years and paid $30 for it. $10 a year. See my point?

I will no doubt get responses about how unsafe it is to buy used. In all my years of buying the items above used I have never had an issue. I am sure your friends Aunt's cousin may have. But the point is it is very slim. Buying new does not guarantee no problems. When I have a spare year I will post my saga of why I will never own anything Bissell ever again. Not even used.

Letting other people pay depreciation is how I keep more money to myself. As always, use your own comfort level. But typically I find when someone wants to save money and get out of debt, their comfort level changes. So, don't be afraid to branch out of your comfort level. Do your research and don't buy new or used blindly. Another day I will talk about what is worth buying new in our home. Also another post for another day is how buying used is a perfect way to recycle!

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