Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Saving money in these hard times

I'm sure there are many of us who are tightening our belts, economically speaking, and trying to spend less in these difficult times.

One way to save a whole lot of money is to look at refurbished equipment, rather than brand-new. I've done this for years, and on average find that I spend less than half the price of new equipment to buy something just as good. After all, a factory-refurbished item has been through the manufacturer's test procedures twice, not just once. It's more likely to be trouble-free than a new item!

Case in point: a camera I've just bought. I gave my old point-and-shoot to a friend who needed it more than I did at that time, and I needed to replace it. I wanted something extremely simple and very compact, that I could carry anywhere, and that wouldn't cause financial heartburn if it got lost or damaged. I narrowed down my search until I decided that the Nikon Coolpix L15 was what I wanted.

I started to compare prices. New, it's in the $230-$250 range (for example, on Amazon): but refurbished, it's available with precisely the same accessories for $69.95 from retailers such as Adorama, B&H Photo, etc. That's three-tenths of the price of a new unit on Amazon! Putting it another way, I can buy three refurbished units, and still save money, compared to buying one new one! The refurbished unit only has a ninety-day warranty, but an extended two-year warranty from Nikon USA costs a mere $12.95, if you want that peace of mind.

Electronics is a particularly viable field for such shopping, with everything from computers to cameras available in refurbished form. There are other areas too. Just a thought - if you want to save money, have a look at what's available in refurbished form. You might be surprised.



Mongo said...

My son works in a small electronics repair capacity. He tells me the majority of returned products are because the consumer either could/would not read the instructions, or simply changed their mind about the purchase.

It's these returned products that make up most of the 'factory refurbished' items. As he explains... they simply test them, rebox them, and throw an extra sticker on the box.

Good financial sense to buy them, I agree with you. Now, if they had an refurb Kindles.... that would be something :-)

The Safety Officer said...

Does this camera take good close up photos? I need something to take close pictures of firearms actions, serial numbers, etc.

Peter said...

Safety Officer: Yes, it has an excellent macro mode, perfect for such things as serial numbers. If you look at the pictures of the revolver I posted yesterday, those were taken with the L15, and I also have some in macro mode showing the rollmarks. If you e-mail me (see my blog profile) and send me your e-mail address, I can send you a couple of those as examples.