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Let’s face it: tech necessities make up significant chunks of our budgets. It’s often true you need to think of tech items as investments and shouldn’t skimp too much on price unless you’re willing to do the same on quality, but — luckily — there are realistic ways to lower your bill and save money.
Be Patient and Comparison Shop
Many people are so dazzled by sales papers that they rush out to buy laptops and related items without taking enough time to make sure the associated features and accessories are really worthwhile.
Rushing to buy a big-ticket tech item could mean you end up with buyer’s remorse. Some websites offer both thorough reviews and current pricing, so you can be informed efficiently and with useful information.
Don’t Shy Away From Refurbished Items
You could save a significant amount of money with a willingness to buy refurbished items. There are variations in the standards of refurbished items, so try to buy yours from a retailer that deals with them regularly. This way, you should feel relatively confident the gently used items have been stringently tested before becoming available to new buyers. Buying good refurbished items will save money, but be very picky and check the products thoroughly.
Sign Up for Sales Alerts
You may also find it’s useful to subscribe to emails and alerts from big box retailers or tech companies that you tend to buy from when prices are right. Some email services allow you to use filters so those emails go straight to designated folders, rather than cluttering up your main inbox.
Tap Into the Secondary Hardware Market
There are companies you can partner with that’ll give you deep discounts on previously owned items that are guaranteed to work like new. Such secondary hardware companies are part of a $5 billion market. In some cases, you can obtain items faster than if you had ordered directly from a manufacturer.
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Consider Skipping the Retailer’s Warranty
If you buy a tech item from an electronics retailer, you’ll probably be asked if you want to purchase an extended warranty plan. Don’t write off such coverage immediately, but think carefully before buying it and find out exactly what problems are covered under it. In many cases, there are so many restriction that the extra cost isn’t worth it.
Try to Get a Student Discount
Tech companies ordinarily offer discounts to students before new semesters begin. Although it’s easiest to take advantage of them when you’re still in college, you’re not automatically out of luck if your student days are far in the past. Sometimes all you need is a university email address to take advantage of a deal. If anyone you know has a job in academia or is currently enrolled in a class, that’s your cue to ask if they’d mind using their email to help you save money.
Research Prepaid Phone Plans
Being locked into a cell phone contract may mean you pay more than you want to for service. Plus, you might be required to have the same phone for the duration of the contract, meaning at the end of it, your model is very outdated.
With that in mind, before you blindly renew your mobile phone contract for yet another year or longer, see how much you could save through a prepaid plan. Usually, you’ll need to pay the full cost of your phone up front, but the total cost you save from month to month could make switching to a prepaid option well worth your while.
There’s no need to pay top-dollar prices for your tech items, especially if you’re willing to do research and be a careful shopper. Use the tips above for guidance, whether you’ve been tasked with buying a bunch of new tech items for your workplace or just want to have great tech items for personal use without paying too much.
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