Are you considering purchasing a second-hand electronic item? Here are some precautions to take. Follow these simple rules of thumb while buying used electronics and find a best deal for your self.
Aditya wanted to buy a digital camera but he felt a new one was too expensive. Then he came across an online shopping site that was giving him the same camera at half the price. The catch - it was a used model. Aditya was initially unsure whether to purchase the camera or not. Finally, after doing a lot of research and talking to people, he decided to purchase the camera. So far, he has not had any problems with it.
For customers on a budget, buying a used item may seem like a great deal. However, one still needs to exercise some caution with purchases. Here is a guide to minimise your chances of ending up with an unsatisfactory purchase.
Visit the stores
In India, there is a thriving second-hand market for goods, especially electronic ones. While some shops specialise only in used items, others may stock both used and new goods. To get an idea of the type of goods a store specialises in, visit the stores and look at the merchandise. In some shops, the second-hand goods may be sold as it is. This means the shop received the items from a customer and is selling it back, without making any changes.
In other shops, second-hand goods may be refurbished items. This means the used goods were taken back to the manufacturer for maintenance. Some parts may have been replaced and the item is said to be 'almost new'. Refurbished items are usually sold at a slightly lesser price than new goods.
When you visit the store, you get an idea of the type of goods available. You can also talk to salespeople and find out how many people purchase used items. You can also make enquiries with people who actively purchase second-hand goods from the store. This will give you an idea of your chances of bargaining for a good deal.
Know what to buy
It is not always a good idea to buy second-hand goods. Electronics with moving parts are prone to greater wear and tear so it is best to avoid them. For example, a multi-disc CD or DVD changer is not considered a good second-hand investment. Similarly, avoid buying used television sets or computer monitors. The picture tube tends to wear with age so be warned that your television will not deliver the best quality picture.
Items you can purchase second-hand include audio systems, amplifiers, speakers, etc. You can also buy used gaming consoles, laptops, mobile phones, etc. depending on the age of the item. Ideally, you can purchase an item that is up to one year old. Anything older is not advisable. The main risk involved in purchasing second-hand goods is that you have no idea how the previous owners have used the items. Some owners are very rough with their electronics and cause damage to them.
Check the warranty
Depending on the store, you may or may not get a warranty for second-hand products. Not checking for a warranty is a mistake most consumers make. Reputable dealers and stores will at least allow you to return the item if you do not want to keep it. The return period may vary from a week to fifteen days.
The warranty period also varies. For refurbished items, the common warranty period is 90 days. This warranty is usually offered directly by the manufacturing company. In addition, you can purchase an extended warranty for your gadget. However, ensure that the cost of the gadget and the warranty does not come to the same as buying a new appliance.
Get a good price
Pricing is another important aspect to consider. You do not want to pay too much for a genuine second-hand product. For refurbished items, the price should not be more than 80 percent of the cost of a brand new one. If it is more, then the item is not worth it. Similarly, second-hand goods should be at least half the price of a new item. If the item is being sold dirt cheap, it could be defective and the dealer is trying to cheat you. Therefore, do not make a decision based on price alone.
Buying a second-hand electronic item need not be an ordeal. By making informed decisions, you can find yourself a good bargain.
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- The Indiaparenting Team