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Things You Shouldn’t Buy Used

Posted By Jim On 05/12/2011 @ 2:38 pm In Frugal Living | 17 Comments

In Liz Weston’s latest column on MSN Money [3], she shares a list of ten things you should never buy used. Those familiar with this older Your Take on What Would You Never Buy Used? [4] will see a lot of familiar items (mattresses!)

Here’s her list:

  • Laptops
  • Car seats
  • Plasma and HD TVs
  • DVD players
  • Vacuum cleaners
  • Digital cameras, video cameras
  • Shoes
  • Mattresses
  • Wet suits
  • Helmets

There’s a basic logic on what you shouldn’t buy used and it’s straightforward.

  1. Don’t buy any used safety equipment unless it’s been thoroughly inspected by professionals – this explains why something like a car seat and a helmet is on the list.
  2. Don’t buy any extremely personal products, especially if it conforms to your body. This explains wet suits, shoes, and mattresses.
  3. Finally, don’t buy something in which you can’t confirm, visually or otherwise, that it’s hasn’t been abused. It’s hard to determine how well maintained TVs, DVD players, vacuums, and other electronic devices have been care for by their previous owners.

That said – don’t let those three rules stop you from getting a good deal if you can overcome the rule. For example, if you can get a mechanic to thoroughly inspect a used vehicle (or buy it from a dealership that offers a warranty and a certified inspection), by all means take advantage of it. The list and the rules should be viewed as a guideline, rather as an immutable law.


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[3] Liz Weston’s latest column on MSN Money: http://articles.moneycentral.msn.com/SavingandDebt/FindDealsOnline/weston-10-things-you-should-never-buy-used.aspx

[4] Your Take on What Would You Never Buy Used?: http://www.bargaineering.com/articles/your-take-what-would-you-never-buy-used.html

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