The Ultimate Reason Why You Should Buy Used Instead of New

Always buying new? Instead you should buy used items! Here is why. #frugalliving #savemoney #frugal #personalfinance

It is always tempting to buy the newest and latest. It makes total sense, we are constantly bombarded with fancy marketing that is scientifically engineered to entice us to go out and purchase the newest cars, electronics, clothes, bikes, furniture, and so on.

Frankly, the only thing in my house I would not buy second-hand is a mattress. Well, I guess there are other obvious things such as a toothbrush, bike shorts, and a toilet seat.

So Why Buy Used Instead of New?

The answer is pretty obvious here, to save money!

Here is an example of the money you can save by buying used.

A few years ago, my wife and I moved to Colorado with only one car. We needed another one as our jobs were too far apart to carpool. When making a big purchase like this I wanted to buy a brand that lasts a long time. This left us with either Toyota or Honda (personal preferences). As you might know, both brands are not cheap.

To be able to make the purchase happen, we bought a Toyota that just came off of two-year lease with only 40,000 miles on it. This saved us $10,000 compared to if we bought brand new!

I have been able to save big chunks of cash like this because I purchased second-hand time and time again. I bought my camera used, saved me $800. My computer monitor was a display model, saved me $100. Our washer and dryer were used, saved us $1,000.

Instead of buying new, we should be breaking the habits of buying new and buy used instead. If the previous owner took care of them, a lot of the items listed above can easily last many more years resulting in major savings for your checking account.

Where to Buy Used?

There are plenty of resources to help you buy second-hand. These range from actual physical stores to online stores to mobile applications.

Physical Stores

  • Target, Best Buy, Home Depot, and so on: Yes, all of these are places you would typically buy first-hand but you can find items that were returned by people who just did not want the item. The items are perfectly good and are usually marked down 10%.
  • Goodwill: A great place to find used clothes, furniture, and other small household items.
  • ReStore: I love Habitat for Humanity ReStore. You can find used cabinets, tools, furniture, flooring, and so on. Not all of the items are second-hand but you get the second-hand pricing! In these cases, the items were donated brand new.

Online

  • Craigslist: If you do not know what Craigslist is, you have been living under a rock. But just in case that is you, Craigslist allows you to buy used items directly from other people in your city. They post, you contact, then go meet at a neutral meeting area and make the purchase. You can even sell the stuff you do not want anymore on the site.
  • eBay: Buy basically anything you wish from anyone around the world. Just like Craigslist, you can also sell unwanted items on the site.
  • Nextdoor: Very similar to Craigslist but a little more personable.

Mobile Apps

  • Letgo: Letgo also has an online web application as well but mainly markets its mobile application. The application is basically Craigslist but updated and more modern. Personally, I have never used this service but I have heard it is a nice service.

Conclusion

As we have learned, we should buy used instead of new (unless you are buying underwear) to help purchase needed items. This will help us buy those items while not breaking the bank.

If you are looking to increase your monthly income to help purchase necessities you should check out our Ways to Earn More Money page. Here Andrew and I personally review as many different ways to earn extra money as we can to help you decide if it is right for you.

6 replies
  1. DNN
    DNN says:

    Good morning,

    Glad to see a new post. I’m going to double back in a New Yawk minute and dive into valuable feedback on your post. This is one topic I have alot to say on because I myself got sick and tired of book buyback merchants ripping me off. Thanks for posting this and will be back later today. 🙂

  2. Mike H.
    Mike H. says:

    An important corollary to this is: “you must be able to discern quality from junk.” Most people who get rid of stuff are doing so for one of three reasons: 1) They’re moving up in the world, 2) They’ve taken a vow of poverty and are ridding themselves of worldly possessions before they move to the monastery, or 3) It doesn’t work terribly well any more and it’s time to replace it. Which of these do you think is most common?

    Buying used can definitely save you money, but it will cost you time and hassle. If you’re side-gigging a lot, or just really lazy like me, time and hassle might tip the scale back toward “at least if I buy new I know it’ll work flawlessly for a while.” Just my two cents.

  3. Wallet Squirrel
    Wallet Squirrel says:

    Hi Mike,

    That makes total sense in some cases. Buying used does not always make sense. Like you mentioned, you do need to weigh the pros/cons. We bought our TV brand new because the deal was the best I had seen on a TV with the technology we wanted so it made sense to go that route.

    Thanks for the great point!

    – Adam

  4. DNN
    DNN says:

    Top of the morning gentlemen,

    Stopping by to show my support and check up on your blog. I have something to do this morning but I should be able to double back later today and give you a nice comment on this post. It’s ironic you wrote this blog because I’m actually selling a few books right now on history in human resources. And I have more books that I’m about to upload online for sale momentarily. Thank you for posting this. 🙂

  5. DNN
    DNN says:

    Good morning gentlemen,

    I’ve been meaning to catch up with you with your message. I got it the other day and just wanted to let you know that I’m on the road right now passing through Pennsylvania and will touch base with you momentarily. Thank you for reaching out and acknowledging that I’m a huge supporter of your blog. 🙂

  6. valerie
    valerie says:

    i buy a lot of things used, mostly my camera equipment because most of it is gently used as most photographers have GAS (gear acquired syndrome) and are always upgrading to the newest gear. when they sell it, that’s when i reap the benefits of their used stuff. i’ve bought 1 new car and paid it off in three years, before that i bought used.

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