If you’re a card-carrying technophile, you’ve probably spent a shocking amount of money on the latest gadgets and gizmos over the years.
Being a tech addict is hardly a cheap hobby after all, but that doesn’t mean that you have to resign yourself to always paying top dollar for the latest upgrade or the newest piece of kit than you just have to possess; there are several things you can do to cut corners and save money on the latest must-haves. Here are some of them:
Put in Some Research Time
When the time comes for you to purchase a new piece of technology, perhaps because your cell phone has given up the ghost or you’re just not getting any enjoyment out of your old console anymore, if you want to save money, it always pays to do your research first. If you don’t take the time to find out exactly what is available and how much every option costs, you could so easily end up paying way over the odds for the same sort of specs you require than is really necessary, which would be foolish to say the least.
It doesn’t matter whether you’re buying a new phone, laptop, streaming box or keyboard, there are countless options available to you, and you should check as many of them out as possible before you throw your money away needlessly.
Don’t be Suckered into Endless Upgrades
It sometimes seems like as soon as you’ve bought the latest iPhone or invested in the newest games console, the very same company is launching a new version that they claim is even better than the one they’ve only just convinced you to buy. Although sometimes the new upgrade really will be noticeably better than the last one, most of the time, these tech companies are overselling things a bit, and the latest upgrade is only slightly different from the one you’ve just about.
That’s why you shouldn’t let yourself get suckered into upgrading every time. If you wait a while, not only will the price drop, sometimes significantly, but you might find that the company brings out yet another model, which actually is significantly better and much more worth the upgrade, in the meantime.
Leave the extended Warranty Behind
Every time you buy a piece of kit, no matter how much or little it cost, chances are the salesperson will have asked you if you would like an extended warranty. They’ll have done their best to convince you that purchasing some extra protection is a good idea, and you might agree that having some insurance will save you money in the long-term should you lose or break your product. However, this is not always the case, Unless you’re particularly accident prone, chances are, as a technophile, you will take really good care of your stuff, and that means you probably won’t be needing to make use of that warranty.
Anyway, if you have a great credit card, chances are you will get an extended warranty for your gadgets just by using it to purchase them, and if you have home insurance, your gadgets may also be covered under that. If they’re not and you really do think you need the extra protection, you can probably find it cheaper elsewhere than the price the seller is offering you.
Sell Your Old Tech
An obvious way to save money on your new tech is by selling the old stuff that you’ll no longer need. A lot of tech addicts hold on to their old tech even when they buy a new gadget that will more than adequately replace it, but I’ll always sell my MacBook or trade in my Google phone before buying the next one because it means I won’t have to find quite as much money for the new gadget,. It makes sense, and it stops the place getting cluttered up with unnecessary, obsolete tech Unless you’re running some kind of tech museum. You should really do the same.
Do You Really Need a Contract?
Most of us now acquire new phones and tablets by taking out a contract because let’s face it, it seems more affordable to pay a monthly fee which not only pays for the tech, but also out use of it, each month than it does to pay hundreds of dollars upfront for the item we desire. However, contracts can be pretty deceiving, and if you have the cash to buy your tech outright, even taking into account the cost of data and minutes, you could save hundreds, even a thousand dollars or more by skipping the contract altogether.
Hack a Less Expensive Version
One of the best things about tech is that it is very adaptable. With just a little knowledge, which can easily be acquired online, it is possible to take a relatively inexpensive piece of kit and hack it so that it does everything that more expensive models can do, just as well. Once you learn how to overclock and route your technology, you need never pay more than the minimum for anything again, unless you really want to. Seriously, it’s so worth taking the time to learn how to do this!
Don’t Fall into the Price = Quality Trap
So many people, even those who claim to be knowledgeable when it comes to technology, fall into the trap of assuming that the more expensive a piece of technology is and the bigger the brand name it features, the better it will perform. However, anyone who’s ever been foolish enough to buy a gold-plated HDMI cable for $80 or more will know that they perform no better than a cable you can buy at the dollar store!
There is so much snake oil and so many false claims in the tech industry that you need to really have your wits about you and actually look closely at the specs and the reviews people make about tech to ensure that you aren’t being ripped off and paying more than necessary for something that is no better than the myriad cheaper options available.
Don’t Dismiss Refurbished Tech
If you always buy your tech brand new, you are undoubtedly missing out on many bargains because, most big tech companies, including Apple, often sell factory refurbished products at a discount. These products are pretty much always indistinguishable from the brand new product that you would pick up in the store, and what’s more, they usually come with the same warranties and guarantees too, so you have nothing to lose and everything to gain by checking if the company are selling a refurbished gadget before you go ahead and pay the full price for one. I mean, you could save hundreds by doing this!
Of course, you could save even more money by buying used tech from eBay, Craigslist, thrift stores or even friends and family. If you’re looking for older tech that doesn’t need to be in perfect condition, this is an option definitely worth considering. It’s an especially good option for buying console games – just be sure to check they work first!
See if You’re Eligible for a Discount
A lot of tech companies also offer various discounts, which can be worth a few bucks or a few hundred bucks, if you happen to fit certain criteria. For example, if you’re a student or you work for a company that is connected to a certain provider, you could earn a discount just for being in the right place at the right time.
Alternatively, you could scour sites like RetailMeNot to see if there are any coupons or discount codes for the piece of tech you’re interested in. These tend to only be for a few bucks, but when you’re a tech addict, every penny counts, right?
Wait for the Optimum Time
I know this can be hard for the average tech addict to do, but one of the absolutely best ways to save money in the cost of tech is to wait for the optimum time to buy. Almost every gadget and gizmo you may be interested in buying will fluctuate in price depending on the time of year, so it’s worth working out when your next piece of tech is likely to be discounted and waiting until then, so you can get it at the lowest price. Patience is a virtue, and you will be rewarded if you want just sit back and wait for a while.
Saving money in tech, may not always be easy and it might take a little more effort (and patience) than simply rocking up to the store on launch day and handing over your money but it is very possible, and it is a very good idea to at least try to save. Think about it, if you use some of these tips to save money on the tech you buy, then you will have lots of money leftover to buy even more gizmos and gadgets, and that will make you a very happy bunny, I’m sure!