Advertising
Advertising

Tips to Find Branded Laptops For College at a Cheap Price

Tips to Find Branded Laptops For College at a Cheap Price

These days every college student needs a laptop when in lectures, studying, or doing research. It’s a great way to take notes, making sure you have jotted down all the important information you need. This helps you prepare for future assignments and exams. Laptops are safer, too, especially with the introduction of online storage drives that protect your content in case your laptop gets stolen or lost. However, most college students struggle with finances, and often can’t afford brand name laptops with longer batteries, quality graphics, RAM, or hard drives. Because of this, college students often settle for low budget machines that end up being a headache instead of a positive addition to college life.

In 2007, I ran my own online store, and got brand name machines for a fraction of the price. Many times, I would go through the manufacturer, but a lot of times I would go hunting to find the best bargains. Even though this was in 2007, you can still utilize some of my shopping strategies today; I’ve listed them below to help you find brand name laptops for almost 50% off.

Know the Specs

Here’s the thing…

Advertising

Many college students don’t know what they want, and don’t pay attention to specifications. For you to start looking for the right bargain, you need a clear idea of what type of machine you need. Once you know the specifications, you’ll be able to compare prices from different sellers, narrowing it down to the best pricing. For example, when someone would call me about a quote, I always asked this question: What type of machine and specs are you looking for? This would allow me to narrow down my search, providing the buyer with the right information and quote.

For you to find brand name laptops for cheap, you need to know what you’re looking for. Think about the following:

  • Hard drive storage
  • Graphics card
  • RAM
  • Preloaded software
  • Keyword type
  • Brand preference
  • Wireless and/or Ethernet
  • Processor

Grab a piece of paper and write down what your minimum and maximum requirements are.

Advertising

You can also visit some review websites to find out what others are saying about the best laptops for college students. You’ll find a complete list of laptops, specs, and places where you can even order them online. Skim through each one and pay close attention to specs, brand, and price so you find one that fits your exact preference.

eBay.com

This is one of the best places to find laptops for a bargain because some people are looking for quick cash. Many times, people buy an expensive laptop, and right after running into financial crisis 90% of people usually invest in a laptop with a higher configuration than they need, so during tough times they may downgrade if necessary. For example, I can sell an expensive laptop for a lower price and still buy another one to surf the internet, send emails, etc. If you start skimming on eBay.com, you’ll find a handful of laptops for a cheaper price because people either upgraded quickly or need some extra cash.

Here’s a bonus on how to cut costs even more: Look for the “Make Offer” button because you can send in a cheaper offer than what’s listed. You might be able to save an additional $20-$50 dollars.

Advertising

Kijiji.com

The funny thing is, Kijiji.com is owned by eBay.com, and it’s more of a classified marketplace. This is for people who don’t want to wait for bidding to end or are looking to sell even quicker. Start by typing in the item number in the search bar and skim through the results. If it’s a popular model you’re looking for, then I’m sure you’ll see it listed for a fraction of the price. For example, here’s a listing for an iPhone 7 Plus 256GB which is normally $1400 CAD.

    As you can see, you’ll find some for $1200, $1080, etc. However, keep in mind you can continue to negotiate for a lower price.

    Advertising

    Refurbished (with warranty)

    I did a quick search in Google for “refurbished laptops,” and more than 10 websites showed up in the search results. If you are tight on money, then this is an option you should explore. Refurbished doesn’t mean they didn’t work and have been fixed, it just means they have been cleaned up, or were demo machines that were displayed in stores. These machines also come with a 3-month warranty, with some stores offering a warranty extension for up to one year.

    Some of the stores that showed up are in my or area, and so are worth checking out in person. Do a quick search and visit some stores close by to test out the products before purchasing and build that comfort level. Just make sure you visit a store that has been around for years, and with a solid reputation. You can read reviews on the store by doing a quick search in Google again.

    College Bursaries

    Many colleges have bursaries in place to help students with tough financial situations or special needs; however, to do this you have to apply and fill out supporting documentation to get approved. If you qualify, then the college will give you some money to purchase a laptop for school, or connect you with a store partner to provide a brand name laptop for a discounted price. Head over to your college bursary department to find out what’s available to you, and how you can start the application process.

    Final Thoughts

    As a college student, it can be very hard trying to purchase high-quality gadgets because of the financial burden they place on your life. However, we live in a time where it’s very easy to browse online and find what we’re looking for at a fraction of the price. I would suggest you start applying some of the strategies listed above to find what your looking for, and always do your research beforehand. Knowing what you want will make it easier for you to locate and choose the right item.

    Featured photo credit: journalstar.com via journalstar.com

    More by this author

    Rizvan Ullah

    Online Blogger

    A General Guide to Disputing Your Public Record In New York 4 Major Changes in Men After Turning 50 Years Old Success Habits of The Worlds Wealthiest People Strategies to Find the Best Attorney When You Need One How to Create an Effective Sales Funnel

    Trending in Money

    1 The Average Retirement Savings and How to Save Wisely 2 How to Invest for Retirement (The Smart and Stress-Free Way) 3 How to Nix Your Credit Card Debt in Less Than 3 Years 4 Top 5 Spending Tracker Apps to Manage Your Budget Smart in 2019 5 How to Use Credit Cards While Staying Out of Debt

    Read Next

    Advertising
    Advertising
    Advertising

    Last Updated on June 6, 2019

    The Average Retirement Savings and How to Save Wisely

    The Average Retirement Savings and How to Save Wisely

    Are you on track for retirement?

    If not, don’t worry, I’m not sure either. I save each month and hope for the best.

    Fortunately, I’m at an age where most people don’t save so I’m ahead of the curve.

    But, what if you aren’t in your 20s? What if you’re near retirement and are looking to gauge where you stand?

    If so, keep reading. Here’s how to prepare for retirement and save wisely during the process.

    What Does the Average American Have Saved for Retirement?

    Saving for retirement is tricky.

    Tell someone straight out of college to save $10k a year for retirement and it’ll be next to impossible.

    Make the same request to someone decades older and they’d be more likely to be able to save this amount. But, a 20-year old college student can be “financially ahead” of someone saving more than them. Why?

    Age matters in your financial journey. The younger you are, the more time you have to save and put compound interest to work. As you get older and have more saving power, you’d have less time to put compound interest to work.

    Here are the average savings Americans hold by age bracket:

    20’s – $16,000

    During this stage, most people are paying loans and moving up the corporate ladder. Your best bet during this stage is to focus on eliminating debt and increasing your income. Don’t focus only on getting a high-paying job neither.

    Advertising

    Instead, focus on learning via Podcasts, reading books, and taking specialized courses. Doing this will make you more valuable and give you more career options.

    30’s – $45,000

    At this stage, you’ve hopefully escaped your entry-level salary and work at a career you enjoy. Your earning power has increased but you now have more obligations. For example, marriage, kids, and a mortgage.

    Set a plan to pay off all your debt and focus on eliminating unnecessary expenses. Leverage financial tools like Personal Capital to ensure you’re on track for retirement.

    40’s – $63,000

    This is the stage where you’re at the prime of your career. Top financial institutions recommend you have at least 2 to 4 times your salary saved up. If you’re falling behind, start maxing out your 401K and Roth IRA accounts.

    50’s – $115,000

    During your fifties, you’re close to retirement but still, have time to save. You may be helping your kids pay college tuition and other expenses. Since you’re at the peak of your earning power, max out all your retirement accounts.

    60’s – $172,000

    By this point, you should have about eight times your salary saved up. If not, you’ll depend primarily on social security benefits averaging $1400 per month. Max out all your retirement options as much as possible before retiring.

    Ways to Save Money on a Tight Budget

    The sad reality is that most Americans aren’t saving enough for retirement.

    Even high-earning power isn’t enough to secure one’s financial future. You need to have the discipline to save for retirement while time is in your favor. Don’t wait for you to have a high salary to save, start with having a small budget.

    First, get a clear picture of where you stand. Write down a list of “needs” and “wants.” For example, Netflix and Amazon Prime are “wants” and a “cell-phone” is a need.

    Use tools like Personal Capital to analyze your spending patterns. Personal Capital allows you to add all your financial data in one place–making it a powerful option to gauge where you stand.

    Once you know all your expenses, organize them from highest to lowest expense. When you can’t cut more expenses, call your service providers to negotiate a lower price. If you’re not good at negotiating, use services like Trimm to lower your monthly expenses.

    Advertising

    How to Save Money Each Month

    By this point, you know the average amount of money you should have saved for retirement based on your age.

    But, breaking this down into monthly goals can be challenging. Here are some rule of thumbs to follow:

    Aim to contribute 10%–15% of your salary each paycheck. Review your progress each week.

    Why so often? The reality is that life gets in our way and you will have many financial setbacks. Your goal isn’t to be perfect but to get back on track instead.

    Reviewing your finances weekly lets you know where you stand with your retirement. This doesn’t have to be a long process either. All it takes is login in Personal Capital to view your net worth and check how much you have saved for retirement.

    Turn saving into a game and aim to save more each month. It will get challenging but you’ll get creative and find more ways to save.

    Top Money Saving Challenge Tips

    To prepare for your financial future and not be another statistic you need to be different.

    How?

    By adopting new habits that’ll help you become a saving machine. Here are some ways you can save more:

    Automatically Contribute Towards Retirement

    If you’re working for a company, you can automatically contribute towards your 401k. If you’re not currently contributing more than 10%, make this your goal. Contribute 1% more today and automatically increase this amount a year from now.

    Odds are that you’re not going to be negatively affected by contributing 1% more. Many times we spend our money on things we don’t need. Contributing more towards retirement is a great way to secure your financial future.

    Advertising

    Use the Right Tools to Know Where You Stand

    Once you’re contributing more towards your retirement accounts, gauge your progress. Make use of finance tracking apps to help you view the big picture of your retirement.

    When I’d first signed up for the app Personal Capital, I didn’t know I had a negative net worth. Despite saving thousands of dollars, my debt brought my net worth to the negative. Knowing this motivated me to save more and spend less.

    Now, I have a positive net worth. But, it was because I was able to view the big picture using the app. Find out what your net worth is using a finance tracking app and you may surprise yourself.

    Bring in Experts to View Your Blind Spots

    If you have too little or too much money saved, you should consider hiring financial experts.

    Why?

    You may need someone to hold you accountable to help you reach your financial goals. Or, you may need help managing your money as effective as possible.

    Regardless of the reason, getting help may help improve your financial situation.

    Before you hire an expert, find out which areas you need help the most. For example, if you’re constantly overspending, find a debt counselor. If you’re struggling with choosing the best investment options, hire a financial advisor.

    Speed up Your Retirement Contribution

    After learning how to manage your money well, the next best thing is to earn a higher income.

    You’re capped at how much you can save but not much you can earn. Even if your employer isn’t giving you a promotion, you can still take charge of your financial future. How?

    By starting a side-business.

    Advertising

    This will be something you’d work on after you’ve finished your day job. Once you start earning income from your side-business, you’ll be financially better off.

    The best part is the more work you put into your side-business,[1] the more potential it has to earn more money.

    So start a side-business in an area you’re familiar with. For example, if you enjoy writing, do freelance writing for small e-commerce businesses.

    Once you’re earning a higher income, you can contribute more towards your retirement. Don’t wait for the right opportunity to secure your financial future, create one.

    Reach Financial Freedom with Confidence

    What if you were able to retire tomorrow with no problem, all because you’d have enough money saved up and little to no debt left to pay off? How would you feel?

    My guess is that you’d feel happy and relieved.

    Most Americans are falling behind their retirement goals for many reasons. They’re not prepared, they carry bad money-habits and are thinking short-term.

    For you to retire successfully, you need to work backward and adopt better habits. Contribute more towards your 401K and focus on growing your income.

    If you do, you’ll save money and pay debt faster.

    Don’t beat yourself up if you’re behind your retirement goals. Take the first step today towards a brighter financial future. Isn’t retirement worth the hard work and sacrifice to be at peace?

    Featured photo credit: Huy Phan via unsplash.com

    Reference

    Read Next