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If you’re looking to purchase second-hand goods for the best price, there are several strategies you can use to find great deals. This piece will take you through some of the best tried and tested methods to help find absolute bargains and cut down the costs when you’re buying second hand goods. Our top tips include:
Limit your spending by identifying what you want to purchase, before you start shopping. This will help you focus your search and find the best deals on the specific items you need. It’s far too easy to be led into temptation or fall victim to an advertisement, and going into your second hand good search without a clear idea of what you want makes you more likely to overspend and buy things you don’t need. Narrow your search, identify what you want, what your price range is, the size you need/the specifications it needs to meet, and the condition you’re looking for.
Websites like eBay, Gumtree, Vinted, and more are fantastic places to find second-hand goods. These sites allow you to search for items in your area or from sellers around the world. The advantage of shopping online is that it increases your bargaining power. In many cases you will find the same or similar items available through multiple sellers, allowing you to create a list of them all to compare their features, and most importantly their price. This puts you in the driver’s seat as you’re not solely reliant on one person to sell you a good, you can instead use your multiple options to your advantage. Some sellers may offer discounts for you, free shipping, or throw other items in to sweeten the deal. Shopping at online marketplaces like this can be made even cheaper as you can often find an eBay discount code, or coupon codes for these stores.
Check out Facebook groups that are focused on buying and selling second hand items. You may be able to pick out some good deals on items being sold by those in the community. It’s important to remember that Facebook groups are less secure and that you need to have your wits about you when it comes to buying. You won’t be provided the same level of buyer protection as sites such as eBay, however the positive aspect is that these communities help to stay on top of that. You can typically find enthusiasts in these groups who will keep an eye out for scams or illegitimate items. You can also post photos and ask these enthusiasts or moderators to provide legitimacy checks to make sure you’re buying the right items.
Check your local newspaper and local online community groups for car boot sales in your area. These events can be a great way to find second-hand goods at a low price. Quite often you’ll find an eclectic range of items from all over, with sellers who don’t know the true value of the items. Possibly they’re selling things cluttering their home or selling things on the behalf of family or friends. Use showrooming whilst at these car boot sales. Find the items you like, then use showrooming to identify if it’s a good price.
Showrooming is the practice of visiting brick and mortar stores and searching online to find the same item for less elsewhere. Showrooming will ensure that you get a good price, and you can use this to compare the prices that are being charged at car boot sales.
Don’t be afraid to negotiate with sellers. Many people are willing to lower their prices if they know that you’re interested in purchasing their items. The benefits of buying with private sellers is that they can control the price. Unlike your typical employee in a brick and mortar store, these sellers can offer discounts to help push through a sale. Use this to your advantage to drive the price down, consider the demand for the item, and how difficult you think it is for that seller to sell it. Sometimes sellers will drop the price for something out of convenience, so it’s important you gauge these factors when negotiating.
Another way to reduce the price is to scrutinise the condition of it. Make sure to inspect the item thoroughly before purchasing, by checking for any damage or wear and tear that could affect its value. Compare the price of new items to the used versions to try and figure out the best priced item available. See if the seller will offer reductions for marks, scratches, and stains on items. Maybe if an electrical item is missing the box or a component that would come with a newly sealed item, try to pick those faults to knock the price down.
When you’re purchasing items online, make sure to factor in the cost of shipping when comparing prices. Some sellers offer free shipping, while others may charge a fee. One of the oldest tricks in the book when it comes to online marketplaces is to advertise for a low fee to catch attention, then add an extortionate delivery fee to bring the price up to market value. Don’t fall victim to this, one of the biggest reasons people abandon their cart is due to large shipping fees. Negotiate with sellers to arrange free shipping or reduced shipping to get a better price.
We know it’s not easy but finding the best deals on second-hand goods takes time and patience. Keep checking online marketplaces and local events to find the best deals. The internet allows us to find what we want in a few clicks, meaning it’s never the last chance to buy something. The market value of items fluctuates with its demand, and that’s why it is important not to jump at things without making sure it’s the right item and the right price. There will always be another opportunity to find what you’re looking for, and being patient can reap huge rewards.
In summary, there are several strategies you can use to find great deals on second-hand goods. By using online marketplaces, local Facebook groups, attending car boot sales, negotiating, checking the condition of the item, factoring in the cost of shipping, and being patient, you can save money while purchasing the items you need. Take a look around at our other handy money saving tips and guides to make sure you don’t overspend.
Disclaimer: MoneyMagpie is not a licensed financial advisor and therefore information found here including opinions, commentary, suggestions or strategies are for informational, entertainment or educational purposes only. This should not be considered as financial advice. Anyone thinking of investing should conduct their own due diligence.