The price range for laptops can vary widely. However, you can grab a laptop that suits you well without spending too much. Here are some ways to get the laptop that you want without going beyond your budget range.
- Choose the type you need
Laptops come in different forms—notebooks, convertible, and 2-in-1 laptops. Standard notebooks are laptops with a lid design that doesn’t rotate like Dell’s XPS 13 and Microsoft’s Surface Laptop. This type of laptop is usually the cheapest.
Convertible laptops, on the other hand, are like the standard notebook laptop but can rotate up to 360 degrees to allow for tablet, stand, and tent modes. A good example of this is HP’s Spectre x360 and Lenovo’s ThinkPad X1 Yoga.
Finally, 2-in-1 laptops have a touchpad and keyboard that can be detached from the tablet portion. A fine example would be the Surface Pro by Microsoft.
Before you purchase a laptop, you need to determine which type works for you. If you think you really don’t need the added versatility that 2-in-1 laptops and convertible laptops offer, then you can opt for the standard notebook which is the cheapest of the three.
- Skip the extra features that aren’t necessary
Now that you have decided which kind of laptop works best for you, it is high time to decide which features you need and which ones you can live without.
If you choose a standard notebook, decide whether a touch display is really necessary. Waiving a touchscreen option will let you save a few more bucks. Also, do consider the resolution of the monitor. If you don’t plan on using it for a more specialized task, then a 1080p option is a good starting point for most people.
If you plan to use your laptop for more dedicated tasks such as multimedia editing or heavy gaming, then it may be necessary to buy a laptop with a dedicated graphics card. In addition, your RAM and processor should match your workload. For usual tasks such as web browsing or word processing, an Intel Core i5 with a 4GB or 8GB random access memory is already more than enough.
Lastly, if you don’t mind a bit of lag in the performance, you can choose a hard-disk drive. That way, you can get more storage at a relatively low price rather than choosing a solid-state drive.
- Buy a refurbished or used laptop
If you have a friend who loves to grab the latest laptop, this means that they probably have a used laptop waiting at home that is no longer being used. Try to ask that person if they are willing to part with their previously used laptop at a low rate.
Usually, there is really nothing wrong with used or refurbished laptops, though keep in mind that they won’t have the most up to date features. Try to check out local marketplaces that offer refurbished or used laptops. However, you should carefully scrutinize the store where you decide to buy. Amazon also offers a refurbished laptop; you just have to add refurb in the search bar when looking for laptops.
- Wait for Sales and Discounts
The right time to buy the laptop that you have been dreaming of is when the store offers sales or discounts. A 10 to 20% discount could already help you save a huge chunk of money. Start looking out for stores that offer sales.
The best months to buy a new laptop are in the months of November, April, and August to September. Usually, during this time, new models of laptops are released and prices of the previous models significantly drop.
You can also use a deal-tracking website to help you look for laptops that are on sale.
- Buy low specs laptop
If you really want to save a lot of time, then you can opt for a laptop with a slow or small drive. You don’t need to worry as you can upgrade the specs in most cases. However, this also depends if the laptop is upgradeable or not.
Aside from the hard drive, the RAM (Random Access Memory) is also easy to upgrade in most cases. Again, it varies with the manufacturer of the laptop.
- Buy a Previous Model
New models are released every once in a while. On the whole, new models come with some improvements to the overall features, capacity, and performance; however, most often, the improvements are only minimal. Since retailers and manufacturers want to sell these new, upgraded models, they tend to sell the previous models at a discounted price to make space for the latest model. Thus, choosing a previous model will let you save a few extra dollars while still enjoying roughly the same specs with the latest version.
Although buying a laptop can be a big investment, it doesn’t mean that you cannot save as well. Just follow our tips above and you will get the laptop that you need without spending more than what you budget for.