When it comes to shopping for a bargain, I will be the first person who stands-up proudly for the concept (the hubby being right there next to me)! Yes, half of the stuff (or more) in our 2 bedroom apartment was either passed down, a garage sale find, or Craigslist purchased, some things DO need to be bought new. Here are some items you may want to consider going the store route versus the friend’s apartment purge route (unless you trust your friend a BUNCH):
When it comes to your safety, you should never shop secondhand. Minor scratches or dings in helmets that you might be unable to spot right away can cause their safety rating to fall.
Cribs can stand a lot of abuse from cranky toddlers, but you want to make sure your children aren’t put in danger by a potentially damaged bed. According to The New York Times, issues with unsafe cribs led to 150 deaths between 2007 and 2010.
Any small defect in a secondhand laptop will only get exacerbated over time. You also don’t have the luxury of a warranty or customer service guarantee if you don’t buy it new yourself.
Many websites advise against buying shoes used because they’ve probably already been formed to the foot of the person who wore them before you. Especially with running shoes, this could lead to discomfort or injuries.
Non-stick cookware especially is something you want to invest in on your own. The coatings break down over time, making them more difficult to clean and potentially releasing harmful chemicals.
Hats can be difficult to clean, and that means the previous owner’s lice and hair could still be lurking inside. Purchase your next baseball cap somewhere other than a garage sale.
Blenders require their blades to be super sharp to be functioning at their best. If you buy one secondhand, it might take longer for the duller parts to puree the berries and bananas going into your smoothie.
Bed bug risk aside, odors in upholstered furniture can be difficult to get out, no matter how much Febreze you use. If you buy furniture used, it might be best to reupholster it yourself.
A tiny scratch on a used lens could wreck your next photo shoot. Lenses are a big investment, so it’s probably wise to spend the money to ensure you’re buying a quality product.
Mattresses and pillows
Never buy these — or bedding or pillowcases — secondhand. It’s not worth it when you consider the risk of bedbugs and other molds or critters that could be lurking inside.
Besides the hygiene issues that come with a secondhand swimsuit, these garments tend to wear out very quickly. Your bikini won’t do a good job covering you up if it starts to get saggy the first time it’s hit by a wave.
Wet suits need to fit well and they often wear out over time, making them less likely to keep you warm underwater. The suits aren’t cheap, but don’t risk getting chilly on your next scuba trip with a used one.
Vacuums are one of the most-used appliances and they don’t last forever. If you need something that still has the suction power to clean the dust around your whole house, it might be best to buy a new one yourself.
Child car seats
Safety is a major player here, too. In the event of a crash, you don’t want a potentially damaged car seat to put your child in danger.
Buying tires used is never a good idea, since the tread could be worn and it may put your safety in danger. Tires wear out as they age, and it’s best to buy them straight from the store.
Software usually only has codes to be used on a limited number of computers, and there’s a chance you could get ripped off if you buy a used copy. It’s best to buy straight from the manufacturer to make sure you get a working version.
This also applies to video cameras. Since you’ll be using this to capture important life moments, you want to make sure you’re not getting a faulty product.