When it comes to equipment shopping, a common question we receive is whether to buy used or new. While both options have great advantages depending on your needs, there are also a few key points to be cautious of. Check out our list of pros & cons below to decide which machine is right for you!
It’s no secret that used equipment is cheaper than new. This is the first big pro to buying used – if you’re looking for a machine to fit your needs, but don’t need anything extravagant, used is a great option. There’s also typically less depreciation when compared to new machines, because the unit is depreciating at a much lower rate than what the initial purchaser would have seen.
When it comes to resale value, buying a used piece of equipment and practicing good maintenance can – and will – pay off in the long run. Your initial investment is lower, and a well-cared for machine will yield more from the next buyer. You’ll also experience a greater selection of machines in the category you’re shopping in, and a wider range of options and specifications.
Key Question: How much would you like to spend?
Because a pre-owned piece of equipment has already been used, you’ll notice there are limited warranty options. Along with that, it’s possible that the previous owner may not have performed all the necessary maintenance, resulting in issues down the road. Combined with a potential lack of warranty, you could run into costly repairs after purchasing the machine.
Used machines will have increased wear from, well, being used. Even with top-notch maintenance and care, certain parts will wear over time, so you may find yourself investing more in the long run to replace them to keep the machine operating. Depending on the age of the machine, certain parts may become obsolete or more difficult to find, making repairs tougher to complete.
Key Question: How much repair are you comfortable with?
Buying new equipment can come with a whole bunch of perks, the biggest being better warranty. Not only is there commonly a manufacturer’s warranty, but the dealership you purchase from may also offer warranty that extends beyond the typical range. While the machine is new and, in theory, shouldn’t experience many issues, it’s always nice to know that you’re financially covered in case something goes wrong.
Equipment in today’s world is always undergoing updates and new features, so buying new ensures you get the latest and greatest in technology. Because the machine is brand new, you’ll know that you’re getting what you see – no hidden issues, prior maintenance problems, or other owner’s care to worry about. You’ll also enjoy a longer lifespan when compared to a used machine.
Key Question: Are your needs worth the cost?
The most obvious con to buying new equipment is the upfront investment. Compared to used, you’ll find yourself investing more at the time of purchase. Along with that, new machines take the biggest depreciation hit right out of the gate, so you’re return on investment may be lower when it comes time to trade or sell off. Your investment may also be off-balance depending on how much you use the machine (a.k.a. if it’s use is worth the cost).
Because new equipment is shipped directly from the factory to the dealer, you may see lower availability from time to time. This is often cyclical and depends on the season. Since your new machine most likely has more advanced technology, you may also notice the need for more frequent updates and special maintenance.
Key Question: Is resale/trade value a key component for you?
At the end of the day, deciding between used and new comes down to asking yourself a few key questions: how much am I willing to spend? Do I need the latest & greatest piece of equipment for my situation? Is this just a machine I need to complete a simple job, or am I looking to profit off its use and performance?