If you enjoy bargain-hunting at second-hand stores, flea markets, and yard sales, you will likely find great deals on many useful items that are hard to resist. There are, however, some things that you should steer clear of and that are quite simply better and safer to buy new.
Six things that are better off bought new are:
1. Medical equipment. If you are in the market for a wheelchair, walker, or other types of medical equipment, buy new. Often-times, these items can be purchased at medical supply stores and defrayed by existing insurance; buying these second-hand does not ensure the safety, stability, or longevity of the used item. Your health and well-being is worth more than that. You should instead rely on services like Lincoln Mobility for these items.
2. A mattress. Mattresses are another thing that you deserve to buy brand-new. A mattress typically only has an eight-year lifespan, so many of the mattresses found in second-hand venues are going to be nearing the end of their useful life and won't provide the support that your body needs. Plus, buying used mattresses opens your home up to the possibility of bed-bugs.
3. Cosmetic or hygiene products. If you see opened cosmetics or hygiene items at a sale, pass them by. The fact that they are opened means that they could be festering with bacteria, and they have the potential of transmitting illness or infection if used. Unless the package is factory-sealed, don't risk it to save a few bucks.
4. Pet gear. Another thing to be wary of at second-hand stores and the like are pet supplies, such as pet beds, toys, or climbers. There are infectious- even fatal- diseases that can be passed from the previous owner's pet to the buyer's dog or cat. Often, if someone loses a beloved pet, they will sell-off their pet's goods which could contain these contagions; avoid them like the plague.
5. Firearms. Buying firearms from anyone other than a licensed gun dealer or vendor is risky, and could even be illegal in many regions. Plus, you are not going to know if the guns work properly and safely unless it is examined by an expert and fired. Since these types of goods are typically expensive to buy, a great deal could be a case of something that is too good to be true; save your money.
Try to avoid these five things when shopping for deals are area thrift stores, flea markets, and yard sales. While you may find some alluring deals on these goods, they are not a prudent investment and, in some cases, can be unsafe to use.