You’ve opened your laptop and… nothing. No matter what techno wizardry you pull out of your backpack, nothing seems to get it going. You can almost see and hear the cash leaving your bank account… because getting a new piece of tech is expensive.

While many will suggest going for a parental loan, some might want to go it alone, and pay their own way. Here are some alternatives for you to choose from:

Phone around, find that demo

When you walk into a computer store, you’ll likely be greeted by a display of computers on a counter. Well, those PCs don’t evaporate into thin air. They eventually get sold just like car demo models, at a significantly reduced price.

Sure, it may be slightly fingerprinted and dusty, but that’s nothing a damp cloth can’t fix. Remember to keep your ear to the ground, and maybe sign up to the shop’s newsletter. Remember when new models are released, that’s when you’ve got to swoop in.

Use your loyalty points

There are many rewards programmes out there. It shouldn’t come as a surprise that one of them could be used to purchase your new laptop. While this route may not cover the entire cost of the item, it will help reach that total price, as cashing in rewards can equal a sizable discount. Read that fine print
and take advantage.

Rent it

Often just associated with property, flats, or a house, renting can be used to finance appliances and electronics. Teljoy is the best example of this with a rent-to-own agreement which allows you to take ownership once the agreement period is over. The other benefits that make this a better option to the usual credit route are: a comprehensive maintenance plan (covering lightning & accidental damage), delivery and setup, as well as the options to
upgrade or cancel with a 30 day written notice.

Go second hand… Just choose wisely

Not all computers are created equal. If you decided to purchase a 2010 model MacBook Pro 13inch, you can upgrade it to current specs at half the price. Bear in mind that the 2010 model is currently being sold as new in most Apple stockists, just keep an eye out for when they’ll discontinue it.

This article was first published in iafrikan on 12 July 2016.