Seeking out and purchasing something like a laptop can be really daunting. Especially if you need to use this tool to complete work for your job or schoolwork, you’ll have specific requirements that need to be met. Beyond this, your hobbies like videogames and movies and television shows might increase the requirements that you have. All this being said, tech devices can be crazy expensive if we let them be. They come in so many different variations that it can seem impossible for those of us who are not technologically inclined to figure out what specs we actually need and will use and which ones we’re being upsold on.

As a side note here, if you’re shopping in order to deal with the new workplace demands of remote or virtual work, you should also consider ergonomic factors. You don’t want to be getting carpal tunnel or having sore wrists because you’re not used to working from home on a personal laptop. Take a moment to learn a little bit about how to optimize your working from home setup before you begin to shop. This will help you keep your health, comfort, and sanity in mind as you look for laptops.

Think About Buying Used Or Refurbished

One of the easiest ways to get a high-quality laptop for a good price is to buy a refurbished or used laptop. Some laptop manufacturers even offer refurbished pieces that prevent you from having to find someone who understands laptops to examine the piece before you buy it to make sure there aren’t any glaring problems. You can get an expensive model for sometimes as low as half the price (occasionally even lower price!).

In particular, if you’re shopping for used tech devices, the last week in December is a good place to start looking for used laptops because many adults and kids get new devices for new year and are seeking to sell their old ones for a little bit of money.

Consider Your Needs (And Your Wants)

Do you need to be live streaming from your device for work? Do you need a high-quality built-in microphone? Do you need a device that can handle your favorite game? Whatever you need your laptop for, take a moment to read up on the requirements for that. Experts at have compiled dozens of lists of laptops based on these specific factors, so that might be a good place to start. It’s also wise to take a look at some online reviews to see what other users have to say about the device you’re considering. You’ll likely find someone talking about using the device for the same reason you’re going to be using it.

Think About Combining An External Hard Drive And A Laptop With Less Space To Save Money

If you’re going to be using your laptop for photo editing, video editing, uploading, or other forms of artistic content creation, it might be worth your while to consider a laptop with less space and the purchasing of a harddrive.

Sometimes you can save big money this way. You can even reroute the caches on your editing program to your hard drive for easier work. This will help keep your laptop running smoothly when you want to be relaxing and having fun while making sure you have the space you need in order to save all the different versions of your work you’re going to need to save.

Take Care Of Whatever Laptop You Buy

You’d be surprised how much a little diligence can improve the performance of a less expensive laptop. Regular backups, updates, and scanning for viruses can help make sure that your laptop lives a long and healthy life. The battery life in particular can be an issue with a less expensive laptop and there are three things you can do to handle this. When you first buy the laptop, make sure to drain the battery in full before you charge it the first time. This will teach the battery to take on a full charge. Besides this, don’t have your laptop plugged in when you don’t need it to be (this keeps the battery… for lack of a better word: exercising) and make sure there are times when you shut it down completely. Don’t leave it on 24 hours, seven days a week.

With the above tips in mind, you’re well on your way to finding a budget laptop that suits your needs. Make sure to take your time and do your due diligence while shopping—you might find the same laptop available at different prices from different stores.

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