How to Save Money on a New Computer for College

While it is possible to make it through four years of college without your own computer, it is much more convenient to have one. Instead of walking to the library or computer lab at two in the morning to finish your term paper, you’ll be able to stay in your dorm room (or relocate to a local 24-hour coffee shop). This is especially nice at the end of the fall semester, as it can get really cold late at night in the winter!

Hardware

Buying a computer, however, can be an expensive proposition, especially if you purchase peripherals, like a mouse or keyboard, or a warranty plan. There are a few ways that you can use to save a significant amount of money, however, and make it a more financially feasible idea.

Discount Deals

First, see if you can get a deal on a computer through your school’s bookstore. Many schools have deals with companies like Apple, Dell, and HP. You can often save a couple hundred bucks by buying through your school, making this one of the best ways for saving money on a new computer. You might be able to get these deals through your school’s website as well, so you can get your computer before classes start.

Refurbished products

You should also consider purchasing a refurbished computer. These are computers that have been used, restored, and put up for resale. You can save a great deal of money by buying a computer this way, and there are very few disadvantages to buying refurbished. Shop around online and locally, figure out what kind of computer you need (or would like), and start your search for a refurbished PC. With a little searching, you should be able to find exactly what you’re looking for at a good price.

Software

Once you have your computer, you’ll probably start looking at investing in software. This is another opportunity to save some cash.

Every student needs (or is strongly recommended to have) the Microsoft Office Suite, including Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. Almost every class that you take throughout your college career will use at least one of these programs for assignments or presentations. Office can be expensive, but you can save money by going through your school again; many schools offer Microsoft Office at greatly reduced prices. You may even be able to get a student copy for free, check out Office 365 Education for more information.

If you can’t get a good deal on Microsoft Office, you should consider Open Office, a free productivity suite that is very similar to Microsoft Office. Most files can be converted from Open Office formats directly to Microsoft formats, making it easy to transfer files between your computer and others’.

Although it can seem like a bank-breaker, it’s usually a good idea to invest in a computer. Use the above tips and you’ll find that they’re not nearly as expensive as they first appear. Spend a little time shopping and you’ll be saving money on a new computer in no time!

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