Top 10 things you should NEVER buy new

The simple old-fashioned tactic of buying some things second-hand should not be sniffed at – especially as saving money is a top priority for many households at the moment.

And, in fact, there are some things are actually a waste of money to buy new. We’ve rounded up the top 10…

1. Cars

While a shiny new car might be appealing, the rate at which the vehicle’s value will depreciate certainly isn’t.

Your new motor can lose up to 20% of its value as soon as you drive it off the forecourt, and this can increase to a mammoth 40% within the first year.

Car dealers will frequently offer attractive packages on insurance, maintenance and warranty to entice customers; however, this is unlikely to outweigh the amount you would save by buying a second-hand car.

For advice on what to look out for when buying a used car, read Les Roberts’ article ‘Five top tips for buying a second hand car'.

2. Occasion wear

Weddings, proms and formal occasions are pricey enough to attend without having to shell out for a new outfit every time. So why not hire a knockout outfit for the big day?

Suits, ball gowns and prom dresses can often be hired from formal-wear shops, while for a designer gown without the designer price tag, online stores like wishwantwear allow you to hire a dress for a fraction of the price.

3. Musical instruments

Learning to play a musical instrument can be rewarding, but it doesn’t come cheap; the cost of a new instrument can run into hundreds of pounds. 

That’s a lot of money to spend if you are not yet sure that it's the hobby for you.

Even future musical prodigies only need a starter instrument to begin with, so pay a visit to MoneySuperMarket’s shopping channel to find the cheapest online place to buy your instrument.

4. Pets

If you have decided to add a furry friend to the family, visiting your local animal shelter or RSPCA is a much cheaper option than going to a breeder or pet shop.

Not only will you be giving an animal a good home, you will save money that you can then use to pay for pet-related costs such as food, beds, toys and insurance.


5. Books

There’s nothing like getting lost in a good book. But most of us read books no more than once.

Rather than paying to own new books you want to read, it makes sense to head to your local library or take advantage of swapping websites such as BookMooch and Read It Swap It.

Alternatively, check out charity shops and car boot sales. You can also find used copies of many titles on websites such as Amazon for a much lower price than a brand new copy.

6. Maternity wear

If you are expecting, you will know that a new arrival – exciting as it is – costs a lot of money.

And while you’re stocking up on basics and buying nursery furniture, clothes and toys, the last thing you want to do is fork out for expensive maternity clothes that you will only wear for a few months at most.

To save cash, try seeing what is available in local second-hand stores, or speak to friends who have had children and may have maternity clothes just waiting to be reused.

For a special occasion, there are also websites such as that will allow you to rent a designer maternity dress for your event.

7. CDs and video games

A CD or video game from a reputable second-hand seller will give you exactly the same enjoyment as one that was bought new, but it will cost a lot less.

You can even make money from your own used stuff, allowing you to de-clutter and make space for the games and CDs you want now.
Sites such as MusicMagpie simply require you to type in the barcode of your CD, DVD or game and it will then tell you how much it’s worth.

All you have to do is send it off (for free) and they send you cash in return.

8. Sports equipment

It’s easy to motivate yourself to try a new sport such as tennis or horse riding. Keeping it up though can prove harder – especially if you don’t enjoy it as much as you thought you would.

Shelling out for costly equipment really isn’t worth it as a result, particularly when you consider that a second-hand option in good condition will do exactly the same job.

Again, sites such as Amazon and eBay are a good place to start.

9. Baby clothes and toys

Babies grow at the speed of light so there is little point coughing up for expensive new clothes.

Second-hand outfits could save you a packet – and the good news is you know the clothes have probably only been worn for a few months before being grown out of by their original owners.

Organising a toy swap with parents who have children of similar ages is another great way to ensure your child’s toys don’t become old without splashing the cash.

10. Furniture

Buying brand new furniture is likely to make a huge dent in your bank balance, whereas opting for second-hand pieces could get you exactly what you want at a fraction of the price.

Check out newspapers, auction yards, flea markets and sites such as eBay, freegle and freecycle.

And if you have unwanted items of furniture, try putting them up for sale online – it can be a great way of being paid to have them taken away.

Please note: Any rates or deals mentioned in this article were available at the time of writing. Click on a highlighted product and apply direct

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