Why are refurbished products so cheap?

You might come across a great deal online and think, “that can’t be true!” or “how is it so cheap” – and you’re probably right. Items, especially electronics, when sold at a lower price often come with a catch. This is what most people assume when they look at the price of a refurbished laptop.

However, there is a major difference. 

Refurbished laptops are laptops that used to have a technical glitch that has since been restored by the manufacturer or seller. Since they’ve been used before being restored, they are priced much lower than brand-new laptops. 

A refurbished Apple laptop, for example, can be of any make and model. The trade-off that people have to make is buying an earlier version of Macbook instead of the latest one while buying a refurbished laptop.

The beauty of buying a refurbished product is that it’s taken through several quality control steps. So while you might be compromising on buying a “dated” technology, you certainly won’t be compromising on quality.

While buying a refurbished product such as a laptop from a trusted source, you get many benefits that add to the overall value of a refurbished product.

Quality

Refurbished products are 100% functional. They also undergo rigorous testing before they are released into the market to be sold again. This means that a consumer gets the best quality product at a cheaper price.

In the case of laptops, the hard drive is wiped clean, the software is re-installed and the laptop is cleaned both internally and externally. 

Aside from minor aesthetic differences, it’s difficult to identify a new laptop from a refurbished laptop. They undergo a similar quality test as a brand new laptop would have and only after they pass the test, are they released to be sold in the market. 

Warranty 

When buying from a verified seller or manufacturer, a refurbished product comes with a warranty period. This differentiates from a seller to a seller. A reseller or certified merchant can offer up to 90 days of warranty. In the case of a refurbished MacBook Pro bought through RefurbMe, it comes with an Apple warranty up to 1 year which can also be extended to 3 years using AppleCare.

Having a warranty period assigned to a refurbished product takes off the uncertainty that consumers associate buying a refurbished product with. This can only be the case when it has undergone testing and a thorough quality check. Even if something does go wrong, which can happen with a brand new product as well, if it’s covered under the warranty period replacing it or getting a refund against it is not a hassle.

Price

This is perhaps the most obvious and attractive benefit of buying a refurbished product. Most companies, like Apple, have a no-questions-asked policy when it comes to their returns and returns if done within their set time frame. Apart from damaged products, these also end up being sold as refurbished products.

The fact that it was pre-owned, means it now has to go through testing before it can be sold again and that is done at a significantly lower price. While buying a refurbished product, not only does a consumer pay less, you also get a better deal out of it.

Return Policy

Most refurbished products come with a return policy. If one changes their mind after buying and wishes to return it, they can do so. Apple too has a 14 calendar day return policy. This protects the buyers’ interest and free-will. Hence it is important to check whether or not the seller offers a return policy if you’re unsure about buying a refurbished product. 

In Conclusion

Ultimately, refurbished products are so cheap because of a single primary reason – it all has to do buyer mentality and perception. No one will pay more for a pre-owned refurbished product, and sellers and manufacturers know that.

By selling refurbished products at a lower rate, sellers cut their losses short. They also provide various benefits to refurbished products, such as the ones listed above to ensure that customers get the best possible service and product. 

Much like how a car loses a quarter of its value once driven off the lot, a refurbished product’s price difference with a new equivalent is typically much higher than the actual quality difference.