by Ken Wilssens
Should you buy a new or a used lawn mower? This question is analogous to asking yourself whether to buy a new or a used car. In other words, there are numerous factors that figure into your final decision making process. And this means that the correct answer to the question for one person will not be the same for another person.
When considering whether you should buy a new or a used lawn mower, you have to keep in mind that machines wear out over time. They become progressively less efficient, they need progressively more maintenance, and at some point they will need replacing altogether. This is why companies are allowed to deduct “depreciation” of equipment from their tax liabilities each tax season. And even these traits vary from machine to like machine based on certain variables: the quality of the original new machine; how well the owner does routine maintenance; the machine’s exposure to the elements; how often and how carefully (or not so carefully) the machine is used; and, what quality of parts and services the owner uses to fix up the machine when it does become damaged.
What this all means for you is that when you’re considering whether to buy a new or a used lawn mower, you have to keep in mind exactly why you need it and what you need it for. Do you have a large or a small lawn that needs to be kept up? Do you live in an area with short Summers and grass growing seasons, or in a rather tropical area requiring year-round lawn care? Are you buying the lawn mower for strictly personal reasons, or will you be using it much more frequently in a professional setting? Is the type of grass that grows on your property relatively short, or does it tend to grow fast and get very tall? If you’re going to be mowing a small area, not mowing that frequently, and only maintaining a personal property, then a used lawn mower might make perfect sense for you. On the other hand, bigger or more professional mowing jobs could well necessitate buying a new lawn mower.
Linked in with the above consideration is, of course, price. A used lawn mower is going to be less expensive than a new one of similar make and quality. But, a used lawn mower is far more likely to need more maintenance and more replacement parts or service done to it. A used lawn mower is less likely to be fuel efficient, and it’s probably not going to have the latest and greatest in lawn mower technology built into it.
So, what kind of quality, and longevity, in a lawn mower do you need to receive for the price that you can afford, and are willing, to pay? This is a very important consideration. As a matter of fact, without there being a price consideration there is little reason for anyone not to buy a brand new lawn mower. But, people have personal budgets and price range preferences that vary to a dramatic extent; and therefore, there is a market for used lawn mowers.
Having stated the above, there may be some “quirky” personal reasons why you might want either a new or a used lawn mower vs. the other one. If you are going out on professional mowing jobs, or if you just have a personal thing for beautiful machinery, then aesthetic appearance may well play into your final decision as you decide you have to have a new machine. But you may be a mechanical wizard who just gets a thrill out of fixing up old machines and making them run like new again; and if that’s you, then you might opt for the used lawn mower so that you can satisfy your personal hobby needs and keep your lawn nice and neat, too.
The bottom line is this: a used lawn mower will probably cost you less, up front at least, than a new lawn mower. So know what you’re willing to pay, and why you’re willing to pay it. Then the choice of mowers is pretty easy.
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