Starting a new business can be expensive, especially if you need specialist equipment to get things moving. Even if it’s just you and a laptop in your spare room, there is the cost of a business laptop and peripherals to factor in. Fortunately, there are many ways to save money on the cost of business equipment, which will help keep your cash flow nice and healthy.
Speak to Family and Friends
There are bound to be some items that you can scrounge from family and friends. Anything from a desk and chair to a printer and monitor could be sitting unwanted and unloved in someone else’s garage. Ask around and see if anyone can help you out. This is one instance when it pays to be cheeky!
Look for Used Bargains
Businesses sell off used equipment all the time. If they are relocating or downsizing to a new place of business, they might have items they no longer need. This is your opportunity to pick up equipment at a knock-down price. And, because a business is legally obligated to take care of essential equipment, anything you purchase should be in excellent working order.
Scan the local newspaper, Craig’s List, eBay, and even Facebook for great deals. Keep a close eye out for billboards and posters in your local area, too.
Negotiate Deals with Suppliers
If the business is a non-starter without specialist equipment, you won’t be able to scan Craig’s List for good deals. For example, an occupational therapist will need a consulting couch, exercise equipment, and possibly even a hydrotherapy pool. This is not an area where you want to cut corners, especially if you have spent a lot of money studying for your qualifications at the best OT schools.
Your best bet is to contact specialist suppliers and see if they will do you a good deal. The more equipment you need, the more likely it is that you can negotiate a discount. Don’t be afraid to haggle. The advertised price is rarely the price you are expected to pay.
Why buy when you can hire? When you buy equipment, it becomes an asset on your balance sheet, but if you hire it instead, it becomes a tax-deductible expense. Hiring means you can spread the cost, which is handy if you don’t have much cash flow. Hiring is often the more sensible option if you need state-of-the-art copiers and IT equipment since the supplier will typically throw in a maintenance agreement as part of the package. You are also free to upgrade at agreed intervals, so instead of putting up with old equipment, you can maximize productivity with new equipment.
The downside of renting business equipment is that it is a permanent expense on your books, as you never actually own it. However, given that most equipment depreciates fairly quickly, is this such a bad thing?
Even established businesses can save money when they invest in new equipment. There are always good deals to be found online, so research and be prepared to wait for the best possible prices.