15 things you're better off buying used

Mum bike kidShutterstockSave money on a used bike — and on your commute to work.

Some things are worth dishing out more cash for, and can pay for themselves in a short amount of time.

But you could save hundreds, or thousands, of dollars if you forego the tempting, new and shiny edition for its just-as-durable used version.

Here are 15 things to consider buying secondhand:

Mandi Woodruff contributed to an earlier version of this article.

Bicycles

Like cars, new models of bicycles come out every season, which means you're likely to see older models pop up on sites for a fraction of the cost during colder seasons.

If prices at your local bike shop aren't appealing, try Craigslist or eBay.

Think about commuting to work on your new ride and watch your savings grow even more.

Before you buy online, be sure to use due diligence. If an ad seems fishy or uses a stock image, the bike might have been stolen.

Toys for your tots

Do your budget a favour and skip Toys R Us for these more affordable used options: Craigslist, eBay, Swap.com, or your neighbourhood yard sales. Each is a gold mine when it comes to finding cheap, but still usable cast-off toys.

Chances are your 5-year-old won't remember whether the Tonka truck you bought him for Christmas was used or not when he's pushing 30.

Wedding attire

Remember, no wedding guest or bridesmaid should pay full-price for a gown she'll only wear once. What you can't rent from sites like Renttherunway.com or Bagborrowsteal.com, check out consignment shops or thrifts stores for gently used formal wear.

For brides-to-be on a budget, check out the virtual racks on Recycledbride.com to score discount gowns and accessories that no one will ever guess were used.

Lucky fellas might score a tux for a fancy cocktail dinner and still be able to afford tailoring with the cash they saved by buying used. You can re-sell the garments you only wear once -- just be kind to them so you'll get as much of their value back as possible.

Entertainment

If you're on the prowl for fresh DVDs, Blu-Rays, video games, or music, there's no reason to buy them full price.

eBay, Amazon.com and swap sites like Swap.com are among the best places to score deals on entertainment.

Electronics like game consoles and laptops are another story. You can certainly find excellent bargains by purchasing them secondhand online, but you likely won't be able to get a warranty with them.

The roof over your head

It might be a better idea to look for an older home rather than browsing new developments.

Bankrate.com says existing homes are usually less expensive per square foot because of rising land costs, so your money will go further.

You're also likely to enjoy traditional features of older homes, and an established neighbourhood, if you buy an existing house.

Jewels

Before you head to over to Tiffany's, do your bank account a solid and consider this slightly less whimsical option: the pawn shop.

Trust us, not all those shelves are filled with broken appliances and handguns of questionable origins. The fact is that jewellery -- especially diamonds -- has a terribly low resale value.

That's great news for the clever consumer who hits up estate sales or other resellers to find new bling.

Designer threads

If you're a girl in your 20s and you've never hosted or been to a clothing swap night with your friends, you are seriously missing out. Swaps are a great way to score designer gear you'd never be able to afford yourself.

If you're unimpressed by your buddies' fashion sense, then there are plenty of vintage or online swap sites like Bag, Borrow or Steal to quench your thirst for threads. The same sites and apps that help you earn money by selling your used clothing also sell these goods for a discounted price.

Scout shops first, either by checking out their reviews on Yelp or stopping by in person. If they seem unclean or have a reputation for poor quality clothing, you're probably better off avoiding them.

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