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ComputersWhen buying a computer, you may be tempted to get an expensive high-end computer, but how much will you really use all the expensive extras? Here are some considerations that could save you money:

Should you go for the inexpensive desktop or the snazzy laptop? If you don’t require the portability of a laptop, you can save hundreds of dollars with a desktop computer.

A refurbished computer may cost significantly less. Refurbished computers sold by the manufacturer must pass their quality test and carry the same warranty.

Laptop and tablet computers are easy targets for theft, so it may be wise to invest in a service like LoJack that can help track and recover a stolen computer.

Worse than the replacement cost of the computer is the replacement cost of the photos and valuable documents on your computer. Invest in an automatic back-up system like Carbonite that will safely and securely store all your files online.

Software is another high-cost part of a computer purchase. Shop for software online at Amazon or

If you are a student or have a student in your household, you can save considerable money by taking advantage of student rates on computers and software. Apple Computer offers discounts to students and teachers and consistently advertises important education incentives and rebates. The computers may also be bundled with printers and other accessories.

Dell Computer offers student discounts directly through a participating college or universityHewlett Packard’s Academic Purchase Program is available to eligible students and teachers. Microsoft discounts for students come in the shape of mass “licensing programs” through participating colleges and universities.

Decline extended warranties. Read this article on whether extended warranties are worth it to learn why the manufacturer warranty is likely enough, especially if you can double that warranty for free.

Where to buy computers and software