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- Frugal Living
Online shopping, what not to buy.
Skip it, or Ship it?
Each and everyone of us has wants and needs. Once you have set aside money in your budget, where is the best market to acquire the item that you have been dreaming of night and day? Should you go to the store, flea market, begin to frequent yard sales, classified ads, or order it online?
Carefully consider what your doing.
If you have decided that you are going to shop online first, you may want to avoid ordering some of these products.
Certain types of Clothing: This will depend on what your ordering, and common sense must prevail. Shoes: Unless you already own a pair of the particular make and model of shoe that you will be ordering, I caution against buying shoes online. Shoes are something that you should try on, and take them for a "spin" around the store. Although the size and width may be the same, there may be variations between different manufacturers. Nothing is worse then a poorly fitted pair of shoes. This also applies to many other types of clothing, don't buy it if your not 100% positive of how it will fit. Used clothes: Their is no way I would ever consider buying used clothing, especially online. You can contract lice, fleas, scabies, and bedbugs. The money that you save is not worth the risk to you and your home.
Food: With the exception of M.R.E. (meals ready to eat), vitamins/supplements and perhaps a pizza to be delivered (locally of course), I would not order food online.
Most Vehicles: I am just not brave enough to purchase a vehicle without test driving it first. There is entirely to much to go wrong with any online scenario involving a vehicle. Not to mention shipping..
Used Furniture/Bedding: This is just gross. Imagine, the photo looks great, the emails that you have received from the seller are quick, concise and polite. You place your order, and it is shipped. Upon arrival, the first thing that you notice is this stench that is all encompassing and penetrating. Your new couch, mattress, chair etc. is all stained up from various pets, has copious amounts of hair on it (that will not even come off with duct tape) and reeks of urine, cigarette smoke and Pabst Blue Ribbon. Within minutes the telephone rings, it's the neighbor calling, "is your septic tank backed up again?" This transaction has certain doom painted all over it, and should be avoided at all costs!
Large Taxidermy: What's the point of hanging it on your wall, or standing it in the corner if you didn't bag it yourself?
Organs: Do you remember years ago when a kidney showed up on ebay? That' just creepy. Moving along..
Large Appliances: Purchasing large appliances online may net some good savings, but there are a few downsides. The shipping on something that size would likely negate the money that you would save by ordering online. Also, you would have to bring it inside, take it out of the box, and then install it yourself. Most appliance stores offer these services in conjunction to purchasing the item from them, and may even haul off your old appliance.
"Mail" Order Bride/Groom: There are not only numerous moral implications to this approach to marriage, but there can be significant financial, physical and emotional risk. Why would you search the internet with the intent of "purchasing" your soul mate? Although there are success stories of these types of "matches," disaster is far more likely. Sending "Anastasia" $5,000 so that she can push her paperwork through and fly to the States to "be with you forever" sounds great. No dating and you avoid meeting the parents. The language barrier, that can be a plus, right? It's more realistic that "Boris" is on the other end of your online romance just waiting for you to be taken in by the picture of your beautiful blonde "Anastasia." Then guess what? You show up at the airport, and "Anastasia" isn't on her scheduled flight, or any flight for that matter. An even more disturbing scenario. When Anastasia arrives, it's not the woman in the photo! She's actually the "anti-Anastasia!" The polar opposite of what you were expecting. DO NOT order people online! Dating sites are fine, at least you can return them if they are not what you expect.
Do you shop online?
Still have the credit card out?
When shopping online, you need to keep one thing in mind. If it is too good to be true, it probably is. With the cost of shipping, the urgency of need (IE: toilet paper), and the fact that somethings you need to look at before buying, online shopping may not always be the best option. Use common sense, and always be cautious. Online transactions can be much more difficult to "fix" then at a brick and mortar store front.