I started this website at the end of August, 2010 with my wife’s old Dell Laptop. She got her new MacBook Pro and I inherited the pink-skinned laptop that doesn’t turn on without a power cord… I called it my pink chick repellent. It was alright though; I’m a married man, so a little chick repellent doesn’t hurt. I even displayed that computer at the library when Dar was in class. It did the job and I was able to do what I loved: updating my website in order to help others with their life and personal finances.
Recently though, something sad happened, I was a bit lax in updating the anti-virus protection. Yep, the pink chick repeller got a virus. I did my best to clear it off, but it had already spread pretty deep. It currently lies in our living room, dead. “How am I updating my website?” you might ask. On my new gently used R51 Thinkpad! Yes, yes, this laptop is a relic, but you know what? The sole purpose of this laptop is to update a website, not to download tunes or to play online games. It performs the necessary task at hand.
Initially, I searched craigslist.org for used laptops and they were surprisingly expensive. Apparently laptops are always in demand, but there are always a few deals out there. I saw this laptop online for $125. It was in mint condition and had a solid processor, 1GB of RAM, and a 40GB hard-drive. These specs were at the low end of what I was looking for, but it had one major bonus: Microsoft Office 2007. This is valued at $125 by itself! Plus, it comes in very handy when I need to make charts and graphs for my articles. After about 10 minutes of negotiations with the seller, I walked out with the laptop in my hand and was only $100 lighter.
When I first saw the high prices of used laptops online, I was nearly discouraged enough to just go out and buy a new one with all the bells and whistles, but I had two problems with that. I did not have the cash to pay for the new laptop, and I knew that there would be many charges beyond the advertised price. Best Buy might advertise a laptop for $449, but you still have to purchase the Microsoft Office software, which will often run you at least an extra $100. My current laptop might look like a big black box, but I love it! I was able to pay cash for it, plus it does everything that I need it to do.
If you have a similar decision to make, don’t worry about what other people might think. That’s how we all get ourselves into trouble. In fact, that’s the reason why most people are in debt in the first place; they wanted to look like a stud in front of their peers. I’d rather be a stud in my own eyes. It helps me walk around with a smile more often.
My name is Derek, and I have my Bachelors Degree in Finance from Grand Valley State University. After graduation, I was not able to find a job that fully utilized my degree, but I still had a passion for Finance! So, I decided to focus my passion in the stock market. I studied Cash Flows, Balance Sheets, and Income Statements, put some money into the market and saw a good return on my investment. As satisfying as this was, I still felt that something was missing. I have a passion for Finance, but I also have a passion for people. If you have a willingness to learn, I will continue to teach.