Everyone will have to buy a computer sooner or later.  That is the nature of technology…it keeps improving and gets outdated quickly; not to mention having to buy a new computer because your old one just flat out breaks with no warning.  The chances of any one person having to buy a new computer in the next 3 years is very likely.

I have had many people ask me what kind of computer they should buy.  There is no simple answer to that question, but I have put together some guidelines to make sure you are getting all the essentials that you need to ensure your computer will last as long as possible.

Guideline #1: Get the right specifications. It is very important to get the right stuff on the inside of your computer.  This is what will make or break a good computer and determine how long the computer will last without upgrades or replacements.  I have included a list of minimal specifications for normal everyday users.  You should have at least these amounts in your computer, but the more, the merrier.

Ram:  2 GB

Hard drive:  250 GB

Processor:  2 + GHz (dual core)

Operating System:  Windows 7

CD/DVD player:  DVD+/-R/RW

Guideline #2: Pick a brand. There are so many different types of computers out there that it can get overwhelming to know which one to get.  I would recommend that before you start shopping, you talk with friends or family that have had good experiences with the customer service departments of the brand of computer they own.  This will help you narrow your search.  Personally I have had great experiences with HP laptops and Dell Desktops.

You may even want to consider local shops for your next computer.  There are many benefits to buying locally.  If you do end up having a problem, there is no shipping involved.  Just drop it off at the shop.  Upgrading parts is easier if you can talk with the ones who built your computer – they would know best.  You would also be supporting your local communities which is never a bad thing.

Guideline #3:  Be price patient. There are computer deals all the time.  My suggestion is that you wait for one of those sales.  You will not have to wait long and you can save big bucks.  Do not plan on just buying the first computer that meets your computer guidelines.  You should find one you like and then look around for a better deal.  Patient shoppers always get a better deal.

As long as you follow these buying guidelines, you can rest assured that you will get a quality computer that you can get the most out of and enjoy.  Happy Shopping!

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