Economic woes have everyone pinching pennies and looking for bargains. Buying used material handling equipment can seem like a good way to save money, but while there are good bargains to be had, industry watchers warn that there are a lot of unscrupulous people out there trying to cash in on the potential profits. You know you’re getting a high quality product when you buy new material handling equipment from its manufacturer; but if you’re considering buying used equipment, it’s buyer beware.

Business consolidation, poor sales and bankruptcies have forced more material handling equipment onto the used market than usual, so it pays to do your homework and thoroughly investigate both the product and the seller before putting your money down, caution industry experts. Anyone can sell used equipment. No certification is required to sell used equipment, and authorization by original manufacturers is not required. Used equipment shouldn’t be confused with remanufactured equipment that is rebuilt, often by the original manufacturer, and refinished for resale, usually with a manufacturer’s warranty.

The boon market is attracting legitimate sellers who specialize in used material handling equipment sales; but it’s also attracting brokers, auctioneers and folks looking to make a quick buck. These Johnny-come-latelies generally lack any knowledge about the products they are selling or the maintenance they require. Equipment is sold “as is” or sometimes spruced up for resale; but it’s like buying a used car, you don’t know what you’re getting unless you perform a thorough inspection.

Even used, material handling equipment can represent a serious investment. When you buy used, you may get a great bargain; but it’s equally probable that you’ll get an expensive lemon. Follow these tips from Stafford Sterner for Material Handling Management online to ensure that when you buy used material handling equipment, you get what you’re paying for:

  • Deal with reputable, established businesses. In the competitive used equipment market, longevity is a sign of customer satisfaction, reputable business practices, adherence to industry standards, and fair prices. Beware of internet sales unless you can physically verify the business and inventory. A legitimate dealer will carry inventory in stock, be knowledgeable about his stock, allow inspection of equipment before purchase, and provide delivery assurance.

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