Copier Buyers Guide
By 5 Star Business Machines
5 Star Business Machines has been selling and servicing copiers all over Central New York since 1994. In that time we have seen countless companies fall victim to relentless copier salesmen that want to pressure them to purchase equipment they don’t need in order to meet their monthly quotas. The reality is every business is unique, and that’s why we created this copier buyers guide. We would love to do business with you, but even if you don’t we want to make sure you don’t get taken advantage of and get the exact equipment that you need for your business.
New vs Used
When you begin your search for new equipment your first instinct might be to search for a new copier. The obvious benefit of new equipment is that it is just that, new. It doesn’t have any history of breakdowns or previous use. Now a new machine is going to come with a big price tag, and quite frankly we don’t believe new equipment is a good fit for the overwhelming majority of our customers.
Choosing a pre-owned or “used” copier typically is going to save you 70% vs new. At 5 Star our factory trained technicians handpick the machines we sell and lease and put them through our rigorous 5 Star certified reconditioning program.
A pre-owned copier is only as good as the team that rebuilt and services it. Make sure you do your research on the company you are buying from.
Commercial Grade vs Consumer Product
Commercial machines come with a higher up front costs, but they are much cheaper (cost per copy) to operate. The consumables like drums, toners, and developers also have a much longer life span.
Consumer product that you may purchase from places like Office Max or Staples have a lower up front cost, but watch out for the consumables cost. These can cost up to 40 times more per copy then a commercial grade machine. It’s not unusual for new customers to tell us they were spending hundreds of dollars each month on supplies, and assumed all copiers had these costs. Not understanding this major difference could cost you thousands of dollars every year.
Buy vs Lease
These days with technology always improving it often makes more sense to lease rather than buy. If you lease, every couple of years you will be able to upgrade your equipment to the most efficient office equipment available. You will also be able to avoid large upfront investments.
Now there are some advantages to buying as well. By buying you avoid the interest on the financing, and since you own the equipment you can use it as much as you want. You also have an asset to sell if you wish to get rid of it for any reason.
The majority of our customers here at 5 Star choose to lease their copier.
Should I Opt for the Service Contract?
A good service contract from a reliable dealer should cover just about anything that could go wrong with a copier. Most contracts are priced by the monthly volume you run, and if the copies were color or black and white. Some dealers, like 5 Star Business Machines, may even offer save day service if your copier is to break down.
Black and White or Color
Do you need to print in color? Often businesses will purchase a black and white machine, and then also purchase a desktop color printer. Believe it or not if you print in color often enough it may actually be more cost effective to purchase a commercial color copier. You won’t have to purchase the expensive supplies that go along with the desktop printers and you will also have the printing capabilities of a commercial machine.
Other Important Factors to Consider When Buying a Copier
How many copies do you run each month? You’ll need to make sure you can get a machine that can accommodate your printing. This will also come into play if you opt into a service contract (Highly Recommended).
How many different paper sizes do you currently print on? On many machines you can change the paper in the draw as needed, but it may be easier to get a machine with multiple draws so you don’t have too.
Do you want it to function as a scanner or fax? How about 2 sided printing (Duplex)? Not every machine comes standard with these options and you’ll have to decide if these are important to you.
Are you running MAC’s in your office? If you are there may be additional setup costs associated with getting your office up and running.
Do you have an IT department to handle the networking? If not make sure your copier dealer offers networking capabilities. 5 Star does offer this service, but not every dealer does.
How fast do you need your copier to be? What is the speed of your current machine? Is that speed acceptable to you now, or would you like something faster?
What finishing options do you need? Do you just need basic stapling. Maybe you need more finishing options such as a booklet finisher, Tri-folding or Bi-folding.
Give me a call today at (315) 455-7745 and I can personally help you find the perfect pre-owned copier for your business.
President, 5 Star Business Machines