Laptop computers are expensive to purchase -- especially if you need to buy several at a time for your home or business. However, there are several ways to find and purchase laptops at wholesale or below retail prices. Manufacturers fix customer returns and offer them to the public, or with a little ingenuity, you can scoop up great deals on auction websites or by contacting local businesses. Although you may need to buy in bulk to get the best deals on wholesale laptops, you can often find a great price if you only want to buy one unit.
Search your favourite computer manufacturer's website for an "Outlet," "Refurbished" or "Clearance" link. Manufacturers such as Dell, Apple and Sony accept returns from customers who experience problems with purchased computers or decide that they simply do not like them. The manufacturer tests the computer, replaces parts as necessary and resells it for significantly below the original retail price. A factory-refurbished laptop generally carries the same warranty as a new one. When you buy one, check the sale terms carefully; many manufacturers require you to state that you are not purchasing the laptop for resale.
Contact the computer manufacturer directly, and ask to speak to the enterprise sales department if you are a reseller and have the capital available to purchase computers in bulk. Be prepared to prove that you have a reseller's license, and be prepared to haggle if you want to negotiate for the best price possible.
Check auction websites such as eBay for "Buy It Now" auctions priced significantly below average. A "Buy It Now" auction allows you to purchase an item immediately rather than bidding against others, and people occasionally post sales for laptops at prices lower than what they are worth. These "Buy It Now" sales often end quickly because resellers frequently use software to automate the process of searching for and buying low-priced items.
Call local schools and businesses, and ask if they are in the process of upgrading their computers. A large organisation may be interested in selling its collection of outdated laptops and other computers in bulk at a slightly lower price than they could get by selling them individually. If you are a computer reseller, you might be able to negotiate the takeover of the organisation's old computers as part of a deal to outfit the company with new machines.
Call local merchandise liquidators, and ask if they are selling laptops. Merchandise liquidators purchase customer returns from retail chains and resell them in bulk -- often by weight or by the pallet load. Some liquidators require you to have a reseller's license, but many do not. Liquidators do not test or refurbish electronics before selling them; if you purchase a pallet of returned laptops, be prepared to fix some of them before you will be able to use or resell them.