If you are looking to purchase, it can be difficult deciding between purchasing new or purchasing second hand equipment. Talk to anyone in the industry and they will say how quickly systems depreciate in value, with equipment 2-3 years old being sold for up to 60% off the original purchase price. This opens up the risk of purchasing broken or non-genuine systems, and so it is essential to know how to protect yourself from the dangers of purchasing second hand.
1 – Non-genuine systems – With the rise in Asian manufacturing quickly becoming the standard, the market has been flooded with non-genuine replicas that look and feel the same as a standard system. Internally, however, they fail to deliver any of the same results as a genuine system. Often these will still be sold at a high price and under the guise of a real device, only for the buyer to be unpleasantly surprised when they realise it is a fake, long after the seller is gone. In a recent case, we had a client looking to purchase an Ulthera system, where we ran a free background check, only to find that the system did not exist, despite the variety of documentation provided to them, proving its legitimacy. These documents were clearly forgery after confirmation. More deceptive than outright non-genuine systems is the rise of non-genuine parts, which can often be harder to detect for an unsuspecting clinic.
2 – Non-genuine parts and second-tier service providers – The most common problem with fakes in Australia isn’t the systems as a whole, but companies taking broken genuine systems and fixing them with fake components, and re-selling them as if there was never any damage. Imagine going to a car dealer thinking you have bought a BMW, only to come home and find a Toyota engine under the hood. This has become extremely common with certain models, such as Candelas, where second-tier service providers and non-genuine components have become common in the marketplace. This is often difficult to observe without assistance, as even if you were to call the companies responsible, they can confirm the system is genuine, yet you are essentially purchasing fake componentry.
3 – Purchasing a lemon – Often if clinics purchase a system which consistently breaks down, never operates effectively, and does not deliver any results, they will try to sell it off online for a cheap price. From a quick glance at the specifications, it initially seems like a fantastic purchase. Often when clinics are looking to sell their equipment, they may lie and deceive buyers, passing on their problematic, underperforming equipment to other clinics.
So how should you investigate purchasing second hand equipment for the business, so that you can benefit from the rapid depreciation of the systems, purchasing them for the best price possible, while also keeping yourself safe?
1 – Ensure service history is safe – Just like cars, how the system is maintained is arguably more important than the system itself, and so having a detailed history of its servicing is essential. We like to believe that any one party can be illegitimate. In regards to servicing, we recommend asking the seller to authorise you to the supplier, so you can be presented with the entire history of service reports for the system, detailing every aspect, from maintenance checks to any major repairs required over the years. This also gives you an accurate representation of what ongoing payments you can expect for service and repair bills.
2 – Cross reference serial numbers and QA parts – It is essential that before you purchase any second hand equipment of substantial value, you ensure it has been checked by an authorised provider specialising in that piece of equipment. You would not purchase a car without having a roadworthy done, so you should not do it with a medical laser either. It is simply not enough to check that the system is genuine, as with the prevalence of non-genuine parts in the modern economy, it is essential that an engineer is on-site to run a full quality inspection prior to you purchasing.
3 – Check costs of ongoing service contracts – Most providers will have ongoing service contracts available that act similarly to a warranty, covering any service or technical requirements over a period of time, should anything occur. Often when purchasing second hand, we recommend getting a minimum 12 months service contract, so that the first year runs as smoothly as possible. From there you can decide how you would like to continue forth in the business. However, this warranty is typically only available on new models, as the original suppliers are not able to verify second hand systems to provide service contracts.
If you would like any assistance in purchasing second hand technology safely for the business, or if you are looking to list any of your own equipment, our team at Lasertrade would be more than happy to be of assistance. We work with all of the original suppliers in the industry to ensure that everything available on-site is genuine and fit for sale. If you would like to investigate any models available, we will organise for a full quality assurance check by the relevant engineers from the original manufacturer, to ensure it is up to the same standard as a brand new model, and verify that every single internal component is genuine and ready for sale. Further to this, because we are partnered with the original suppliers, we are the only second hand retailer able to supply 12 month service contracts from the original manufacturer with genuine components, rather than a 3rd party warranties with fake parts and little to no training.
If you would like to reach out you can send us an enquiry using the contact us page.