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Billpay/savings recap, plus advice needed re: notebook computer

July 15th, 2007 at 10:32 am

After a couple of lean, lean weeks, I am trying to be smarter with our money. Payday was Friday, and I have paid the following:
Working Assets wireless & long distance, BellSouth, Discover, Arrow pest control, Gas South, and our home equity loan.

I also renewed our Sierra Club membership and made an additional donation ($59), got my hair cut ($47), made a deposit into our ING account ($75) and paid on my Wachovia credit card to cover recent purchases ($335).

I also paid Will back $10 I had to borrow from his bank (how pathetic am I?) I still owe Michael $20, which I will pay back next time I get cash.

Still to pay before the end of the month is our life insurance ($335), newspaper subscription renewal ($113 for six months) and a medical bill ($100) for my annual in May, which went toward our deductible.

Also, I'm planning to go to the chiropractor tomorrow ($40) as well as Trader Joe's.

After all those paid bills, though, I've got $2157.82. My impulse is to slap a bunch of it on a credit card, but I'm resisting that urge lest I wind up with no money in my checking account and having to use the credit card for everyday expenses.

Now, here is an expense that I'd love some advice on. My DH has asked if he could buy a notebook computer, because he travels occasionally for work and sometimes works at home. He is not a gadget guy in the least, so I know that if he's asking for a computer, he really needs it and probably has for some time.

He doesn't need anything fancy; he won't be watching movies, playing games or downloading music or any graphics-heavy stuff like that. He needs to be able to connect to the internet to do legal research, needs to be able to check his email, and needs Microsoft Word.

There is a tax-free weekend coming up, I think the first weekend of August, so we'd love to buy one then. Or if there's some other place online that has fantastic deals on computers, we'd consider that. However, my DH says that he'd really like to look at it before buying, because he's used his partner's notebook before and he hates her style of keyboard, so we'll probably be buying it at a store like Office Depot.

I assume that if we go with an HP or Dell we'll be fine as far as quality goes, but beyond that, I don't know what we need.

Does anyone have any advice about buying one? What does it need in order to connect to the internet at home, at the office, or somewhere like a wireless hot spot?

I am completely ignorant on this matter, so what I really need is "Notebook Computers for Dummies".

5 Responses to “Billpay/savings recap, plus advice needed re: notebook computer”

  1. Carolina Bound Says:

    If you already have a desktop, I think all you'll need is a router for wireless at home.

    I have an HP notebook, and it has a very nice screen. Everyone comments on the quality of it.

  2. boomeyers Says:

    I don't know much about laptops. We bought my daughters off ebay and it has been a champ for the last few years!

    Don't worry about borrowing money from the kids, ours often have more than we do!! Wink

  3. Broken Arrow Says:

    Hmm. You're looking at spending at least $500 USD.

    I think this is one good candidate.

    I don't think there's anything wrong with wanting to see it and touch it first. In which case, any Best Buy, Circuit City, Fry's and so forth are as good as any to get an idea of what you want. However, these places typically sell the "latest and greatest" at a premium price, and I don't think your husband really need all that....

    Where I live, there is a TigerDirect brick and mortar store, which I like, and two other hole-in-the-wall computer outlets that I am aware of. Those are good places to look for good deals on computers and parts when you don't need the latest and greatest.

    As for wireless, you'll want something that features "802.11b" and/or "802.11g". For home, you'll want a wireless router, and each computer that want to connect wirelessly must also have a wireless card inside. The laptop that I've picked above has "802.11b", and will be able to connect wirelessly to just about any other wireless hot spots without any additional hardware.

    I hope that helps. Smile

  4. Tina Says:

    I don't have any suggestions for a good laptop, but I suspect from some of your references that you and I live in the same general area. I live in the Atlanta area.

  5. koppur Says:

    He should buy a refurbished or used one. Half the cost, just as god, eps if he only needs it for the basics.

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