How often should I buy a new computer?

Updated: 09/15/2017 by Computer Hope

Buying a computerThe decision to purchase a new computer depends on a number of factors ranging from the necessity for improved performance issues to additional functionality features. Typically, most total cost of ownership studies conclude that users should replace their computers at least every four years. Below are some different reasons that may help justify the new purchase, or why you may want to wait.

Checklist

Is the computer(s) four or more years old?
Do you need (not want) better hardware (e.g. SSD, Bluetooth, more slots for RAM, etc.)?
Does the computer(s) seem to be too slow for your needs?
Has the Internet gradually started to load more slowly?
Is new software barely meeting or failing to meet its minimum system requirements?
Do you want to upgrade to a more recent operating system (e.g. latest version of Windows)?

If you checked three or more of the boxes above, it's likely time to upgrade. If you were unable to check at least three of these boxes, you might want to wait a while to buy a new computer; until then, certain upgrades may be a good choice.

Tip: If you are replacing an existing computer, the monitor, keyboard, mouse, speakers, printer, and other peripherals can often be used with the new computer.

Tip: A slow computer can be caused by issues that may be remedied without buying a new machine. Make sure to go through the slow computer troubleshooting page before you decide to make a purchase.