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Posts Tagged ‘how to buy a copier’

5 Steps to Buying The Right Copier for Your Business or Professional Practice

If you or someone you know is in the market for a new copier here is a simple 5 step formula for selecting the right copier for your business or professional practice.

Although my 5 step copier buying formula gives you a good framework for buying a copier your bound to have many more questions.

If that’s the case for you feel free to email me.

ed@edworthington.com

I’m happy to help.

Here are the 5 simple steps.

Step 1 is to decide on the speed of the copier. Standard office copier speeds range from 20-85 pages per minute. If you need help in deciding what speed  your copier should be than click over to my post titled, How Fast Does My Copier Really Need To Be?

Here’s the link.

https://baltimore-copiers.com/2012/11/11/copier-speed/

Step 2 is deciding whether you want a copier that prints and copies in color or just in black.

Buying a color copier if you don’t truly need one can be a real drain on your budget.

So before you pull the trigger on a new color copier click the link below and read my post titled, Color Copier, Do You Really Need One?.

https://baltimore-copiers.com/2013/01/31/color-copier-do-you-really-need-one/

Step 3 is deciding what additional accessories you want for your new copier.

There are many options but the main ones are as follows.

1) Does the copier need to be able to fax? This ones easy.

2) How much paper do you need the copier to hold? Based on the amount of printing and copying your office does you may want to add additional paper drawers. Additional copier paper drawers keep users from having to stop frequently to add paper to the copier.

3) What type of copier finishing options do you want to add? Finishing options include things like sorting trays, stapling, folding and booklet making.

In Step 4 you’ll decide whether you are going to lease or purchase the copier.

A large majority of businesses and professional practices lease their copiers. There are many solid business reasons to lease your copiers but sometimes it make sense to purchase your copier outright if you have the means to do so.

For a more in depth study of this question check out my blog post below  titled, Copier Lease vs Buy: How to Decide if You Should or Lease a Copier for Your  Business.

https://baltimore-copiers.com/?s=lease+vs+buy

In Step 5 should you choose to lease your new copier, is to choose a lease  type and term of the copier lease.

By lease type I mean whether you are going to do a fair market value copier lease or a dollar buyout copier lease.

For more check out the link below which will take you to my post which explains the 3 types of copier leases.

https://baltimore-copiers.com/2012/02/10/3-types-of-copier-leases/

By lease term I mean the length of the lease. 12, 24, 36, 48, 60 month copier leases are all readily available in today’s highly competitive market.

Obviously the longer the copier lease term the lower your payment will be. The downside is that you will pay more interest and fees on the longer lease.

My recommendation on copier lease length is to go with a 36 month lease for 2 reasons.

1) Technology changes rapidly and new technologies can save your company time and money.

One example of this is toner efficiency. Every year copiers become more and more efficient in their toner use. This is good for you because if you use less toner, you have to buy less toner.  This should lower the cost of your service plan thus saving you money.

This is just one of many examples of how new copier technologies can save your company or professional practice money.

2) The second reason is simple wear and tear.

As copiers get older and get more and more use they will go down more often. Copiers are machines and machines wear down and break down.

One mistake many companies make is taking a 5 year lease on a machine that just barely fits their needs today in terms of speed and maximum total monthly usage.

When these companies begin to grow they naturally make more copies and prints. Now they may have a machine that no longer fits their needs but has 2 years left on the lease.

In addition to having a copier that no longer fits their needs they may also have a copier that is breaking down often because it wasn’t designed to handle  the volumes it’s doing. These frequent breakdowns will result in the copier company raising the service rate to offset their increased costs.

Of course you can upgrade to a new copier but you WILL pay part or all of the money left on your existing lease no matter what the salesperson tells you. No copier company is going to eat 2 years of a lease in order to sell you a new copier.

Any company doing that would be out of business very quickly. It’s just too much money to absorb.

The dirty little secret of the copier industry (much like the car industry) is that they are simply adding the existing lease buyout amount into the new copier lease.

The bottom line is if you’re going to do a 5 year copier lease be sure you’re thinking ahead about how your company may grow. Even if you don’t forecast growth over the next 3-5 years I would recommend buying a faster copier that can handle larger monthly volumes than you think you now need.

It will save you a lot of headaches down the road and it only costs a small amount more per month.

I hope this was helpful. Feel free to contact me with your questions by email or by filling out the form below.

ed@edworthington.com

If your located in the Baltimore, Maryland, Washington, DC, or Northern Virginia area feel free to call me for a no obligation quote. I will give you a solid quote with no sales games or pressure. I can be reached at eworthington@abscare.com or 443-570-0414.

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What Happens at the End of a Copier Lease? If You Don’t Know, You’ll Pay Too Much

In my day to day work one of the most frequently asked questions I get about copiers is, “what happens at the end of the lease?”.

I have covered this in a previous post on the general topic of leases but I thought it might be good to dedicate a specific post to the topic.

What happens at the end of a copier lease depends on what type of lease it is, fair market value or dollar out/ buck out lease.

At the end of a fair market value lease the leasing company will decide what they believe the fair market value of your copier is based on the original sale price.

If you would like to keep the copier you just pay the leasing company that amount of money and it’s yours.

If you don’t want to pay what the leasing company is asking than you let the leasing company know that and they will send you return instructions via fax or email.

The return instructions will let you know how to ship the copy machine and where to ship copy machine to get it back to them.

The “where” is self explanatory but the how requires you pay special attention to what the leasing company is asking you to do.

For example, how they want the copier packed and how much and what type of shipping  insurance they require you to put on the copier.

Also they will let you know by what date they expect you to have the machine at their location.

Doing exactly as the leasing company has asked is very important.

I have a customer in Westminster, Maryland who recently bought a copier from me.

When he decided to purchase his next copier from me his current vendor told him they would come get the copier and ship it back to the leasing company at no charge.

RED FLAG!! Why would they do that at their cost for a customer who has just decided to go with another copier company.

I instructed my customer to be sure he asks his former vendor for proof of insurance on the shipping as well as proof that they had shipped it.

Unfortunately my new customer didn’t follow my advice and somehow the copier never made it back to the leasing company. Well guess who’s liable for the $2,000 value of that copier. My customer is.

To further complicate the matter his former vendor had just been purchased by another copier company in Baltimore and when he called them they referred him to the new copier company saying that the new company has all of their customer records.

Well when he contacted the new copier company in Baltimore they had no record whatsoever of this customer.

The moral of the story is at the end of a fair market value lease if you decide not to keep the copy machine be sure to control the process of shipping that machine back and do exactly as the leasing company has asked or you can end up like my new customer who now owes the leasing company $2,000 and he no recourse.

Now let’s move on to dollar buyout or sometimes referred to buck-out leases.

This type of lease is simple. At the end of the lease you pay the leasing company one dollar and the copier is yours to keep. Thus the name dollar out copier lease or buck out copier lease.

I hope this helps. If you have any questions feel free to contact me using the form below or by email. ed@edworthington.com.

Thanks for stopping by. Have a fun day.

Copier Service Contracts- What You Really Need to Know- Part 2

January 15, 2013 Leave a comment

Hey it’s Ed Worthington from Action Business Systems-Toshiba Copiers. We are a copier company in Maryland serving the Maryland, Washington DC and Northern Virginia area but this blog is relevant to anyone in the world who buys copiers.

In today’s installment of my Copier Service Contracts series I’d like to talk with you about another thing you really need to know about copier service/maintenance contracts: Automatic Increases.

When I say automatic increases what I mean is that ALL copier service agreements contain in the terms and conditions the ability for the company to increase the cost of the service in specific time increments.

For example the agreement may state that the service fee can go up as much as 5% per year each year. Some people may think that’s too much and some may think that’s reasonable.

My main purpose of this post is to make you aware of the fact that these increases exist in the fine print and to let you know that YOU NEED TO READ THAT FINE PRINT SO YOU DON’T GET RIPPED OFF.

This is particularly relevant to me right now because there is a company I am working with right now whose current copier vendor has a 10% per quarter increase built in. Yes I said 10% per quarter. OUTRAGEOUS!!

This company also just received a check in the tens of thousands of dollars from their current copier company because I exposed that fact that they were being ripped off.

The current vendor not only charged them the 10% per quarter but much more. Can you say SHADY!

You may ask yourself how a copier company can get away with overcharging a small business so badly.

Well I’ll tell you how and it happens all the time. It is because the business Owner/Controller/CFO doesn’t pay attention to the service bill from the copier company and they increase it slowly. They don’t increase it by 30% all at once. But maybe by 5-6% every quarter.

It really starts to add up!

So the first ACTION POINT here is before you sign a copier maintenance agreement read the fine print and if you don’t like what you see, negotiate.

The second action point is to read your copier service bill carefully and watch for increases.

This advice could save you a lot of money in the long run.

If you have any questions about copier service agreements or anything else copier/document management related feel free to call me or fill out the form below and I’ll get right back to you. 443-570-0414 Thanks for stopping by.

How to Buy A Copier

December 21, 2012 Leave a comment

After many months of writing and editing I have finally finished my new book, How to Buy a Copier- A Step by Step Guide to Copier Leases, Copier Service Contracts and Just About Everything Else You Need to Know To Get The Right Copier at the Best Possible Price.

I know the title is long but I wanted it to communicate exactly what this book is. This book is THE definitive copier buying guide for anyone who is now or will ever buy a copier for their business or practice.

Although my company Action Business Systems-Toshiba Copiers is located in the Maryland and service the Baltimore, Washington DC, and Northern Virginia areas this copier buying guide can help you no matter what part of the country or world your in.

To receive a FREE copy just fill out the form below.

How Fast Does My Copier Really Need To Be?

November 11, 2012 Leave a comment

One of the questions I get the most and probably the first question you should ask yourself when purchasing a copier is, “how fast does my copier need to be?”.

The speed of the copier you select should be based on the number of copies and prints you will do per month.

Buyer Beware! When reading the manufactures literature they tend to overinflate the number of pages per month that their copiers can handle.

So in order to help with this question I have copied the information below ( how to determine your monthly output and the maximum duty chart) from BLI’s (Buyers Laboratory) website.

BLI is an excellent source of unbiased information for anyone in the process of buying a copier or printer. At the end of this post I have included information on who Buyers Lab is and how to contact them.

How do you determine your monthly output volume?

  • Bills for your service agreement and print shop provide a good snapshot of your current usage; so does a look at your current copier’s meter.
  • Some copier companies use network management utilities that can tell you all the prints, copies, faxes and/or scans sent from the network to your copier or printer.
  • Many dealers also use devices that audit your volume. However, audit tools can sometimes miss devices such as small printers.

The chart below compares the average manufacturers maximum monthly page output vs. what Buyers Lab recommends so you don’t  send your copier to an early grave.

Manufacturers’ Maximum Monthly Duty Cycle vs. BLI’s Optimum Monthly Volume

Monochrome Average Maximum Monthly Duty Cycle BLI’s Optimum Monthly Volume
Up to 20 ppm 19,094 3,600
21 to 30 ppm 50,983 9,000
31 to 40 ppm 123,140 17,000
41 to 49 ppm 145,141 26,500
50 to 59 ppm 259,070 37,250
60 to 69 ppm 314,865 55,000
70 to 79 ppm 347,059 82,000
80 to 89 ppm 530,000 135,000
90 to 99 ppm 750,000 175,000
Color* Average Maximum Monthly Duty Cycle BLI’s Optimum Monthly Volume
16 to 25 ppm 85,879 13,500
26 to 36 ppm 113,101 15,000
37 to 46 ppm 153,278 28,000
46+ ppm 225,306 36,500

* For color models that a have a different speed for color and black modes, the speeds listed are the black speeds.

Hope this helps!

Come back next month when I’ll cover the question, “Should I lease or buy a copier?”.

If you have any copier buying questions please feel free to contact me.

If your business is located in Baltimore, Maryland,  Washington, DC or Northern Virgina and you are in the market for a new or used copier please contact me for a NO OBLIGATION, ABSOLUTELY NO PRESSURE quote.

Ed Worthington- Senior Account Executive

Action Business Systems-Toshiba

ed@edworthington.com

443-570-0414

Buyer Lab Info:

For over 45 years, Buyers Laboratory (BLI) has been the leading source for unbiased and reliable intelligence for the imaging industry. BLI was founded in 1961 by the late Arthur Kallet, the co-founder and 20-year head of Consumers Union, the publisher of the highly respected Consumer Reports magazine (BLI is not affiliated with Consumers Union). In February 2004, BLI was acquired by publishing industry veterans Michael Danziger and Mark Lerch, the current Chief Executive Officer and Chief Operating Officer of BLI, respectively. In 2005, BLI launched its international division with offices in Hong Kong and London.

You can reach Buyer Lab on the web at http://www.buyerslab.com

Save your Healthcare Practice Time and Money with Software Designed Just for Your Practice!

If you own or manage a health care practice in the Baltimore, Maryland or  Washington DC area than Lexmark’s Clinical Assistant software is something you really should know about.

The Lexmark Clinical Assistant is a software bundle for Lexmark multifunction printers (MFPs) customized specifically for the healthcare industry. Clinical Assistant applications are designed to address common workflow challenges in clinical environments to help increase staff productivity and reduce errors.

Take a look at this video for a quick overview.

If you have questions or comments give me a call or email. 443-570-0414 eworthington@abscare.com

http://www.lexmark.com/US/X646ca/x646ca_new.html

Should You Buy Used Copiers for Your Baltimore Business

One of the questions I get regularly from my clients and prospects is, “do you have any used copiers for sale?’

The answer is always yes.

Here at my company we always have used machines coming in that are just off lease.

I would assume this is true for most copier companies, not just us.

The real question is, are used copiers a good deal or is it best to lease or purchase a brand now copier/multi-Function device.

The answer is yes, used copiers can be a fantastic deal. Like most technology products, copiers are constantly being upgraded by adding new features and improving efficiency.

Because of this, you can get some good deals on off-lease machines with under 100,000 copies/prints on them.

Here at my company we sell Toshiba copiers. For a Toshiba machine 100,000 copies is a very low volume. In other words, I would not hesitate for a second to sell my client a Toshiba copier with that volume of copies on it.

I would consider this a machine with many, many years of usefulness left on it.

The bottom line is you have to take in consideration your business copy/print volume and then decide if a used machine is right for you.

If you are a high volume user, I may suggest you lean towards a new machine, but for the average small office a used machine may be a perfect fit for your budget and your needs.

Here at my office we have several used Toshiba e-Studio Copiers that start at around $1,500.00.

These are great prices for really solid Toshiba Copiers.

So in summary, yes you can buy a used copier and get a solid machine at a great price.

If you have questions about copiers or would like a quote on a new or used copier please contact me, Ed Worthington at 443-570-0414 or eworthington@abscare.com