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Yard burned: Why some used items worth skipping

Who hasn't gotten at least a little excited when they happened upon a garage sale or stumbled on to Craig's List and found what they believed to be a little bit of hidden treasure, at least in their eyes.
Yes, everyone loves a bargain, particularly when you get something that would be deemed used or slightly used and it works like a charm. More importantly, you've saved money in the process.
Or at least you think so.
Some items are better left as someone's else trash and certainly won't end being something you treasure. It's often hard to decide what to leave on the scrap heap and what is worth taking home, but certain things are easy to justify skipping.
Like furniture.

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This one is like buying used socks or underwear. Unless the plastic is still on couch itself, you shouldn't care how many times the former owner tells you that it is hardly used. "Hardly" is a buzz word when it comes to used that says, in a round about way, this item has been used quite a bit but we're trying to slide in a word that makes you think otherwise.
The truth is, you don't know who had the furniture, if they had pets, were a smoker or anything else you might not really enjoy about sitting on the same cushion as someone you don't know. Not only does the smell of the item come into question, but also what's left in the cushion or spending more money on having it cleaned.
You also want to think twice about tools, too, as it pertains to buying them used. Case in point: how's that shop vac working out for you, the one that is $100 new but you snagged one for $30 on Craig's List. Quit working after the third of fourth use; shocking, to say the least.
The caveat that we tend to overlook with Craig's List specifically is that once you buy it, you rarely get that money back if the item quits working. That is one when it comes to power tools and electronics of any ilk, you simply can't take that chance that the TV is going to turn on for more than few days or that cell phone or power drill is going to last longer than a few uses.
The garage sale coup is something you'll continue to strive for as long as you keeping attending them. But being selective also is part of the process that makes your sales trip a boom or bust.

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