What if your TV is busted and you and your roommate want a new one? The flat-screen TV you like best costs about $400 at an electronics store. You don't have that much cash and you don't want to put it on a credit card, so what can you do?
You may be considering getting it from a rent-to-own store. These stores let you rent an item for a seemingly small weekly fee. After a set period of time, you own it. Sounds great. You can get the TV you want right away and pay only about $15 a week in rental fees and sales tax. After 65 weeks, the TV is yours. But be careful of these plans. When you add it all up, you'll discover you're paying more than $1,000 for a $400 TV!
Weekly rental $15 x 65 weeks = $975.00
5% sales tax 75¢ x 65 weeks = $48.75
Possible delivery fee $10 (one-time) = $10.00
Total cost of rent-to-own TV = $1,033.75
Keep the $600 in your pocket. A better option is to buy a used TV or save until you have the $400.