For example, a great pair of sunglasses which i paid a bargain for, but if they get lost or broken, I'll have to pay a lot to get as good a pair.

EDIT: I'm looking for the word that describes the current state of the sunglasses (from the example), not one that describes the initial purchase. Also, it could be something I found and didn't buy.

  • You might have been upsold a loss leader. Suppose you used to wear cheap supermarket sunglasses, but your optician knows you'd never get your prescription glasses from anyone except him because there's no local competition. He might sell you your first pair of photosensitive (Reactolite) prescription glasses for the same price as the supermarket rubbish, knowing you'll replace them more often now (at the full price in future), because now you'll wear (and scratch) them more. – FumbleFingers Jun 27 '17 at 12:47
  • This is not, and the answers will not, be an idiom. – Carl Witthoft Jun 27 '17 at 14:49

You could as well use steal.

From Dictionary.com:

  1. Informal. something acquired at a cost far below its real value; bargain:

This dress is a steal at $40.

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  • +1, I like the word, but see the edit in the OP, it doesn't exactly fit what I'm looking for – DAE Jun 28 '17 at 5:13

I would say "you got your original glasses for a bargain"

Bargain [bahr-guh n] /noun

  1. an advantageous purchase, especially one acquired at less than the usual cost.

Source: Dictionary.com The sale offered bargains galore.

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  • 1
    Perhaps emphasise this by saying a real bargain ;-) – Dan Jun 27 '17 at 13:01

a sweet deal

a business or financial deal in which you get an advantage, pay a  low price etc

Usage: I got a sweet deal on the car.

source: Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English

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  • Just "deal" alone is also used for the same thing. – fixer1234 Jun 28 '17 at 19:42

I've looked for such a word (or short phrase) in the past and not found one. That probably means there isn't one in typical British English.

There are some terms which might help you though:

  • "Replacement cost"/"replacement value" as in "it might have been cheap but it has a high replacement value"
  • "Worth a lot to me". Note that this includes sentimental value.
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