I finally pulled the trigger on a new laptop.
I didn't go with Apple, Dell or any other mainstream brands. I went with Metabox. Yes, you read it right: Metabox. They are also known as Clevo in other parts of the world. Gigabyte also seem to have these laptops sold with a Sager branding.
The model I went with is called Alpha N850HJ. It's cheap (for the specs) and pretty fast for what I want to use it; that is everything, but gaming. I don't plan to game on this laptops. The memory, storage and Wi-Fi options are user configurable, so I simply took the base model, upgraded the memory to 16GB and added the Intel 8265 Wi-Fi card. They had a promotion on the Hynix 512GB SATA M.2 SSD, so I went with that instead of an NVMe drive. I won't benefit from an NVMe drive; it's only for the bragging rights. I also decided not an operating system as I have a license I can use with the Windows 10 Creators Update, which just came in time for the laptop.
It ended up costing me AUD 1,487 although if you tried building it on Metabox website it would have cost AUD 1,507 + AUD 30 for shipping. I bought it from Kong Computers which saved me $50 including shipping. It took a week to get the laptop built, tested and delivered.
In terms of future expansion options, I can add another 16GB RAM card, a 2.5" SSD and replace the battery if it goes bad. Of course the existing M.2 SSD and the Wi-Fi cards are replaceable as well.
I will talk about my initial impressions about it in another post.