Appliance Shopping During a Pandemic

Have you tried appliance shopping since the pandemic hit? Are you currently searching for a new appliance and need some advice? If so, keep on reading!

Recent supply chain issues have made it seemingly impossible to get what you want (or need!) quickly. Over the past year I have ordered two different appliances from two different places. Satisfaction was definitely varied!

Appliance #1

The process of getting the first appliance – a stove – was a true test of my patience. Honestly – it still shocks me how horrible the experience was. Shockingly bad.

I ordered it in May from a major home improvement centre, it arrived in November. Actually the first one arrived in July but the company decided to deliver it unannounced and literally pushed it 4 feet off the back of the delivery truck and then proceeded to roll it up the sidewalk, stairs, pathway and finally another set of stairs.

After lengthy discussions with the complaints department (who I should note wasn’t aware that it had been delivered at all and took some convincing that it was indeed sitting in my living room in a box that was blown apart and broken) they finally agreed that I did, in fact, have possession of what was most likely a damaged stove. The decision was made to send a new one.

Perhaps I should have stuck with the original (most likely severely damaged) stove, but I wasn’t willing to take delivery on a product that literally had a message on the box saying “Do not drop or roll” that had in fact been dropped and rolled and looked like it had exploded out of the packaging.

So we waited. The second stove did arrive – an additional 4 months later for a total of 7 months from the day it was originally ordered. This second stove also arrived unannounced and with one driver. Fortunately, I wasn’t home so they didn’t leave it (or roll it up the stairs!) and I was able to call to schedule another delivery date.

I’ll stop my story about that first appliance here. I could go on. Trust me, there’s more!

Appliance #2

The second appliance – a fridge – arrived in almost record time from CAS. I feel I must give the actual company credit here but so you know, I’m not being paid by them to do so! Nor do I have any relatives working there! They were simply a joy to deal with. I ordered it on a Friday and received it the following Monday. Impressive. They arrived at the agreed upon time with two people and the fridge. Took out the old fridge and brought in the new one. Smooth as silk!

So for today’s post, after this rather long introduction, I thought I’d give you a few tips for purchasing appliances at a time when supply chain issues and delivery problems have become epic.

Hope they help!

Tip #1Shop around for your appliance

The reality is that you will most likely find your appliance at more than one store. After the hassle of buying the oven (see above if you have just jumped to this part of the post!) I decided it would make sense to not return to that store for this purchase. So I set off to search a few places for the particular fridge I was hoping to get. I found it at pretty much every appliance store I went to – and trust me, I went to a few! All had similar – actually identical – pricing. However, somewhat unexpectedly the delivery date varied. For all but one of the stores, delivery was a minimum of three weeks with no guaranteed date. The store I ultimately ordered it from happened to have a brand new one in their inventory so delivery was only a few days from the date of ordering.

Moral of the story – now is definitely the time to pick up that phone and call around!

My fridge at one of the stores I didn’t buy it from!
Tip #2 – Double check delivery options and details

Perhaps the biggest mistake I made when ordering the first appliance was not checking out the details of delivery. Although the major home improvement center advertised that delivery was included in the price, what they failed to mention was that it was delivery to the sidewalk in front of my house and that it would be essential to have people at home to receive the delivery and move it inside.

Also – and this is a side note! You should note that not all major retailers use their own trucks for delivery. Does this make a difference? Maybe. I strongly feel that the company used to deliver my stove simply wasn’t capable of doing so in an efficient manner.

When it came time to order the fridge I made it a priority to deal with a company that would make sure the delivery ended up in my house undamaged! I had no desire to repeat the process of having to return a damaged item because the delivery company used was sub-par.

The old fridge going out – CAS has some pretty amazing delivery guys!
Tip #3 – Be patient and plan ahead

While I was able to find the exact fridge I wanted in a very reasonable time frame, this won’t always be the case. (As I’ve already mentioned, the same exact fridge at numerous other stores had a delivery date that was at least 3 weeks later). If you’re planning on renovating or are just looking to update your appliances – you’ll need to practice patience. I’m sure the shortages we are experiencing now will eventually figure themselves out. For the time being you need to allow for some extra time.

Remember, it’s frustrating for everyone. Not least for the poor salespeople that have the unfortunate task of telling you the item you want is months away!

Tip #4 – Be flexible

If you’re replacing an item because it’s broken then the best advice I have is to be flexible! I don’t think I need to go into a lengthy description here but let’s just say if your fridge breaks and the one you love is 3 months away from being delivered, now might be the time to consider a different model!

Speak Your Mind