Purchasing a Large Appliance Online
Are the risks worth it?
The internet is great for researching customer reviews and for tracking down that hard-to-find item that you might not be able to purchase locally. Plus, you might even find a deal and save a little money. Household items, books or clothes might be a natural purchase online, but what about appliances? Is it a good idea to purchase a large appliance online or should you visit a store locally? There are a number of reasons why we recommend shopping local.
Understand the risks of buying appliances online
Make sure you know the whole story
Appliances are expensive and should last a long time so you want to make sure you have ALL the details. A salesperson can ask you questions and share options so the model you get, is the model you will enjoy using for many, many years to come. Most online sites only show basic specification information which does not tell the full story.
Do you know how large appliances get from the manufacturer to you?
Washers and dryers are too large to ship via UPS, FedEx or the US Post Office so when you order online, they are shipped on a truck by a common carrier. Shipping damage is more likely when a washer or dryer is shipped one at a time versus in a full truckload from the manufacturer to a local dealer. Shipping damage is NOT covered by the manufacturer’s warranty so that expense becomes yours. Some online sites will let you return the product but generally, you will be required to pay a return shipping expense and/or a restocking allowance of up to 25%in advance.
What if your product needs service during its life?
Many brick and mortar dealers will only service what they sell. If you buy an appliance online, there may not be an authorized service company in your area. You may have to pay for someone to come and service your appliance or take it to an independent service company that could be 50 – 100 miles away – again, at your expense.
Know who you’re buying from
Some of the largest internet shopping sites allow individuals to create a storefront on their sites for a fee. You may think you are buying from a big company but in reality, your internet “dealer” may be a person working from their home computer. They can be very helpful while you are buying but do not have any resources, or even desire to help you with any issues you may have in the future. They may not even be in business then.
Research online but it pays to shop local
Before heading into a store, do your research ahead of time. Look at customer comments and reviews to learn about others satisfaction or dissatisfaction with that product.
Trust the experts
Independent dealers provide a level of knowledge, service and community support that big box stores just can’t match. Our independent dealers are appliance experts. They offer knowledge and advice when choosing the best product to meet your needs. They don’t just sell products- they build relationships with a personal level of customer service. They listen, answer questions and work hard to ensure your needs are met.
See it before you buy it
How many large purchases would you make without actually seeing what you’re paying for? Independent dealers will have a model for you to look at so you can see the quality for yourself. Let them give you a tour of your new washer and dryer before you purchase.
One stop shopping
Most independent dealers service what they sell. This means you call the same person you bought your appliance from if something goes wrong. You don’t call a number, get passed around to multiple people and talk with someone that knows nothing about you or where you live. You have peace of mind knowing that your appliances are always in good hands.
Support your community
Not only do you build community, you strengthen your local economy. You are more than a number to your local store owner and when you buy local, you can ensure that your hard earned money is going back to your community.
Appliances are big purchases that will always require some support during their product life. When you buy from a qualified independent appliance dealer, you know you’re investing in expertise, industry knowledge, community dedication and customer service.