Modern homes are full of appliances. Buying and running these appliances can cost a lot of money if you’re not careful. Here are just a few tricks to keep appliance costs down.
Shop for used appliances
When buying appliances, don’t just consider brand new equipment. Used appliances can be a lot cheaper. In fact, using local selling sites like Gumtree, you may even be able to pick up appliances such as used refrigerators and washing machines for free (providing you have a vehicle to pick them up in).
The drawback of buying used appliances is that some of them may not be in such good condition. It’s worth always giving second-hand appliances a good inspection first before buying. If you’re ordering online, make sure that the seller provides photos and a clear description of the condition.
Some older appliances may also be a lot less energy efficient than buying a new appliance. Research into the energy rating if you can – if it is low, you may not want to purchase the appliance as it could mean extra money in energy bills.
Buy new appliances in the sales
If you prefer to buy shiny new appliances, make sure to time your purchase right. Look out for seasonal sales periods when appliances can often be discounted. Black Friday and the January Sales are just two common examples.
It could also be worth looking for vouchers online at sites like Groupon. Some of these will only last for a certain period and could offer equally good discounts.
Think twice before buying on finance
Buying appliances on finances allows you to spread out the initial purchase cost over a couple years. However, these loans often have interest attached. Some finance schemes could have you paying 50% more in the long run. Such finance schemes should be avoided if possible.
If you need to take out a loan, take your time to shop around for the cheapest deal first. Having a good credit score will usually help.
Know when to repair and when to replace
When it comes to appliances breaking, it’s worth also considering whether it’s more economical to repair or replace. Repairs are often worth doing on appliances that are only a few years old. You may not even need to hire a repair technician in some cases – you may be able to simply follow online tutorials and buy parts online such as these replacement parts for Frigidaire. This could help you to get more life out of the appliance rather than splashing out on an unnecessary upgrade.
Replacing is likely to be more economical if your appliance is old or if it’s severely broken. All appliances have a recommended life – after this multiple parts are likely to start failing, making repairs futile. Meanwhile, a severely broken appliance may be beyond repair. The 50% rule is worth considering when dealing with broken equipment – if repairs cost more than 50% of the appliance’s value, you’re better off buying a replacement.
Don’t extend your warranty
It’s common for appliance brands and retailers to offer warranties with their appliances. These warranties may only last a year or two. After this, you may be asked whether you want to extend your warranty. Consider whether it’s really worth the extra payments – there’s a likeliness you’ll never need this coverage and you may find that there are lots of repairs not covered in the terms and conditions.
Limit your usage
In many cases, you can save money simply by using appliances less. When it comes to your washing machine, don’t wash half loads – wait until you’ve got a full load so that you’re getting the most out of each spin cycle and using less water and electricity. As for tumble dryers, don’t use these on a hot sunny day when you could be drying off clothes naturally in the sun. Less usage will make your energy costs lower and your appliance will suffer less wear and tear, prolonging its life before needing to be repaired.
Avoid unnecessary appliances
There are likely to be some appliances out there that you want, but simply do not need. This could include a steam-mop or an electric rice cooker. If you’re trying to save money, avoid buying these appliances for the small added convenience.