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You saved up enough to by that new fridge you wanted (or, more likely, your old trusty one died and you need a new one ASAP). Most appliance purchases end up being quick emergency purchases, which doesn’t always leave a lot of time for shopping around.
There are still some great ways to save and these tips can save you hundreds of dollars on your big purchase. If you need hard proof, check out my example at the bottom where we saved almost 60% on the fridge above!
Ways to Save on Appliances
- Narrow down what you are looking for. Is it a side by side fridge, a top loader or front loading washing machine, what color, what features do you have to have? Choose a few models that are in a reasonable price point for your budget to compare. Getting a good price is easier to see when you have less options to think about.
- Check the reviews. This is really important. You are investing in something that should last 10+ years and you don’t want to get a “deal” on something with unexpectedly high maintenance costs.
- Research prices online. Make a list of every nearby retailer you can think and start checking their prices online. Note the price and any promotions that are going on and when they end.
HHGregg, BestBuy, Fry’s (GA), Sears, Lowe’s, and Home Depot are all good places to start.
- Know your price match policies. If you find that one particular store has a great deal, realize that almost all appliance retailers will price match. You can take that print out and get that price at the store of your choosing. Some stores will even offer to beat the price by 5-10%!
- Don’t be afraid to negotiate. Many times you can get an additional discount by asking. Sometimes employees know about coupons or upcoming promotions that you’ll only be aware of if you ask. For example, at Sears if you have them email you specs on large appliances, sometimes it comes with a $100 off coupon!
- Look for free delivery. Delivery can be upwards of $75, or many times retailers offer free delivery. If they don’t – ask if they can waive the delivery charge and certainly take free delivery into account if you are price matching!
- Consider the benefits of rewards programs. Some examples are Best Buy’s Reward Zone or the 5% off you’d get from using a Lowe’s Card. These give you a percentage of your purchase back which can really add up on expensive items.
- Apply for new mover’s discounts. If you have just moved or plan to, be aware that submitting an address change to USPS qualifies you for all sorts of goodies. You can get a 10% off coupon for Lowe’s, discounts for Best Buy and more! Most of the time, these can be stacked on top of sales for extra savings.
- Buy with gift cards. Look for incentives to buy gift cards. Maybe it’s fuel discounts from your grocery store, rewards back at a drugstore or discounts off your groceries with a gift card purchase. Pay for your appliances with these gift cards and layer on savings!
- Time your purchase. If there is a holiday coming up you may want to wait to shop. Often times retailers offer extra discounts on long 3 day weekends.
- Order online for additional cash back. If you find a great deal, think about ordering online through a cash back site like eBates. 5% back on your purchase may not sound like a lot but on a $1,000 fridge you just put $50 back in your pocket. That’s the first batch of groceries to fill it up for most families. You can still apply coupons and sometimes even price match over chat support online too!
- Be ready to act when you find the right deal. With all this research under your belt, you have to be ready to purchase with the time strikes. Often times amazing deals don’t last and stock on well-priced items can be limited. Get a move on once you find the deal you want. Most places offer delivery out in the future, so even if you won’t be ready for the new dishwasher for a month, you can still get the deal at an awesome price today.
- Check for local rebates from your electric/gas company. This is easy money for the cost of a stamp on a purchase you are making anyway.
- Opt to sell your old appliance instead of the free haul away option. Free haul away is great if you’d have to pay to dispose of your old appliance, but if you can get $50 for it on Facebook Marketplace or Craigslist, that goes back into your pocket for the next purchase.
- Buy Used. Just like you are considered selling your old one, this is always an option to save a chunk off the price of buying brand new. Research the top brands and throughly inspect what you are buying first.
- Be wary of extra charges and warranties. Most places will try to sell you an extra warranty or bonus parts. We generally decline anything that’s optional. Your new appliance already comes with a manufacturer’s warranty. You can extend the warranty but most financial folks say it never pay offs.
- Look for scratch & dent models. This is a huge way to save, especially if you just NEED an appliance today and don’t have time for the steps above. Many stores have an area set aside for appliances that are scratched on the side, were floor models or otherwise have an imperfection. Often, these are minor and if it’s a flaw you can live with, you just saved a bunch of money for the same functionality.
A Real Example
I know this is a lot to take in, so I’m going to give you a real world example from a few years ago when we moved into our current house:
After checking Consumer Reports, I liked the Whirlpool Gold line. The Stainless Steel fridge I was looking was a retail price of $2199.99. Ouch! I was determined to see what I could do to get a discount. After all, I regularly save 50% on groceries, why not on a refrigerator to put them in!
After checking prices everywhere, I found a great deal with free delivery (normally $69.99) at Sears. It was on sale during a holiday weekend for $1499. Yep, $700 off! After doing some digging, I was also able to stack several coupon codes through my Shop Your Way Rewards account for an additional $235 off! This brought the price down to $1264.99 before tax. Progress!
That’s not the whole story though. Kroger was also offering 4x Fuel Points on Gift card purchases (instead of the normal 2x), so I bought $1350 worth for a total of 5,400 fuel points! Tip: Go for larger denomination cards, many stores have a limit to the number of cards they will take online (for Sears it’s 15 gift cards). In Kroger’s program, a thousand points gets you $1 off per gallon of gas on 1 fill up (up to $35), so this is worth approximately $189 off gas over 6 fill-ups. Note: They will expire so we got all of our gas at Kroger for a month or two.
Final key steps: I shopped through eBates for 5% cash back ($63.25) on my purchase and used my Shop Your Way Rewards number at checkout, for an additional 1% back ($12.64) in rewards to spend at Sears. Once my purchase was complete, I mailed off for a $75 rebate on energy efficient fridges from my local utility.
After taking into account all the rewards and bonuses my $2199.99 fridge actually cost………..
-$700.00 (sale price)
-$235.00 (coupons applied)
-$63.25 (cashback from ebates)
-$12.64 (rewards back to spend at Sears)
-$189.00 (off of gas at Kroger Stations)
-$75.00 (rebate from utility company)
$925.10 (58% savings!!)
This was still a huge budget decision for us, but I am happy knowing that I saved as many of our hard earned pennies as possible. This is a highly rated, functional appliance for our family and we saved almost 60% on the purchase! We could have gotten a $1000 fridge for our $1000 budget, but with a little time effort and planning we got a $2000 one for the same price.
Do you have any other tried and true methods for saving on appliances? Have you used any of the tips above to save big?