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Consumer Reports offers tips on shopping for large appliances | Home/Garden – New Orleans, Louisiana

New Orleans, Louisiana 2021-05-31 05:30:00 –

The mask may have come off in many places, but if you are currently buying a large appliance, it may feel like it was in the early days of the COVID-19. This is because the supply of major kitchen and laundry equipment, which was hit by supply chain and manufacturing backups last spring, has not yet returned to normal at large supermarkets and independent retailers.

David MacGregor, a consumer electronics industry analyst at Longbow Research, said:

Retailers have been waiting for orders from manufacturers for five to six weeks or more, he says, but only a slight improvement from the seven to eight-week stagnation last spring. At the same time, many consumers are hesitant to buy.

“We don’t see any significant price cuts on Memorial Day,” said Mark Davis, an analyst for large appliances at market research firm Gap Intelligence.

In fact, experts expect supply shortages to continue for the foreseeable future, so don’t expect prices to fall soon.

“Industry officials estimate that availability issues will continue until the end of 2021,” says MacGregor.

Why hold up?

This season’s backlog is due to some new issues with the appliance supply chain, in addition to manufacturer delays that began early in the pandemic.

Parts manufacturers around the world still maintain COVID-related safety protocols, which could limit production. A shortage of shipping containers, a blockage in a port on the west coast, and a fluke in March blocked major transport routes, but the problem remains unresolved.

“The situation got better and then someone decided to block the Suez Canal,” says Ken Miele, CEO of the New Jersey Appliance Dealer Cooperative.

Demand for new appliances rose last spring and remains high as many homeowners replace or upgrade refrigerators, freezers, washing machines and other high-value items. Unexpected acceleration of home buying and construction contributes to buying enthusiasm. Tax refunds and stimulus measures have further boosted spring spending.

“Demand for major appliances is higher than ever,” says Davis.

What you can do

Memorial Day discounts (usually 35% to 40% off the manufacturer’s suggested retail price) will be reduced this year, MacGregor said. Also, in general, promotions don’t apply to so many products.

“Why do consumers wait 5-6 weeks in line to get a discount on a product they buy?” He asks.

This does not mean that you cannot find the right one.

“If you really need a fridge, it’s not as dire as people have to go without a fridge,” says Davis. “But they may not be able to get it at the price they want to pay.”

However, you can continue to negotiate other aspects of your purchase, such as shipping charges. Installation and disposal; related parts such as hoses and electrical cords.

“Some of our independents do that,” says Miele. “Our employees want a business, so we make our customers happy.”

Here’s a quick breakdown of the tactics, whether you need an immediate replacement or you can wait a bit.

You need it now

  • Enhance your search on large websites. If you want to shop at a major chain store, you can use a search tool to quickly find items that are in stock locally and currently available for delivery.
  • Consider replacement. A recent search for Bosch dishwashers found that many worked well in CR tests, but the popular stainless steel model was not available at the local Home Depot. But the same model of white was in stock.
  • Try an independent dealer. Independent companies can often not only be worth the price of a bin, but at least as good a supply as a major chain. In addition, they usually do not rely on third-party delivery services, so they can more accurately determine when to receive a machine. You can also offer benefits such as in-house services and rentals while waiting for a new machine.

You can wait

  • Sign up for big store alerts. Some chains, such as Home Depot and Lowe’s, allow you to set up notifications to be sent when your favorite model arrives.
  • Please register on the waiting list of the independent dealer. “We have a good supply of products,” says Miele. “I’m processing my orders more slowly than before. If I go shopping today, I’ll have the washer and dryer in 4-6 weeks.”

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