Starting again, what you need and what you don't

Getting divorced means that you will almost certainly have to replace a substantial amount of your household goods.  At least half of your stuff has probably been lost in the division of spoils.

toasterYou may have a freezer but no fridge, a tumble dryer but no washing machine or a toaster but no kettle. Choosing and making a decision from amongst the multitude of products on offer is bewildering and can be immensley time consuming.

Your aim should be to replace your stuff at the best possible price with the least possible effort.  It is all too easy to spend hours agonising between to almost identical washing machines.  It just ain't worth it. 

The absolute essentials
At a minimum you will need a cooker (or a hob and a separate oven), a fridge, a washing machine, a kettle and a vacuum cleaner. A freezer, even a small one is extremely useful but it is possible to live without one.  Tumble dryers and dishwashers are certainly not essential if you have a limited budget to spend on household appliances.  They also use lots of energy. 

Price is probably paramount 
Household appliances vary wildly in price from very cheap to incredibly expensive.  You should have a good idea of kettlehow much you have in your budget to spend on a new fridge or a cooker for example and if money is short ask yourself whether you really need a microwave as well as a cooker.  It may be a good idea to spend more on a half decent stove and forgo the microwave if the alternative is a cheap and possibly nasty cooker and a cheaper and even less wonderful microwave.

How to go about buying your new stuff
The thing you need most to help you make a choice is information.  Just what sort of vacuum cleaner or electric hob do I need?  You will never get the answer from the willing but totally vacant salesperson in the out of town shed electrical retailer.  They can tell you no more than is written on the price ticket.

What you need is a good department store, preferably John Lewis where the sales people are both interested in your custom and know about what they are selling.  Decide on the appliances you need, choose a favourite plus an OK alternative and make a note of the model number and their prices.  Smile, say thank you and leave.

Then check out those precise products on line and make your choice on price alone.  Don't forget delivery costs, sometimes these are included.  You will be suprised quite often the department store is the same price as the shed and online retailers.  Price comparison sites can also help find you the best prices on all types of appliances but recent publicity has suggested that they don't always give the whole story.

Style or what does it look like? 
There is no doubt that we are all living in an increasingly style conscious age. The plethora of household makeover programmes on television and the multitude of books on the subject mean that many of us are now no longer content with mere functionality.  We now want our toaster to say something about us - that we are cool, visually aware and enjoying a particular type of lifestyle and not just a life.  Can a toaster really be that knowing of your lifestyle and still make good toast?

Probably best to stick to finding a toaster that actually does a decent job at making consistent toast and then consider the aesthetics of the toaster itself.  

Don't forget energy efficiency
Make a conscious decision if you are looking for new appliances to buy the most energy efficient.  For instance your washing machine needs to be AAA rated: A for energy efficiency, A for spin efficiency and A for wash performance.

Now you will have a glow of satisfaction knowng that you will be doing your bit to help in the fight against global warming so you can now get on with your new life with a clear conscience.



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