Thursday, July 3, 2014

White is the New Stainless- Our TX Home Makeover Post #11

We had stainless appliances in our TN home- loved them but hated cleaning them. We also lived in an area where high-end was the expected norm- not just in appliances, but in the entire home.  I grew to hate the high-end trap... I wanted to tinker and explore but it's too risky to do that with expensive materials. 

My TN galley kitchen with the stainless appliances that I spent months saving up for... It was the right investment when we built the TN house.
The appliances in this TX house were at the opposite end of the appliance spectrum- black and ancient.  We definitely couldn't give the kitchen a spruce up without replacing them.  
The old microwave/ oven combo

The old oven- not even a digital timer- it was a dial.

'They' told me to replace these with new stainless.  The price tag for all stainless, including the fridge, would have been thousands of dollars.  I will argue this point with anyone, but in most markets, you just aren't going to get a significance ROI on new, high-end appliances on a home you just purchased at market value.  'They' will tell you that stainless appliances are an investment that will pay for themselves, but many times that is not the case.  You should run the numbers yourself on your property before making substantial spends on any home improvements.  

In my case, purchasing and installing $6,000+ worth of appliances was not going to automatically increase property value by the same amount.  Consider also that I live in a neighborhood where the houses sell in a matter of hours instead of months- with and without stainless appliances.  Stainless didn't make sense to me.  In fact, I realized, footing the bill for new appliances wasn't going to be much of an investment for me at all- stainless or not.

We sold our stainless fridge with the TN house and brought our white garage fridge to use in TX temporarily.  Early on in move, I was headed straight into the new-appliances-must-be-matching-stainless trap, but I got frustrated trying to find a new oven that would fit in my small, early 1990s cabinets.  I was also frustrated at the price tags.

So I headed to Craig's list in search of a 27 inch oven... And I found TONS of white appliances on Craig's list as people were dumping them for stainless upgrades almost instantly- many of the appliances are brand new and sold at rock bottom prices. 

I already had a white fridge in good condition, and matching the appliances to it would avoid thousands of dollars in  unnecessary spend.  So I spent a few hundred dollars and got a double oven, microwave, and dishwasher all from one Craigslist listing!

The new microwave installed over the cooktop- looks great with the subway tile!
This 24 inch double oven had hardly been used.

I spent so little on these appliances that we won't feel bad ditching them if we decide to completely remodel the kitchen later (I would like to open it up to the rest of the house eventually).

Here are some tips when buy appliances 2nd hand:
1.  Get serial numbers and check how old the appliances really are.
2.  Be sure to get the mounting hardware and power cords.
3.  Gas or electric- be sure you know what you are wired for before you buy.
4.  Negotiate- most buyers just want these big bulky items out of their garage.  

Tommy & I think we'll move around the country several times over the next 25 years, and I'm not going to spend fortunes with each move to buy new appliances that I hate cleaning... unless running the numbers makes it profitable.  

1 comment:

Purifoy Family said...

Stainless really is a big nuisance to clean! No one told me that!!