Local News and Information
You’ve probably heard a recurring phrase recently if you’re shopping for pretty much anything, “Prices are up because of COVID.” The higher prices shoppers are experiencing are largely due to surging demand and COVID-related delays as companies struggle to increase supply and hire employees. However, there are some ways to save money as prices continue to rise.
The current major appliance shortage could last until the end of the year due to production and supply chain slowdowns during the pandemic. That leaves homeowners facing higher prices and long waits for appliances including washing machines, dryers, refrigerators and freezers.
Before you shop for appliances, consider which features you must have versus those that are less essential.
Also, comparison shop at independent retailers who may offer comparable prices and better service than big-box stores. “Service and attention to detail are two of the biggest reasons to go with an independent appliance store,” says Chris Swain, Regional Manager of Siano Appliances. “At a big-box store, you’re just a number. With an independent retailer you get treated better and have a personal relationship with your sales professional and the delivery team.”
Internet and Telecom
Recently, providers have started to raise prices and impose data caps once again. To cap rising cell phone prices, consider switching to a lower-cost plan. Check with your internet provider to see if they offer a discounted cell service/internet bundle. And consider cutting the cable-TV cord and going with streaming services instead to save.
Low-income families, families that experienced job losses or furloughs and some others may qualify for discounts on internet service and equipment through the federal Emergency Broadband Benefit program. Visit https://getemergencybroadband.org/ to see if you qualify.
If you’re shopping for a television right now, lucky you! According to the Consumer Reports Best Time to Buy guide, September, November, December and January are the best months to buy TVs. This is due to holiday sales and the release of new models in January. Many stores will price match or even beat a competitor’s price, so be sure to do your homework and shop around before you buy.
For a list of appliance dealers, internet/telecom providers and other home professionals in the Chattanooga area, visit the membership directory at www.HBAGC.net.