Everybody wants to be happy with their brand new fully fitted kitchen.
Everybody wants to be in a position where theyre gazing at their new kitchen in wide-eyed glee, very happy indeed – not even thinking about the guarantee.
Unfortunately some guarantees arent worth the paper that theyre written on. They don’t mean anything atall.
In the past, some kitchen companies have offered a guarantee for 25 years. When analysing the small print it did however culminate in meaning that as soon as the kitchen flat-pack arrived at your house, the guarantee itself proved to be as useful as a chocolate teapot.
Im sure that some of you would like a chocolate teapot, but that isnt the point! Too many people think about a kitchen guarantee before purchase and not enough people think about ensuring that theyre happy with the kitchen once its fitted.
Too many people arent happy with their new kitchen. Small things are wrong with it. The plinth isnt fitted on properly. Doors are squint. You phone up the kitchen company and theyll phone you back when they have a fitter available. One finally comes back to your house not the same fitter as before. He doesnt have the right equipment with him to sort out your problem he promises to come back later. He doesnt. You phone back the kitchen company. They wont have any more fitters in your area for the next couple of weeks.
Dont waste your time concerning yourself with the length of the guarantee.
A guarantee doesnt matter if the job is done properly to begin with. If you have taken the time to make yourself of all the other Kitchen Secrets, youll have a great knowledge of the domestic kitchen industry. Youll be in charge of when to buy and when to not. If thats the case then you wont have made a reactive decision and suddenly purchased something you might regret in the future.
As soon as you receive delivery of your new kitchen you will be asked to sign that you have received it in satisfactory condition.
A lot of kitchen companies will ask you to accept delivery of the kitchen by yourself. Without the fitters. Dont sign until you are happy with everything. It doesnt matter if the delivery driver is left sitting in his van for half an hour. You have to check to see that the quality of the product is the same as the quality shown to you bythe kitchen designer. You need to check the doors, the worktops and the handles.
A lot of companies also expect another part of the balance payable upon delivery. You need to decide whether this is fair or not.
With regards to the guarantee, what you need to do is isolate everything down to the fitting.
If youre happy with the delivery of your appliances and furniture, then you know that the only thing that could go drastically wrong is the fitting of your kitchen. This is why you need to stay on the right side of your fitters. They have total control over whether your final product will be a success or failure. (refer to Kitchen Secret 20)
However, apart from looking after the kitchen fitters yourself, the only significant lever that you have over the kitchen company is the value of your outstanding balance due. Were not talking about having self-employed fitters and you paying them directly after the kitchen is fitted were talking about actual cash due to the kitchen company. If youve already paid the kitchen company much more than half of the cash due to them, their incentive to correct any problems diminishes. You need to keep that lever as significant as possible.
There is one other way of improving your guarantee and it relates to Kitchen Secret 19. If you have chosen to purchase your kitchen via the finance package offered from the kitchen company, you will probably have paid a small deposit. Should this be the case, then the finance company tend to back up the guarantee offered by the kitchen company. This does offer increased peace of mind as they would act as an independent body within a dispute and also maintain the guarantee after kitchen company liquidation. However, as we have emphasised already, the best guarantee that you have is to check, double check and check again yourselves that you are happy with everything. Dont rely on anyone else.
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