Friday, February 20, 2009

Appliance Rebates in Silver (Linings)

I received this today as a press release. Seems like everyone is trying to find a silver lining in the Economic Stimulus Plan. (as for myself, I'll take all the silver linings I can get...)

The Association of Home Appliance Manufacturers is applauding the House Appropriations Committee for its approval of an economic stimulus provision that includes $300 million to provide consumers with rebates for buying ENERGY STAR products to replace old appliances.
This provision would provide the funding necessary to implement a consumer rebate program authorized under the Energy Policy Act of 2005, to be administered by the states.
"A consumer rebate program will result in dramatic savings for consumers," AHAM said, noting that the rebate would offset the cost differential between ENERGY STAR and non-ENERGY STAR appliances.
"Funding this federal-state appliance rebate program will benefit consumers by reducing the cost of ENERGY STAR appliances and providing them with additional discretionary income by way of reduced utility bills," said AHAM president Joseph McGuire.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Is Now the Time to Remodel?

In a word, yes. The current economic climate has created a positive side effect for homeowners: cheaper remodeling prices. At no other point in my 16-year career have I seen so many manufacturers’ incentives at one time. No matter the project, you will find savings in today’s market. Here’s just a short list of savings you can expect to see:

Kitchens, baths, closets, libraries. No matter the project, manufacturers are skipping price increases and giving away free upgrades. They are adding more design styles, color palettes, and accessory options at competitive pricing. I even know of one supplier that has temporarily reduced prices by 10% for everything. You can even earn a free vacation when you purchase from another cabinet manufacturer.

I don’t think you can find any better bargain price right now than countertops. No matter the material, you can enjoy great savings.
Granite: you can find the best deals in a decade right now. Pricing for some common granites have been slashed by a third to one half.
Quartz: while not experiencing the same cost savings as granites, the quartz manufacturers are adding free sinks and other incentives.
Solid Surface: Manufacturers like Corian and Hi-Macs have priced select colors to be competitive with lesser materials. Corian is also offering 50% off o select sinks and Hi-Macs is throwing in a free sink at no charge.

Package deals, rebates, free delivery. No matter which price point you are interested in, you’re going to see some sort of bargain being offered to you. Every manufacturer and appliance dealer is courting your interest.

As far as I’m concerned, this is far and away the best deal you can find right now. At one point, homeowners were waiting as much as 16 weeks or more to retain installation labor for their remodeling project, but not anymore. The best artisans are available and willing to work competitively. Bargain-priced materials can be made to sparkle under the influence of a skilled craftsman, making the most out of a limited budget.

Design Services & Project Management
If an individual designer is selling you materials for your remodeling project, chances are good that he or she is willing to reduce or even eliminate fees that would usually be expected for both design services and/or project management work. Even if your designer isn’t selling you any products, negotiating a better fee structure is pretty realistic right now.

So if you’re interested in making your remodeling dollars go as far as possible, bargain season is upon you. Your investments may not be giving you the return you’ve been wishing for – maybe it’s time to invest in your comfort, your family, and your life.