Have you ever tried to compare prices on fitted kitchens? Obviously, there are some reasons it might be harder to compare kitchen prices than, say, car insurance. Car insurance is kind of an idea: you’re paying a little to a company each month, and they’ll take on the costs of accidents and the like. The coverage you get might vary, but generally, the bargain basement insurance will cover the same basic things, whatever the company.
When it comes to comparing kitchen deals, it sometimes seems like companies are happy to keep it as hard as possible to compare prices. They use different materials and designs, and prices change depending on the size of the kitchen, the number of units to install and the length of time it takes to install.
Still, in the midst of all of this confusion and price-based chaos, a shining beacon of hope burns bright on the internet: Kitchen-compare.com. The site lets you pick a style of kitchen (from contemporary, classic Shaker and traditional, along with a range of the most popular colours), and it shows you the ranges and prices that the biggest high street dealers offer.
So say you want a contemporary, cream gloss kitchen. Well, at the moment, the B&Q IT Cream Gloss Slab kitchen costs the least – only £1270 for a 8-piece galley kitchen. The most expensive set is the Wickes 16-piece Smart Range Costa Rica U-model for £6444.
Of course, price is just half the equation. The site also lets you compare quality scores. So of the cream glossy kitchens, the Magnet Purely Range Studio Creme set scores the best, getting 9.1 out of 10, and the Homebase Essential Chancery Cream Gloss gets merely a 5.7 out of 10. And neither of those sets are the cheapest or most expensive at the moment.
This could all change, however. At the beginning of last year, the Telegraph reported that companies including Wickes and Homebase doubled the prices of their kitchens at the first week of November, only to “halve” the prices during post-Christmas sales. The “price establishing” technique is legal, but as Kitchen-compare.com had been monitoring the prices, they were able to alert the press to the changes. A spokesman for Homebase explained it this way:
“As with many of our competitors we do run kitchen promotions at different times of the year, and as a result, at different periods, the price you pay will fluctuate from the base price, dependent on the promotion. We are aware that a number of comparison and price websites don’t take all promotional activity into consideration when showing comparisons of prices. It can look that prices will have been raised whereas in fact, the price that was advertised was based on the promotion at that time.”
So where is the best place to find fitted kitchen deals? Well, the answer isn’t that simple, after all, but at least there are places where you can get a better idea of where the deals are.
Have you bought a fitted kitchen recently? Did you get a real deal, and was it worth it? Let us know below.