Monday, July 15, 2019

The Illusive Appliance

One thing my new abode did not have was a clothes washer and dryer. There were hook ups for such in the kitchen - but no appliances. Looking at the space, I did not want to take up a great deal of valuable real estate in the kitchen. The alternative was a 'stacked' washer/dryer.

When I started looking for such a thing, it was evident I had not been in the appliance market for a while. This was clear when I asked a nice young salesperson in an appliance store if they had stacked washers and dryers. He said they did and led me down an aisle pass the refrigerators, took a right at the ranges, we made our way through the dishwashers, and finally to the washer/dryer section. Proudly, he showed me what they had. 

This was not what I had in mind. No one told me that these days they 'stack' full size washers and dryers. Who knew? Politely I told him I was looking for the space savers, the ones folks in apartments use. He looked at me, "Oh, those?"

"Do you have any?"

"Sure let me show you what we have." He led the way. He stopped and indicated a stacked unit - what I had in mind. However, the price was not - they wanted almost $2,000 for it. 

Taking a deep breathe, I asked, "Are there any less expensive ones or, maybe, used ones?"

"No, mam. Well, let me rephrase that. I have seen new units for as little as $1,200."

My budget did not equate 'as little as' with '$1,200', unless it referred to the price of a new car or trip around the world on the Queen Mary. I thanked him and made my way out of the store. 

Back in my car, I pulled out my phone and searched for 'used space saving washer dryer units' in the area. This revealed several potential stores. The first one I called said they did not have any and did not expect to have any. The man who answered the phone at the second location I called, told me that they had 3 in stock the day before, but they were already sold. "Hard to find those things," he said. I thanked him and rang off.

For the next few days, I scoured Craig's list (there was one listed, but they did not deliver). One constant point of frustration was finding dealers with a web site but at the bottom, in very small print, was written "Due to the size of our business, we do not have a current inventory list on our site. Please come in and see the selection we have." I interpreted this as either 'We don't know what in the Hell we have.' or 'Don's nephew's real good on the internets and such. He put our web site together and we don't have a clue how to edit it.'

Whatever the situation, these units were harder to find than I first thought. Finally, I found a store on the edge of town that said they had 4 used units in stock. Quickly I made my way down there, hoping to procure one of these long sought after units. 

When I walked in the store, I started to pull out my sun glasses. The combination of the white floor, white walls, white ceiling and dozens of white appliances was blinding. I wasn't sure if I had stepped onto some Sci Fi movie set or the domain of Progressive's Flo. The lone sole I could find was a gentleman (David) sitting behind a desk on the phone. He waved and indicated he would be right with me.

While waiting I saw in the corner, a site as rare as a herd of unicorns, 4 space saving washer/dryer stacked units. I noticed 2 had yellow Post-It notes with names and dates written on them. Finally the salesman was off the phone and walking toward me. "Looking for one of those?"

"Yes, is 1 still available?"

"Well 2 are but I have another person coming in this afternoon to look at them."

I looked at the line of units again. They were all the same make and model. The price was extremely reasonable.

As if reading my mind, David offered, "These are all refurbished, come with a 30 day warranty, and a discount on service, should you need one after that."

"Do you deliver?"

"Yes, the price includes delivery."

I looked at the 2 still available and selected one. I followed David back to the desk to complete the paperwork for the sale. Watching him work was painful. It seemed to take him forever to complete a form and make a copy. Finally, he took my debit card. Even then he was flustered that his card reader wasn't working. Well it wasn't until he pulled the card out and inserted it the correct way.

Since they only delivered on Tuesday and Thursday, I made an appointment for the following Tuesday to take delivery. When I finally was able to walk out of the store, I read over my paperwork. I wanted to make sure it in fact said I had purchased a washer/dryer (and not a trash compactor or such), the amount I had paid, and the delivery date.

I could relax, and check this off my list. Finally I had found what I needed at a decent price with a warranty and a delivery date. Now, where could I find some baskets for the shelf in my room?

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