Bricks and money New ways to shop on­line and smart me­ter ad­vice

In­ter­net shop­ping has gone up a gear, with cheaper and more ef­fi­cient ways to make more ma­jor pur­chases. Here’s how…

House Beautiful (UK) - - Contents -


Claim­ing to of­fer sav­ings of up to 30 per cent on com­pa­ra­ble big-name brands, com­pa­nies such as kitchen­col­lec­ are pi­o­neer­ing a dif­fer­ent way of choos­ing a new kitchen. The process puts you in con­trol, with no sales tac­tics. You can send any­thing from your ba­sic kitchen shape to a de­tailed plan on­line, and your kitchen is made to mea­sure.


As well as sav­ing money, you can have a sofa bought on­line cus­tom-built to your re­quire­ments in­clud­ing seat height, cush­ion depth and length. Try de­sign­er­so­ and Al­ways ask for a sam­ple fab­ric swatch to be posted to you so you can check the colour and tex­ture, and be pre­pared to wait for de­liv­ery. It can take up to two months for a hand-built sofa to be made.


Com­pared to show­room prices, there are se­ri­ous sav­ings of up to 70 per cent to be made on showers, baths, van­ity units and ac­ces­sories from sites such as vic­to­ri­ Af­ter-sales ser­vice is cru­cial with plumb­ing, as some of th­ese sav­ings are only pos­si­ble be­cause items are bought in bulk from over­seas sup­pli­ers. Make sure that spare parts and re­place­ments are easy to ob­tain.


Com­pa­nies such as floor­ing­su­per­ mail free sam­ples and prom­ise dis­counts of up to 50 per cent on list prices. Com­pare prices at DIY su­per­stores such as Wickes and B&Q, which of­ten have deals of 10 or 15 per cent off if you pur­chase on­line rather than in-store. In­vest the money you’ve saved on pay­ing for the best fit­ter you can find. See the Na­tional In­sti­tute of Car­pet and Floor­lay­ers’ web­site,, for in­dus­try-rec­om­mended lo­cal trades­peo­ple.


Visit or pho­to­ to have photos printed di­rectly from your mo­bile phone, tablet or lap­top, from ba­sic prints up to huge can­vases. Look for dis­count codes. For be­spoke re­pro­duc­tions of clas­sic paint­ings, mod­ern art, line draw­ings and more, see sur­face­, which can also print im­ages onto splash­backs, lamp­shades, wall­pa­pers and tiles. From £150 for a 500 x 500mm Na­tional Gallery can­vas.


• Look at cus­tomer re­views and check out Trust­pi­lot rec­om­men­da­tions, ad­vises con­sumer ex­pert Jas­mine Bir­tles of mon­ey­mag­ • ’Use a credit card as then you’ll be cov­ered from £100 up to £30,000,’ adds Jas­mine.

• Pay by a se­cure means such as Pay­pal or Ap­ple. • Buy from a cy­ber-safe site. Look for the green pad­lock in the ad­dress bar.

Web­sites can of­fer bet­ter value than the high street

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