We have many clients who have researched material items on line that they wish to incorporate into their remodel. Researching the items is one thing but purchasing the product is another. In our experience, it's far more beneficial to go through a local supplier in which we have a relationship and one that we can have recourse with if the product arrives defective or even late. In the past, we have purchased items the client has selected from an on-line supplier. However, we caution them about issues that can arise which we have seen first-hand. Here are some examples of our own experiences:
- Arrival of oven with broken glass front
- Missing parts (typically from lighting and plumbing fixtures)
- Measurements on website are different than the measurements of the actual product
- Scratched or dented items
- Incorrect finish (i.e. chrome instead of brushed)
- Product indicated on line that it was in-stock but wasn't after purchasing
Returning items is no easy task either or, for that matter, getting a hold of a decision maker who can correct the problem.
If you feel strongly about making an online purchase, be sure to read the user ratings, and most importantly, check with the Better Business Bureau to see if the company has had any complaints. If you do notice complaints about the company you are investigating, look for if and how the complaint was remedied. The customer service you receive with a local supplier is well worth the small added expense. You may even find something you really like on line, show it to your supplier, and they may carry the product or be able to find something comparable.