A new kitchen is being planned and looking around much of the carcasses
seem similar. Around us we have Wickes, B&Q, Homebase and Howarth Timber.
Howarth seem marginally better but does anyone have any views overall
According to the Which? report (yes, I know):
scores out of 5 for quality and durability of cupboards:
DIY Kitchens: N/A
Ikea: 5, 5
John Lewis: 5, 5
Howdens: 5, 4
Independents: 5, 5
Magnet: 4, 4
Wickes: 4, 4
Benchmarx: 4, 4
B&Q: 3, 3
Homebase: 3, 3
Wren: 4, 3
but it isn't just, about that is it
Most fitters will tell you not to buy Ikea because they are hard to fit (not
having a void at the back for pipe work, I understand)
and when I looked at the choices in the Benchmarx catalogue, I thought "is
that it!" and put it in the bin.
and have you seen the joke prices of appliances at Magnet?
I have a namesake who is a kitchen fitter. He tried to get the
email address I already had, so was offered an alternative
with the name appended with a '2', which he obviously
He deals with Howdens who often forgot the '2', so I got his
estimates showing his 80% discount on retail prices ...
Perhaps Magnet's prices have a similar mark-up?
Howdens don't have retail prices as they wont sell to consumers
they just have some made up price and then their final Trade price.
It seems (I have no personal experience) that the fitter can charge any
price he likes between the two at a level that he thinks he can "get away
I doubt that anyone gets away with "full price", there's too much
competition. No-one who has other offers of 4-5K is going to pay 15K for
Their price are retail and, the last time I looked they don't discount
appliances. The price you see is the price you pay, even when there's sale
Wickes "price matched" their appliances. Quite surprised me how much that
took off their headline price.
It's telling that Wren's price comparison:
claims the average Howdens price is a discount of 76% over list price and
uses that as its baseline. So that's a ballpark to use when calculating the
'real' cost of a Howdens kitchen.
Series six stuff was seriously expensive in the shops but the wife was
paying out of her pension lump sum.
I like the pyrolytic cleaning.
The microwave/oven is a bit odd.. power settings jump from 600W to 1000W
with nothing in between.
I also don't like that you can't use silicon bakeware as it does the
baking sensor in.
The ability to set precise temps over a wide range is useful, I use the
big oven to dry out 3D printing filaments and to anneal printed bits.
You need to consider these DIY things if buying new appliances.
The dishwasher has a handy feature in that the door opens if you push it
which is handy when the wife has arthritis in the fingers. Its also
completely integrated and projects an image of what its doing on the
floor as it has no visible display.
Yes, both those we also find useful. Ours has no cutlery basket,
instead there's a third tray right at the top in which you lay out the
cuttles. In this way cutlery items do not abrade each other during
washing which f'rinstance helps knives retain their cutting edges.
"I am enclosing two tickets to the first night of my new play; bring a
friend.... if you have one." - GB Shaw to Churchill "Cannot possibly
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