Why there’s a shortage of appliances – and how to get your hands on one

shortage of appliances

There’s a shortage of appliances right now – and you probably already know this if you’ve been renovating. Often, you’ll find that manufacturers have waiting lists that are months long and back orders that are on hold almost indefinitely. Here, we explain what you should do.

Yes, the current shortage of appliances is a headache, and not just for you: for retailers and manufacturers too. But of course, we sympathise as we know what it’s like to visualise your dream kitchen, so not being able to realise it is a pain in the proverbial. Luckily, there are things you can do to ensure you’re not impacted too badly.

We’ve put together a list of ways to deal with the shortage of appliances. Photography: iStock.

But firstly, why is this happening?

Why is there a shortage of appliances, you ask? Well, while Brexit probably hasn’t helped, it’s largely to do with the global pandemic. Covid has caused huge problems in international supply chains, creating issues at pretty much every stage. These include shortages of materials causing the production of essential parts and chips to shudder to a halt. Then there are workers getting ill with Covid and entering enforced isolation, a shortage of lorry drivers, and also a lack of port workers who would typically unload white goods.  

There’s also high demand and store closures. All this combined has created a perfect storm when it comes to getting appliances built from the correct components and shipped to your door. But relax: there are things you can do – not to solve the shortage of appliances itself, but to fix your current inability to get your hands on your perfect appliance.

Basically, the shortage of appliances is Covid’s fault. Photography: iStock.

So what can you do about the shortage of appliances?

Firstly, be prepared

You’re probably already prepared for installation waiting times to take longer, as we discussed on our podcast. Well, we’re sorry to say that wait times for appliances might be even longer than this. But forewarned is forearmed, so if you’re planning a new kitchen, it’s wise to choose and order your appliances first. Also, consider altering your timescale if you’re doing a full house renovation, so that the kitchen is fitted last.

Secondly, check out independent retailers

Sure, massive retailers might be out of stock, but little unknown out-of-the-way retailers might still have the product you’re after. You might have to scroll to the fifth page of Google for once, but it’ll be worth it when you find your dream appliance there. There also might be the odd physical store that doesn’t have a website but holds physical stock. So even though there’s a shortage of appliances, do your research and it might just pay off.

Check out indie retailers and you might be pleasantly surprised. Photography: iStock.
Thirdly, put your name on the waiting list and get notified

Many retailers offer you the option to sign up to the waiting list for out of stock appliances. Just enter your email address and they’ll alert you as soon as your perfect appliance is back in stock. Of course, this is only an option if you don’t need the appliance immediately. Also, when your appliance comes back in stock, be quick and snap it up! The retailer might only have minimal stock during this shortage of appliances.

Then, re-evaluate your options

So you’ve got your heart set on your dream appliance. But if there’s no way of getting it, surely an alternative appliance is better than no appliance? In which case, have a look at different options. You might even find an appliance you like better, one that’s very similar, or one that is cheaper.

Lastly, how about repairing your current appliance?

Of course, a new appliance is the dream. But if you can’t get your hands on one, why not repair your current appliance in the meantime? It’s better for the environment, cheaper, and you might just fall in love with it all over again!

Want more? Check out our smart home kitchen edit which is full of gorgeous tech-savvy appliances to make your life easier.

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