Posted by Alicia Sell
I have been working away on the bathroom remodel (excited to show you the results in a couple of weeks!) and through this process I have been reviewing a lot of different options for buying bathroom fixtures and a few other things for around the house. We did look at our go-to home improvement stores like Lowe’s and Home Depot. They have some nice stuff, but we wanted to try something different.
Enter my first shopping experience on Wayfair.
I will preface this review by saying that I do not receive any benefits for reviewing Wayfair or any of their other retail brands like Joss and Main, Birch Lane, etc. This is strictly a review of my first experience.
There were some pros and cons for shopping on Wayfair, and some hard lessons learned. Overall I would say it was a positive experience and I would use Wayfair again. In fact, I have used them and Joss and Main for another project and had great success. But there are some things to keep in mind when shopping on Wayfair to make your experience positive.
So, let’s start with the good:
- I LOVE the variety they offer and they have really good search options to narrow down what you are looking for. I found some lighting that I loved and wasn’t finding anything like it at our local stores (pictures to come soon!)
- The prices are good and they have lots of sales. Many times the prices were better than the big box stores.
- The products I purchased were high quality, and, for the price, they exceeded my expectations. This was initially a concern for me because I wasn’t able to see and touch the products, but I read the reviews and the product details to make sure I was getting what I wanted. I was pleasantly surprised at how nice the products really were!
- Free shipping. Need I say more? If there wasn’t free shipping, I wouldn’t have even considered Wayfair. Full disclosure – it is free shipping for items over $50, but it would be kind of hard to keep it under $50, so I don’t see this as a big problem. The free shipping was a HUGE money saver!
- Returns are really easy. Yes, I had a few returns (details below) but the process was quick.
Now for lessons learned:
- Read the descriptions carefully. I can’t stress this enough. Really read them, don’t just skim them. Sometimes it is the details left out of the description that are important. For example, I found this beautiful Delta faucet for the bathtub.
The price was unbelievable. Every other faucet advertised with it was twice as expensive, and not nearly as nice. I hadn’t planned on purchasing a faucet for the tub, but it matched the sink faucets, so I thought it would be worth the extra money to get it.
When it arrived, I opened the box and there sat the beautiful faucet. Oddly, the handles were missing.
I checked the order again. I reread the product description. Nowhere in the description did it say that there no handles included. The picture displayed showed the faucet with the handles. Turns out, that was why it was so inexpensive – because it was just the faucet. When I closed the box lid, it said it on the cover (see picture below):
I was going to return it, but low and behold, this was the only item I had purchased that was final sale and not returnable. So, we were stuck with it. I thought it wasn’t a big deal and we could find handles easily. Turns out, you can only use the handles specifically designed for that faucet and they were VERY expensive. You have to buy a special installation kit that was ALSO very expensive. And…the real kicker…it isn’t any easy switch out with our old faucet. We had to have it professionally installed because it required some serious plumbing alterations that exceeded what we knew how to do ourselves. So, sadly, this ended up being our most expensive (and unnecessary) purchase for the bathroom. It was our budget buster. Lesson learned.
- Don’t trust the pictures of items. Sometimes the pictures don’t match the item description. Trust the item description! And seriously read every detail. I made the mistake of trusting the picture, and I got the wrong finish for the sink faucets. The pictures were of chrome sinks, but the description was for brushed nickel. It was easy to exchange for the right finish, but delayed the project by a week and there were some costs associated with returns.
- Read the reviews carefully. We originally bought two identical rugs for our dining room and living room (no it wasn’t part of the bathroom project, but again…why not just tack it on?)
It was exactly what we wanted. I checked the reviews and a couple of people commented that the pattern was pretty from far away, but when you get too close (like in the same room close) it makes you dizzy. I didn’t trust those reviews and went with it. Wow. Within an hour of unrolling the carpets we had to roll them back up and repackage. The pattern made my entire family dizzy to the point of having headaches! We replaced the carpets with the rug pictured below (Harlow (or Wanda) Rug by NuLoom – not at all the same style, mind you) and we love them! They are so soft underfoot and we love the texture. It ended up being even better than I had hoped.
4. Returns are expensive. My purchase mistakes came with a price. The return process was easy, but you have to pay for all returns. This ended up costing us quite a bit because we were returning two rugs and two sink faucets. Having said that, if you learn from my mistakes – you won’t have to make returns (or at least a lot fewer than we did).
I hope you give Wayfair a try for your next home remodel project because they really do have some fantastic options. I have since used them and not had to return anything.
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