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Buying Online or from a Big Box Store?

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Big Box stores make it tempting to purchase budget hearth products like discount wood stoves and fireplaces, but these companies offer little in the way of customer service and industry experience. Employees at the Big Box stores lack the expertise and knowledge of features, components and designs of hearth products. They know general topics and can answer few questions on how these products work, often leaving customers feeling confused or misguided.

Buying online from someone other than a professional hearth store can also leave much to be desired. If you are able to chat or speak with the online salesperson they usually don’t know much about what they are selling and will certainly not be familiar with details of your project. Once the stove or fireplace is delivered you will need to arrange for a proper installation that will not endanger your family or void any manufacturers warrantees. Many reputable manufacturers only honor warranties that have been installed by trained professionals.

Without some mechanical expertise and knowledge of appropriate codes, installing a stove or fireplace is usually NOT a Do-It-Yourself type of project!

On the other hand, a specialty hearth store knows in-depth details on the difference between the models they sell and what makes one unit different than another. The customer should feel like they have had an excellent experience and received  a quality hearth appliance at a great value instead of just the lowest priced product on the shelf.  Many specialty retailers will carry lower priced models like the big box stores.  However they also carry many additional units that offer much better quality and performance.  And if you need a professional installation, you won’t have to look any further.
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A Real Bargain is About Much More Than Just Price!

As the premier network of brick and mortar hearth stores, we strive to provide the best deal possible on fireplaces, inserts, stoves and accessories. But what exactly does a good deal entail? Generally, people consider getting products at a low price as a “good deal”.  But as most of us know, it shouldn’t stop there. While price is certainly a consideration, the quality, the design and the service after the sale should not be overlooked when searching for the “perfect deal”.

Quality needs to be more than a worthless buzz word.  It needs to mean “built-better”, “more reliable”, “higher performing” and “longer lasting”. As with any heating appliance, the quality of the equipment will directly impact your satisfaction with your buying decision. Hearth products come in a wide range of prices.  The quality of the product ultimately determines how expensive it is. Quality hearth products may cost a bit more, but they offer impeccable construction and sturdy materials to ensure longevity, reliability and top performance. On the other hand, inexpensive units are generally constructed with less expensive, flimsy materials and components that will wear out or fail. While choosing the cheapest model may seem like a good “deal”, the unit may not be worth the money saved when it has to be replaced due to poor quality. Spending a little more money on a quality product can ensure that your fireplace, insert, or stove will last for years to come.  This ends up being a much better value and investment than a cheaper alternative.

Low price is just one element you should look for in your new fireplace, stove or insert. Remember that quality, design, longevity, performance and reliability will make or break a “good deal”.   Buying a quality hearth product from us at a fair price will save you the trouble of costly  maintenance and/or replacement down the road.

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