Why Luxury Appliances Are Worth Adding to Your Sales Floor

When it comes to luxe, specialty stores have the edge

By Michael McPeek, Contributor

The following blog appeared on TWICE.com and is reposted here with the publication’s permission.

It’s commonly said that the kitchen is the heart of any home and that’s generally true.

It happens on a day-to-day basis as families prepare meals and kids do homework, and it seems that everyone congregates in the kitchen for conversation on every topic imaginable. Even social gatherings tend to migrate to the kitchen as hosts and hostesses prepare food and drink.

Kitchen gatherings are traditional but there are a couple of relatively recent technological trends that emphasize the kitchen as a gathering place. They include the rapidly expanding availability of smart appliances and the desire for luxury appliances. Smart appliances are becoming the norm even in moderately priced kitchens. Beyond that, though, high earners with a passion for haute cuisine have created an emerging market for the best of the best.

Why Are Luxury Appliances Worth the Price?
The word “luxury” implies high cost and luxury appliances certainly live up to that presumption. They’re generally several times the price of more mainstream products but there are advantages that make the price acceptable to many consumers. First is their durability. Typical household appliances just don’t last as long as they used to. But it’s not uncommon for luxury appliances to last three or more times longer than their more modest counterparts.

See: BrandSource Embracing the Luxe Appliance Biz

When it comes to selling a home, those equipped with well-known luxury appliances have a distinct advantage in the marketplace. Real estate giant Zillow found that houses that list specific luxury brand appliances in their ads sell both quicker and for a higher price than those that don’t.

Most important, to those who love to cook, high-end appliances simply work better. They feature higher and more consistent heat settings and ovens are generally better insulated.

Expert Sales and Service Are Critical
Retailers that specialize in major appliance are often the best suited to meet the demands of luxury appliance buyers. Though discriminating buyers of luxury appliances often do their preliminary research online, when it comes to making the final purchase decision, specialty stores have the edge. Consumers demand expert sales advice when buying high big-ticket appliances, and are not likely to be satisfied by a salesperson who can’t readily answer their questions and offer valuable guidance.

Service, too, is a major issue for luxury appliances. Factory service is unavailable for most brands in most areas, so the retailer who makes a point of offering top quality service after the sale is attractive to buyers.

Related: Summit to Spotlight Super Premium Appliances

Features You Can Expect from Luxury Appliances
When it comes to features, mass market appliances can’t compete with luxury brands. While not an all-inclusive list, these are some of the most alluring attributes:

  • Larger and variable sizes. In a typical American kitchen, the range is often just 30 inches wide. Ranges offered by luxury manufacturers come in 36, 48, and even 60-inch widths.
  • Column-style refrigeration. This is a popular configuration among luxury brands. Rather than buying an integrated refrigerator, separate columns function independently as refrigerators, freezers, and wine and beverage coolers.
  • Heating options: A dizzying array of cooking surfaces is available on many luxury ranges, cooktops, and range tops. Some are available with a combination of gas and induction burners plus griddles and grills. French tops are available from Wolf, Blue Star and La Cornue. This feature lets you cook with several pans at different temperatures on the same surface unit. Additionally, La Cornue offers the option of a teppanyaki surface which allows for cooking directly on an iron plate, reminiscent of “hibachi”-style Japanese restaurants. And SKS, a premium brand of LG, has a sous vide cooker built into its 48-inch pro range.
  • Sub-Zero refrigerators feature air filtration and an air scrubber that removes ethylene gasses that are emitted by many fruits and vegetables. Reducing these gasses keeps produce fresh longer.
  • Convection and steam ovens are now offered by most manufacturers.
  • Many manufactures offer wide color choices as well as other aesthetic features. Standouts in design are Gaggenau and La Cornue. BSH’s Gaggenau brand is designed by Bang & Olufsen, the famous Danish modern designers who created audio gear in the 1960s that still looks futuristic today. La Cornue styling is in a class by itself. Though very expensive, their offerings are perfect if cost is no object and style reigns supreme.

See also: AVB’s Chad Evans Talks Luxe Appliances

The products featured in this article are true luxury in nature. For consumers who want the best in smart technology without the extravagant prices, the emerging category of affordable luxury appliances may be a better choice.

Michael McPeek was a longtime staffer at TopTenReviews and is a contributor to fellow Future Inc. publication TWICE Magazine.