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Advice for Selecting a New Television
Advice from Olga Guttag 12jun2020
I have bough a lot of TVs in the past 10 years in all sizes an with all kinds of functionality (I am our family’s designated shopper and my 4 kids all got “adult apartments”). Here are a few things that I do BEFORE I look for the best price:
- Determine the sizes I will take - I often find a great deal on a set that is a couple of inches bigger/smaller than what I thought I need. For example, I saved close to $1,000 by settling for a high end 55” instead of 60” of the same functionality.
- Decide if there are any MUST-HAVE features and list them since it is easy to forget something once you start looking at specific models
- Are there any ABSOLUTELY-NOT features, such as “always on” which records all conversations in the room. I value our privacy, and so I am very careful about what technology I allow in our house.
- I research quality of different models in Consumer Reports, look at Amazon reviews for particular models, and read a few industry-specific reviews (usually found by Google). This tells me what makes to absolutely avoid, and which are top of the line. It also gives me a price range.
- Once I now know what i am looking for, I do a Google search. I have had excellent luck getting TVs through Groupon and Brad’s Deals offers, as well as on Amazon. I did get one set from Open-Box sale at Best Buy, but beware of the warranty - some manufacturers won’t give you “as new” warranty for those sets. Doing all of the preparatory work generally saves me at least couple of hundred $$.
- I ALWAYS buy the maximum length extended service contract for any new set larger than 20” or costing more than $200. Since the contracts are priced based on the price you paid for the set, if you get a bargain on the TV set you will also pay less for the service contracts. Though the common wisdom is that these contracts are a waste of $$, we are a ew hundred $$ ahead of our cost in terms of claims. We were particularly pleased when we got a 50” set replaced by the current model because the old TV was no longer made. This extended the life of that TV by at least 5 years for under $100.