If you’ve ever taken the cheap route on garbage bags or diapers, the mess you ended up with probably led you to not repeat that purchase decision. While generic brands can save your household significant money over the course of a year, there are plenty of times when shelling extra for a national brand pays off in the long run. Here’s our list of generic home improvement products that will leave you disappointed.
Deck Stain: If you invite your friends over for a “deck staining party” they’re likely to find something else better to do…like clipping their mother-in-law’s toenails. There’s definitely a reason that composite decking is gaining popularity with homeowners, even though it’s more expensive. Keep the duration between deck staining to a maximum with a quality, reliable brand. (We highly recommend Penofin® which is made of Brazilian Rosewood Oils. It is 100% sustainable, petroleum free oil finish with no heavy metal compounds or odors.)
Paint: If you browse the paint aisle at your local hardware store, it’s easy to be overwhelmed with the options at a wide array of price points. Want to know a secret? The cheaper brands cost less because they are thinned down with water. The result is a paint that takes more coats to cover and chips and fades sooner than better brands. Unless you’ve got an infinite amount of spare time…don’t!
Gutters: Cheaply made gutters are susceptible to clogs which can cause water to spill over your gutter and pool on the ground below. This can result in damage to your shrubs; lead to surface erosion; and seep into your foundation causing cracks and basement flooding. Water can also spill behind the gutter causing damage to the wood or your soffit and fascia. If you have add-on toppers, helmets or hoods that are attached to your roof and hang over your gutters, they are usually held in place by screws and nails fastened into your roof. Putting holes in your roof can cause leaks and may void your roof warranties. (Shameless plug-opt for LeafGuard Gutters, the only one-piece, seamless system to earn the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval. They keep leaves and debris out of your gutters preventing water damage from clogs and you will never have to get on a ladder again. They come with a LIFETIME guarantee, unlike any other gutter system on the market.)
Carpet: Not all carpet is created equally! Skimping on quality can leave you with carpet that has ripples, sheds when you vacuum it, stains easily and wears down in high traffic areas. Because a major expense associated with carpeting is actually installing it, it’s best to go with a reputable brand, from a reliable manufacturer, so that you don’t end up swapping out your carpet sooner than you’d like to because it’s become an eye sore.