Like all good stairlifts, Bruno stairlifts are built to last. They also tend to outlive their estimated lifetimes, so there is no shortage of used stairlifts on the market. That being said, how does a new Bruno stairlift compare to a used Bruno stairlift, how do they differ in terms and price and quality, and which is the best option for you?
Benefits of Buying a Used Bruno Stairlift
Many stairlifts are installed to assist individuals who have deteriorating illnesses, as well as to help them during a difficult transition. Once that illness worsens to the point where even a stairlift can't help or the individual moves into a new home or an assisted living facility, it stops serving its purpose and can be sold to a company for repurposing.
It's like buying a reconditioned smartphone. It's not new, but most of the parts are in very good condition and the ones that aren't are replaced for new or nearly new parts.
Pro - Cost: A used stairlift typically costs upwards of $1,500, although it will depend on whether you're buying a straight stairlift or a curved stairlift. The model will also impact the cost, as will the retailer. You can buy used stairlifts everywhere from eBay to certified dealers. The former is more affordable, but the latter will cover installation and may even offer an extended warranty.
Pro - Value: Not only are used Bruno stairlifts much cheaper, but they also provide more value for money. You're not getting something that is fresh out of the box, but as noted above, it's still in very good condition and will do the job that you need it to do.
Con - No Warranty: Bruno stairlifts have a lifetime warranty on major parts (rail, motor, gearbox) and it should apply to a used stairlift as well. However, these warranties are often very limited and won't cover all parts of the stairlift. You may lack the extensive parts and labor warranty that you would get from a new stairlift.
Con - Limited Features: If we go back to the smartphone analogy for a moment, one of the issues with buying a refurbished model is that you're getting something that is probably a few months, or maybe even a few years, old. In the smartphone world, that's a lot of time and a whole list of features could pass you by as a result.
It's a similar story with stairlifts. Even though the technology doesn't advance as quickly, it's not uncommon for used stairlifts to be many years old. As a result, you could still be missing out on certain features and components.
Benefits of Buying a New Bruno Stairlift
Whether you choose a curved stairlift or a straight stairlift, you have a few options at your disposal with Bruno.
The Elan model is the basic one and should be suitable for most users. It comes with a lifetime warranty on major parts and the price begins at $3,000. There is also an Elite model, which is a step up in price, comfort, and capability. The Elite is better suited to obese users as it has a massive weight limit of 400 lbs.
Pro - Customization: A new Bruno stairlift will be designed with your staircase and needs in mind. Your budget will dictate how much freedom you have in this department, but if you have any specific needs, it's easier to fulfill them with a new stairlift.
Pro - Brand New: The fact that you're the first person to use the stairlift is a nice little bonus. It's not worth paying twice the price, for most consumers at least, but it is certainly more satisfying to own something that is fresh out of the box. It appeals to the consumer in all of us.
Con - Price: The cost is really the only downside of owning a new stairlift, but it's a sizeable one. You can reduce it by looking for special offers, but it's never going to be cheaper than the used alternative.
Summary: Buying New or Used Bruno Stairlifts
Despite the benefits provided by used and refurbished stairlifts, the majority of customers prefer to buy new. There is a certain stigma attached to used items, and consumers want to peel back the plastic coatings and inhale the scent of chemically treated fabric. A new stairlift will certainly last longer, but if you're working with a tight budget, that's a luxury you can't afford.
If you only need a stairlift for a short time, such as a period of several months, you may be better off with a rental. If you need it for a couple of years, a used stairlift will be a better fit. If you're looking for something that will be required for 5 or 10 years, it makes sense to think about a new stairlift.
Contrast, compare, and see how far your budget stretches. If you do opt for a used stairlift, always make sure you go through a reputable supplier and ask about existing warranties.