Skip the Skip
Over the last 13 years, The Used Kitchen Company has recycled thousands of used and ex-display kitchens from showrooms and private homes, helping to divert tonnes of secondhand kitchens from landfill.
Looeeze Grossman started the company when internet selling was still a relatively new phenomenon. ‘I was asked if it would be possible to sell a kitchen online’, Looeeze tells us. ‘I soon realised that hundreds of thousands of tonnes of waste were being produced each year by people discarding perfectly reusable kitchens.’
RIPPING OUT KITCHENS
During the renovation process, builders tend to rip up old kitchens and throw them in the skip. ‘These kitchens are often very new, and equipped with stone worktops and high-end appliances’, Looeeze tells us. ‘All these materials make a kitchen highly reusable and resaleable.’
For Looeeze, selling an old kitchen seemed an obvious way for homeowners to make cash to put towards their new kitchen project. ‘Buying a secondhand kitchen directly could be an even better way of getting your hands on a cheap high-end kitchen’, she explains.
By selling kitchens online through The Used Kitchen Company (TUKC), Looeeze has created a way for both buyers and sellers to recycle their kitchens and make money in the process.
On launching TUKC, Looeeze discovered that kitchens in showrooms are frequently replaced with new displays. She found that existing kitchens were either sent directly to landfill or placed in storage, never to be seen again.
TUKC has now disrupted this cycle, and sells for over 650 showrooms across the country. The discounts are huge: the average ex-display kitchen is sold with 50-70% off its RRP, with used kitchens even further reduced.
FINDING NEW HOMES
TUKC has over 18,000 registered buyers on its website, so Looeeze can usually find an old kitchen a new home. ‘We have sold a number of celebrity kitchens’, she tells us, ‘whose owners have loved the idea of their old kitchens being saved from landfill and finding happy homes.’
Every kitchen can be viewed in person, even if it has already been dismantled. Once a buyer has been found, the process of relocating a kitchen normally goes very smoothly, and the kitchen can often be delivered within days of purchase.
TUKC works with a number of independent kitchen fitters, who will carefully and professionally dismantle the kitchen and deliver it. ‘We normally sell kitchens as a whole’, Looeeze explains, ‘but we may sometimes sell high-end, top-of-the-range large appliances separately, like a Wolf range cooker or a Sub-Zero fridge.’