The Couple’s Guide to Agreeing on a New Refrigerator

by Bill Welles

If you remember way back in 2019 before “face-covering” was in our vocabulary and all was well in the world, we wrote an article on the couple's guide to choosing the best laundry appliances. We wanted to follow up that blog to help drive your conversation when shopping for a new refrigeration appliance.

There are many perks to having a significant other to help make decisions with, but when it comes to appliance shopping, there isn’t necessarily a handbook on how to agree on the right model for your home. Luckily, regardless of the stage you’re in, there are a few key conversation-starters to discuss when shopping for any type of appliance to help narrow down your search.

If you and your loved one are ready to embark on your refrigeration journey, follow along for the couple’s guide to agreeing on a new refrigerator.

couple reaching for ingredients inside the fridge

Quick Recap

Before we dive into all things refrigerators, let’s revisit some of the talking points from the couple’s laundry appliances blog: Budget, features, and energy-efficiency.

One of the most important steps to take is to agree on a budget. It’s crucial to set a price range both of you are comfortable with while perusing your new refrigeration appliance. Full-size French door refrigerators can start as low as $1,100 and go all the way up to $10,000 and above, so establishing a feasible budget is the first step to finding the right refrigerator for the kitchen of your dreams.

We all rely on a refrigerator for its practical storage solutions, but the bonus features can be the real selling point. Whether you’re looking for smart features, cooling features for fruits and veggies, customizable fixtures, or a water and ice dispenser, discuss the features you both desire to make your time in the kitchen easier and more enjoyable.

There's much more to being environmentally conscious than recycling our plastics; sometimes it starts with your appliance’s energy use. There are Energy Star Certified refrigerators with enhanced cooling technology and insulation, designed to use 20 percent less energy than current federal standards. This can be a deciding factor if going green is just as important as saving green.

Refrigerator Talking Points

Now that we discussed some general talking points, let’s delve into refrigerator specifics.

Choosing the right refrigerator comes down to passion and practicality. You don’t want to set your heart on a certain style only to discover it won’t work with your kitchen layout or specifications. And considering the average life expectancy of a refrigerator is 10 years with some high-end brands lasting up to 20 years, you probably haven’t purchased a new one in quite some time. You test-drive cars more often than you purchase a new refrigerator, so you’re bound to discover a world of enhanced features, styles, sizes, and brands to choose from.

Luckily, there’s a fridge available for every kitchen space and cook’s need. Discuss the latest models and decide what will best fit your kitchen, food-shopping habits, and your design aesthetic. There are refrigerators with custom columns for a built-in look around your cabinetry, some models have four or five doors, and you can even find a refrigerator with separate pull-out drawers for soda and other beverages.

Whichever model you eventually choose, make sure your choice fits your lifestyle, whether you prefer a refrigerator that’s no-fuss or one that can keep up with your kitchen being the central hub for conversation and entertaining.

couple preparing a meal together in the kitchen

Size Constraints

Refrigerators and refrigerator openings do not come in a one-size-fits-all model. To know what size will be a viable choice for your kitchen, whip out your trusted tape measure and record the size of your fridge opening, the space available for the door swing, and the size of your kitchen opening or entrance.

Knowing the height and width is a good start, but knowing the depth of the opening is equally important. The fridge might be stunning, but if it can’t fit through the door for installation, then it doesn’t do much good. Not leaving enough room for clearance is a common mistake, but the space constraint and the style of door configuration will affect the choice of whether the doors open simultaneously, from the left or the right, or in an outward motion.

When you shop with us online, you can filter by height, width, depth, and total capacity to find the highest-rated model in the size you need. You can find products ranging in width from the standard 36-inch model to something much smaller like a 24-inch model.

Food Shopping

There are three main types of shoppers—the weekly, the entertainer, and the meal-prepper. The weekly shopper wants to maximize their space, whether it be in total capacity or in crisper drawers to store fresh produce. The entertainer needs flexible door shelves for large bottles and drinks and the maximum shelf area for large platters and serving trays. If you prepare meals ahead of time and keep them in the freezer for a rainy day, be aware of the freezer configurations and the inner configuration of the freezer itself.

fresh groceries laid out on the table

Picking the Right Style

There’s a refrigerator style to suit every couple’s tastes. French door refrigerators are popular because of their functionality and high-end design. Some people are drawn to the convenience of a bottom-freezer model because it puts all your fresh food  at eye level. Others will invest in a side-by-side because it’s a better fit for smaller kitchen spaces.

The full list of available fridge models goes as followed:

If you’re wondering which model will allow you to best keep an organized kitchen space, revisit our blog here

Features to Consider

There are endless features to entice your decision, but from practical features, like adjustable door bins to extravagant built-in video screens, the more features you desire, the higher the price tag will be.

Refrigerators are all tricked out with features to make life easier and keep your space organized, but before you succumb to the latest bells and whistles, remember to once again examine your cooking and shopping habits.

Some of the most sought-after fridge features include:

  • Ice and water dispenser
  • Door-in-Door storage
  • Temperature-control drawers
  • Adjustable glass shelves
  • Gallon-size door bins
  • Air filtration system
  • Connected apps
  • Dual-cooling system
  • Dual ice maker

filling up a glass of water from the fridge

Refrigerator Finishes

The final thing to agree upon is the color and finish of your appliance. You’ll want a finish that matches the rest of your cooking space but still stands out among the rest of your kitchen appliances. Fingerprint-resistant refrigerators are a popular option for those with small children who like to get their hands on everything. It's a glossier finish that repels smudges and is much easier to keep clean.

Our refrigerators are available in a variety of colors and finishes to turn heads and make a bold statement in your kitchen, including:

  • Black
  • White
  • Slate
  • Matte white
  • Stainless steel
  • Black stainless steel
  • Matte black stainless steel

Higher-end brands like GE Cafe feature customizable handles in flashier finishes such as bronze, copper, and brushed black.

Ready to Shop?

Purchasing new appliances can be tricky, but when you and your significant other know where to start, it makes the journey much more enjoyable and attainable.

Now that you’re experts on laundry and refrigeration appliances, we hope we’ve been able to help you agree on an undeniable choice. But if not, let our team of experts at Duerden’s help you decide which refrigerator model is the best fit for your home and your lifestyle. If you have questions, chat with us online, give us a call, or visit our store today and we will be glad to assist you in your journey.