What you should know before buying equipment for your home gym

Personal Finance

CONNECTICUT (WTNH) — With COVID rates fluctuating, many people are shying away from the gym.

For those looking to set up a home gym, experts advise doing your research before committing to a purchase because companies make take more of your money without you knowing it.

John Kuhn was hitting the gym two to three times a week. Then, COVID hit and quarantine shifted his fitness journey.

He signed up for online workout programs and started making purchases.

“Started to add some equipment here and there; things as simple as a jump rope, stability ball,” he said.

But when isolation stretched longer than he imagined, those purchases got bigger. From dumbbells to a spin bike, his basement turned home gym.

“Facebook Marketplace has been great for finding products,” the Fairfield resident said. “I found a free treadmill, which is functioning and works quite well.”

While great finds are out there, the Better Business Bureau (BBB) Connecticut warns of equipment promising “get fit quick” solutions.

“We saw a lot of online purchase scams from that during the pandemic,” advised BBB Connecticut spokesperson, Luke Frey.

To avoid getting caught in a scam, he said to read reviews on reputable sites.

“Read them. See what these complaints are. On BBB.org you can actually see how that company responds to these complaints, so are the complaints about their bill? The actual product? Is it complaints about how it gets to your home, returning, refunds?”

If you’re going big, like buying a popular Peloton bike, the product might be on backorder and could take weeks or months to arrive.

Be sure to calculate financing and subscription fees and take measurements to make sure it fits comfortably in your space.

“Find a piece of equipment that you can afford all year long and then also calculate the true cost,” Frey said.

Kuhn said he sought advice from reviews, friends on social media and word of mouth.

“I don’t think I’m going back to a gym. Between the equipment we have…the availability of online and subscription kind of models, I’m more than happy to just go down in the basement and do something.”

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