Take The Tour
Simplicity. Transparency. Honesty. Cut out the gimmicks and just get the facts. These are the core values of the team here at Modern Castle. There’s a better way to shop for home products—and we’re here to help you find it. Welcome to Modern Castle.
We review the cool and essential stuff you need for home, personally researching, testing, and reviewing the products that are featured on our website. If it belongs in the home, chances are, it belongs at Modern Castle.
Currently, our product reviews include four main categories— vacuum reviews (including uprights, stick vacuums, canister vacuums, handheld vacuums, and of course, robot vacuums), mops, smart home devices, and furniture.
We’re always adding new product reviews and product categories. If you have a specific product you think we should investigate please let us know here.
Who We Are.
I’m Derek Hales, Founder, and Editor-in-Chief around here. After business school and spending 4 years in corporate America, I decided it was time for a change. So I launched my first consumer education website and hired the best people I know to help me run it, my sister, Kayla, and cousin, Chris.
We take our reviews seriously and do our best to always find ways to improve (both new content and existing reviews). But, we’re not perfect. If you have suggestions or things you think we could do better please send us your feedback.
Hours At Work
Meet the Team.
Founder & Editor-in-Chief
Reviewer & Photographer
Reviewer & Designer
Our process to sniff out the best products for today’s modern home includes four critical steps:
The majority of the products we test go through this same process. It is in-depth, rigorous, and we try out best to test products the same way they would be tested in a home. To do this, we test them in my personal home.
Ideally, all products would go through this same process and for the vast majority of our reviews, that is the case. There is a select batch of reviews that we do, which do not involve physical testing. These reviews are written for products that are substantially similar to other products we’ve tested, products that are not as in high demand from our readers, and/or products we feel we could review through research alone.
To analyze these products, we rely on specifications (and comparing them to similar products) as well as looking at other third-party reviews. Areas where we notice consistencies in quality, craftsmanship, or design are noted in our final review as potential issues.
#1 Research the category.
Before diving into any product for review, we start with research on what is already on the market. What do companies say is their best product? What do other consumers say is the best? We consider features, specs, usability, maintenance, other factors to determine which products ultimately come to the Modern Castle for a test drive.
#2 Receive the product.
Once we’ve selected which products are ready for a Modern Castle review, we order the product. We order our products in the exact same way that you would order a product. Go to the website, enter your information, wait for that tan package to arrive at your door.
In rare cases, we will accept product samples from a manufacturer or retailer. However, these free samples don’t earn them any extra points. You can see the samples we’ve received here.
#3 Put it to the test.
The exact details of our Modern Castle tests may vary by product type, but each product is compared across similar testing criteria within each product type. To decide how we test, we think as any consumer would. What was the product designed to do? How well does it do that particular job? Does it have any other features that help to increase the overall value?
We document the results of each test with real data to show how it performs across the variety of tests we do. The overall product score is based highly on the results of the tests or other product analysis.
#4 The final review.
The final review is written up after the series of tests and analysis are complete. All of our final reviews include a broad-spectrum look at product performance as well as the small details and specifications. Each of these factors can play a roll in whether or not a user chooses to ultimately purchase a product.
We definitely have our opinion on how good a particular product is. However, everyone’s needs and desires are different. We try help arm with enough information, pros, and cons, to determine if the product can meet your specific requirements. Sometimes what’s great for one person isn’t so great for another.
Popular Guides & Reviews
Still Have Questions?
If you still have questions on the way Modern Castle operates or want to submit requests for new products to review, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us!
We are excited and willing to help you find the best products for your home. Let’s get started right away.