In the current economic climate, those who don't want to go without the latest consumer electronics are discovering an old-fashioned alternative to buying products up front.

In seems BrightHouse, a company which offers rent-to-buy schemes on electronic goods and household appliances, is doing well enough at the moment to announce a national marketing campaign and a 20-store expansion plan.

Described as a "weekly payment store", as an example, BrightHouse offers customers the chance to "rent" a £1000 42-inch Philips TV, by paying £9.22 a week. After 156 weeks at 29.9% APR, the customer will have paid £1438.32, or £2213.64 if they opt for "Service Cover" as well.

BrightHouse has already opened 21 new stores in the last 12 months, increasing its premises to 177 with those already-mentioned 20 new shops to open this year.