They sure don't make home telephones the way they used too. I remember when I was a kid, we had a big, black, heavy phone that had a dial on its face....no push buttons. It was hard-wired to the wall, not plugged in. The receiver was so heavy, you could use it for a weight. You could have run over that phone with an 18-wheeler and it would not break and it would still be working after the fact.
Today, they make phones out of cheap plastic. If you drop it a foot or two from a table or desk, it shatters in a million pieces and needs to be tossed in the trash.
We have cell phones, but we still have not been able to make ourselves give up our home phone like many of our friends have done. We actually have four phones in the house. They all have a base that is plugged into the wall. Two of them are "cordless" and two of them are "corded". We always like to have at least one "corded" phone because in power outages, the "cordless" phones stop working. One of the "corded" phones is on our fax machine, the other is just a phone.
We had a "cordless" phone in the kitchen that had an answering machine on it. It worked great for about 10 years and then the digital voice on the answering machine started to get "garbly" to where you could not understand the messages that people left, so we decided to get a new phone.
Have you gone shopping for phones lately? It's very difficult to find a phone that has only one receiver (or handset as they now call them) these days. Most of them have at least two and some have up to six and you can just keep adding as many as you want or need.
Anyway, we bought a V-Tech brand wireless phone with two "handsets" and it had a base with an answering machine in it.
I tried and tried to get the answering machine work by calling my home phone with my cell phone, but to no avail.
We saw that we could return the phone to Best Buy before 30 days and since it had only been 27 or 28 days, we packed everything back into the box, which is a struggle in itself, and returned the phone to the store. We told them we wanted to upgrade to another phone because we figured since this one only cost $45 that maybe one that cost $69 would be better.
We left the store with a Uniden "cordless" with two "handsets".
After about a month and a half, we started noticing a "hum" on the handsets of the Uniden phone. We thought it was our wiring, but noticed that the "corded" phones did not have the hum. But by now, we were past the 30 days for the return/refund of the phone to Best Buy.
We decided to head over to Office Max and buy just a plain, ordinary "corded" telephone with an answering machine inside of it. We found an AT&T phone for $29. Inexpensive and simple. This one actually ended up being more complicated. I don't know how many times I read through the manual to try to figure out how to set-up the answering machine with my "outgoing message" and "contact numbers".
I checked my receipt from Office Max, but of course, we had it 34 days and they only take returns up to 30 days after the purchase.
So now we are back using the Uniden with the "hum" on the line. Wish I could find a phone like we had when I was a kid.