Your home is one of the biggest investments that you will make in a lifetime. You’d want it to be cozy, homey, reflect a bit of your personality and be the ultimate haven that you can go home to at the end of a long day at work. After building the house from the ground up or choosing which apartment or house you would be living in, you naturally need to work on filling it up with furniture pieces that will make you live in utmost comfort.
This is what we will focus on here. Whether you’ve just moved into a different apartment and need to furnish the place or if you had a house built from the ground up, we know just how you can save money on furniture.
Before counting down the ways for you to save money, let’s first take a quick look at the furniture-buying habits of the Americans for the past few years. During the recession, consumers held back on buying non-essential items such as those needed for home improvement or renovation projects, because of their lack of a disposable income.
Fortunately, the industry bounced back and in 2013, furniture and home furnishing stores generated around 101.41 billion worth of sales in US dollars. The figures include sales for furniture, bedding and accessories. If you want to save money on furniture, you came to the right place!
According to Statista.com, the leading companies selling furniture in the US for 2014 includes:
- Ashley Furniture Homestores
- Rooms To Go
- Berkshire Hathaway Furniture Division
- Mattress Firm
- Pier 1 Imports
- Raymour & Flanigan
If you feel that the furniture items from these stores are too pricey for your budget unless the store holds a big sale, how can you acquire the things that you need for your home renovation project? Find out in the next section.
What Are the Top 10 Ways to Save Money on Furniture?
Check out our top tips on how you can save money when buying new furniture:
1. Ask yourself if you really need new furniture
Unless you have a house that’s newly built from the ground up, ask yourself if you really need new furniture.
If you are moving to a different house or apartment, can you take your existing furniture with you?
If you’re merely redecorating, can’t you reupholster or refinish the furniture that you currently have?
By giving your old furniture a new lease in life and matching them with new, cheap items like throw pillows, rugs, lamps and accent pieces, you can upgrade the look of a room without having to spend too much.
2. Do your furniture shopping online
If you must buy furniture, do it online. Take a look at the reasons why you will save more in the long run by purchasing furniture from online stores:
- Unlike brick-and-mortar stores, online shop owners do not have to pay for the wages of sales staff or rental of commercial space. This means that they can afford to offer much lower prices for their goods.
- When you shop from online stores, the company either has a warehouse where the goods are stored, or the items are shipped directly to the customer from the manufacturer. This equates to lesser shipping fees and the elimination of middlemen costs.
The same thing applies to other goods bought online, not just furniture – although it still pays to compare the rates if you stumble upon an on-going sale from an actual store. Save money on furniture and spend it on something else!
3. Look for furniture coupons
Save money on furniture by using coupons. If you think that you can only get coupons for grocery items, think again. By signing up for the mailing list of online furniture stores, retailers and manufacturers, you can get great discounts for your purchases. There are also companies which send out newsletters to update consumers when there are big sales and clearance sales.
If you tried keying in a coupon code that does not work, check out the fine print because some deals have minimum purchase requirements. Keep on trying until you get a valid coupon that works with the site you’re shopping at.
4. Check out your options from warehouse sales, thrift stores or antique stores
If you cannot find great deals for furniture online, there are plenty of brick-and-mortar stores where you can find pretty good pieces:
- Warehouse sales are usually held by manufacturers who have excess inventory and need to clear out stocks. Manufacturers hold warehouse sales annually, so take note of the month when the event is held because it is bound to repeat year after year.
- Thrift stores and antique stores are an excellent source of affordable furniture. Befriend an antique store owner and he or she might even notify you whenever a specific furniture that you need arrives at the shop.
Another advantage of shopping from these establishments is that they are more than willing to offer you great bargains, unlike the big stores where the prices are more or less fixed. You really need to save money on furniture!
5. If you want a room with a bold color palette, buy large furniture pieces in neutral colors
Let’s say that you would like to design a blood-red bedroom to inject that romantic ambiance in the area. Instead of looking for a red futon or a red mattress, look for big furniture pieces in neutral colors. Then, use blood red accents like pillows, bed sheets, comforters and bedspreads as colored accents. Neutral-colored furniture can be produced at a lower rate as compared to ones with colors because fewer consumers prefer them.
6. Make sure to ask about the delivery cost first before deciding to buy any type of furniture
This is one of the most important things that you need to remember when buying furniture in-store: there are handling costs, shipping costs and other fees that you need to shoulder as the buyer. There might be a low sticker price but once you add all the other extras, the total cost would amount to a lot. If you want to save money on furniture and pick the best prices, here’s what you need to do:
- Front door delivery means that the furniture will be delivered on the first floor of your apartment building. If you live on the second or third floor, you have to carry it upstairs yourself.
- Inside delivery is more expensive than front door delivery, but the furniture will be delivered straight to your front door – whether it’s on the ground or fifth floor of an apartment building.
- White glove delivery is the most expensive option where the furniture will be delivered to your home, taken inside, unpacked from the box and set up. There are websites and furniture stores that will charge you as much as $100 for a white glove delivery, although the convenience might be worth all the hassle.
A cheaper option is for you to choose the cheapest delivery option, but you do need to ask the help of friends or neighbors to get the furniture inside your home – and assemble it if required. For bigger furniture pieces, you can also go for store pick-up then look for services like U-Haul where the movers will deliver the item to your home and unpack it.
7. Save money on furniture by looking for multi-functional furniture
A sofa that turns into a bed, a coffee table that doubles as a storage compartment, a chair magazine rack – there are plenty of furniture pieces which serve two or more functionalities. Not only do these pieces save space, but they also help you save money when furnishing your home.
8. Don’t discount the possibility of buying second hand furniture, or swap/trade furniture
If you’re merely redecorating and the furniture pieces that you have are perfectly functional, you don’t really have to buy new ones. Do consider the option of swapping or trading them for similar, good quality pieces so that you won’t have to spend a single cent to buy the big furniture pieces that you need.
9. Look for furniture pieces which do not require expensive upkeep
Finally, look for items which do not require expensive upkeep. Certain colors, fabrics and materials require more upkeep than others. A white leather sofa, for example, would require a lot of maintenance even for minor stains, especially if you have little kids running around the house.
If you must buy furniture with a unique, beautiful but difficult-to-maintain material, make sure to buy the corresponding tool to clean it – like a steam cleaner or a vacuum cleaner.
10. Buying furniture is more about the quality than the brand
Unlike clothes, furniture brands are not that well-known – although some stores are more popular than others. To save money, do not get caught up in brand names when buying furniture. Look for quality instead. There’s a big possibility that you can get a cheaper sofa with almost the same design from another store, because the way that the sofas are manufactured is pretty much the same.
Follow these tips so that you can save money on furniture while not making any kind of compromises when it comes to your home!