Furnishing Your New Home Without Breaking The Bank

Cori Dunphy
Cori Dunphy
Published on April 23, 2018

 

Walking into your new home for the first time may be a bit jolting. Unless it was vacant when you purchased it, the house will look completely different. Furnishing your home is probably the best thing you could do especially when it is not breaking your bank!

The walls will be empty, the floors exposed from corner-to-corner and the prospect of filling all that space may be overwhelming.

It’s also exciting. Finally, there’s no landlord to dictate wall color, and you can fill the home with whatever you want and can afford.

Ah, therein lies the rub, right? Affordability. After all, you’ve just shelled out a huge chunk of money to the lender for the down payment and closing costs. If you’re like many homebuyers, there’s not much cash or credit left to do the things you want to in your new home.

This is where you can get creative, and we have some tips to get you started.

Make a plan

We all know what happens when we go grocery shopping without a list. We impulse shop. Don’t let this happen to you when shopping for home furnishings and décor.

Go through each room in the house, making notes of your vision for the rooms and what you’ll need to purchase to bring the vision to life.

If you can’t picture what you want in a room, consider visiting a few new-home communities for ideas. From wall colors to accessories, you can also find tips online at pinterest.comrealsimple.com, and bhg.com. 

Shop “used” first

Before shelling out the big bucks for new furniture, consider shopping for used first. It’s the best way to find affordable yet quality furniture.

However, it’s important to look beyond the condition of the “bones” of each piece.

If you like a coffee table or chair style, try to overlook the cosmetic, easily-fixed problems.

So, where to shop for these cheap wonders of the decorating world? Read on.

Garage/Estate Sales

No, they aren’t the same thing. Garage sales are the sale of a person’s or family’s “stuff.”

An estate sale is typically a bit more high-end and is used to dispose of a deceased person’s belongings.

However, both types of sales offer a variety of items priced less than you’d find at a retail outlet.

Items for sale at estate sales are typically in better condition, so expect to pay a bit more than you would for a similar item at a garage sale.

Don’t forget to take into account any additional costs for transporting your purchases home.

Find garage and estate sales in your area on craigslist.orgestatesales.net, and estatesale.com.

Consignment Stores

The consignment store owner is the “middle man (or woman)” between the customer and the for-sale-by-owner. You’ll find higher prices here than you will at thrift stores and garage/estate sales, but most of the items have been well cared for.

Thrift Stores

Most larger towns and cities have at least one thrift store, such as Deseret Industries, Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore, Goodwill, the Salvation Army, and privately-owned thrift stores. Here, you’ll find household furnishings and accessories at deep discounts.

The tradeoff is condition – much of what you’ll find has seen better days.

Again, look beyond cosmetic issues to determine if an item is salvageable with new upholstery, paint, or stain.

Online Shopping

Craigslist’s popularity depends on where in the U.S. you live. In some areas, it’s the go-to website when folks want to buy or sell something. With the addition of OfferUp, you can find home décor bargains without leaving your living room.

On Craigslist, you’ll find a rather extensive section under “For Sale.” A few years ago, the site started allowing retail stores to offer items, but you are given the ability to exclude those listings, which is ideal when you’re seeking bargains.

Etsy is a fun place to shop for smaller items with shipping charges that won’t break the bank.

You might also consider shopping on eBay, although the shipping charges for large items may make them less of a bargain than you had hoped.

Get around this problem by using the “Delivery Options” link on the left-side navigation menu and ticking the box next to “Free Shipping.”

Or, search eBay locally. In the same left-side navigation menu, you’ll find “Item Location,” where you can search only for items located within a specified distance from a ZIP code.

Shopping smart can help you add dramatic changes to your new home without spending a fortune.

Some other favs of mine are houzz.com. They allow you to search room by room and provide fabulous ideas. They break down each item in the room so you can shop for those items. I also love Birchlane.com and Wayfair.com. I think you should give them all a try!

 

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