My leather couch ended up being defective and I had to sell it at a loss. The leather was peeling and the factory, Natuzzi, would not stand by their product. In the end I had no choice but to get rid of the couch and buy a new one from a different manufacturer.
The experience was frustrating for me, but it also made me reflect on how much further buying used furniture has gotten me compared to buying new furniture–so much so that I think I’m going to try to stick to buying used in the future, for the most part, anyway.
Here are four reasons why you should buy used furniture:
1. It Costs Less. The main reason to buy used is that it costs significantly less. Now that furniture manufacturers are using designs from the past, you can actually get a used piece of furniture for far less than a new knock-off in the store, as in the case of the Egg Chair above, which costs about $7,000 at Design Within Reach and $500 off eBay. But even if you don’t care about design, buying furniture on the cheap is the kind of thing that keeps on giving. Not only do you save money off the bat, but down the road if you find you don’t have need for a piece of furniture anymore, you can sell it for close to what you paid for it, losing almost no money in the process. Sometimes you even make a profit.
2. It’s Better Made. Call it the IKEA effect, but have you noticed how crappy most new furniture is these days? You walk into a store and look at a chest of drawers that costs $1,300 and find that it’s made of particle board with a cheap veneer and that the inside of the drawers are made with something that is a half-step up from cardboard. Used furniture costs a fraction of that price and is (often) made of solid wood. That particle-board thing won’t last–trust me, I know–but the solid wood already has and will continue to last, and so is a better buy for the money.
3. It’s Easier To Refurbish. Hand-in-hand with the above point, it’s really difficult to sand and stain particle board or a veneer, while older, better-made furniture can be given multiple facelifts throughout its lifetime in your house. This also means that you don’t have to like how used furniture looks when you buy it–if you can imagine how a coat of paint or new hardware would make it look better, you can make it so.
4. It Gives The House Personality. We all know those people who buy all the trendiest furniture. While there’s nothing wrong with that, personally I like when people combine all different kinds of things to reflect their own personality. It brings out creativity and a sense of style that looks like the people who live in the house, not a furniture catalogue.
What do you think about about buying used furniture?