Buying new furniture can be costly, but you’d be surprised the amount of money you can save by exercising both patience and strategic shopping. What happens most often frequently is people decide to go furniture shopping, and then impulsively buy something that they find they don’t like or isn’t comfortable.  Before wasting your hard earned money (and time), you’ll want to try these steps next time you’re in the market for some new furniture.

Define what you need

The first thing to do is decide exactly what piece of furniture needs replacing. While it might be nice to get yourself a new couch when yours is showing some light wear and tear, don’t do it if your end table is falling apart. Think about the pieces in your home that need replacing and then concentrate on those. Buying items you don’t need right now will only defeat your goal of saving money on furniture.

Start Browsing online for Ideas

Browsing online sites can be quite helpful. Very often you can find the piece you need without having to spend a fortune. There are times when you find what you’re looking for but it’s slightly used. If that doesn’t bother you, then go for it. You should be able to save a considerable amount of money by purchasing something that someone else already owned.

Consider Consignment Shops

Local consignment shops offer the same convenience and low prices. You can see what others have donated and then purchase it at a great discount price. Very often the furniture is in excellent condition due to the stringent guidelines of the shop. Whether you’re in the market for a new dresser or headboard for your bed, browsing consignment shops can definitely help you save money on furniture.

Check out the Classifieds and Estate Sales

The classified section of your local newspaper is an excellent resource for furniture. Not only will you find some used pieces on there, but you can also find items that are older. Many times people advertise their heirloom items in the paper, and are eager to have someone buy it. If you’re willing to go to the house to pick it up, this is a viable option.

Sometimes in the newspaper you can find listings for estate sales. This is a great way to save money on furniture.  An estate sale is when the individual who owned the house is now deceased, and his or her family is selling the contents of the house to whomever’s interested. If you arrive early enough you should be able to find many of the more desirable items still available. And here too you can find heirloom or antique items for much cheaper than you would if you bought them from a store. Be sure to bring a truck that’s capable of hauling the item away if you decide to visit an estate sale. Unless you make special arrangements with the owner, most likely they’ll want you to take it with you right away.

Check Sunday Ads from Furniture Stores

If you’ve decided that you want your next piece of furniture to be new, then your persistence and ability to avoid impulse shopping will definitely pay off. Be sure to buy a local Sunday paper each week and peruse the ads that come with it. Sooner or later you’ll see advertisements for local furniture stores, and you may find that the exact piece you’re looking for is on sale. Each store runs their sale at different times, so be sure to check the papers each week to see if anything changes.

Always Negotiate

If you really want a certain piece of furniture from a particular store, you might want to try negotiating with the store. Sometimes stores are willing to be a bit more flexible on the price of their items, especially in these economically trying times. Often they’d much rather give you a good deal on a piece of furniture and make some money from the sale, than to say no and have you walk away and give your business to a competitor. Before you go, decide what you’re looking for and what you’re willing to pay. If you like what you see at the store you’re in, try making a reasonable offer. A good rule of thumb is to ask more than what you’re looking for to make room for negotiations. For instance, if you see a dresser that you really love and would like 15 percent off the cost, ask for 20 percent. Most likely the sales representative will counter-offer. If he offers a 10 percent discount, you can counter-offer again with 15 percent. If his counter is 15 percent, then you’re getting what you wanted. And you never know, he might just agree to 20 percent!  It’s worth a try.

Wait until the End of Month

Another tactic for saving money on furniture is shopping toward the end of the month. Many retailers get new inventory in at the beginning of each month and eagerly try to move their stock as the month wanes. This might be the perfect time for you to find that certain piece you were looking for to compliment your dining room or living room set. Visit your favorite store during the final days of the month to see what offers you can find.

With home furnishings being such a huge expense, many people wonder how to save money on furniture. Determining whether you need to buy used or new and knowing exactly what you’re looking for will help you get a great deal on your next piece.

Alan Dunn

Written by Alan Dunn – one of our highly talented and underpaid writers. For more information on Alan follow him on Twitter or Google Plus

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