Purchasing used furniture doesn’t get much respect in a culture obsessed with newness. But today I want to address the stigma associated with buying secondhand home furnishings. My place is full of items that have a history, and here is why I like it that way.
1. Style – If you love design styles from the past, secondhand furniture is the way to go. I have furnished my home with many mid-century modern pieces, purchased locally, to create a space that reflects my unique taste. And if you’re not into past styles, you can modify items with paint or new hardware to give them a more updated look.
2. Quality – Purchasing high quality furniture today can be very pricey, but when shopping secondhand you can find great pieces at a steep discount. Furniture that has survived multiple owners and is still in good enough shape to be sold is likely to be well-made!
3. Affordability – With the exception of antiques and some specific in-demand brands, most secondhand furniture can be purchased for a fraction of what it would cost for new. This can be a great benefit if you have a tight budget or if you need to furnish an entire home at one time.
4. Imperfections – Most used furniture will come with some scratches and dents. While that may sound like a negative, I find the opposite to be true. When something is already broken in I don’t sweat it if it gets another scratch or if I bump it with the vacuum cleaner. This can provide peace of mind if you have kids or pets who are tough on the furniture.
5. Responsibility – Finally, buying used means you are keeping these items out of the waste stream. Creating a unique space that reflects your personal style while saving things from the landfill is a win-win!
A couple of caveats: secondhand furniture generally doesn’t come with a warranty, so inspect items carefully before purchasing. And I would be cautious when buying upholstered pieces unless you are planning to have them recovered.
I’ve included some photos of my favorite secondhand purchases. I’d love to hear about yours! If you found these tips helpful be sure to subscribe to the Pretty Neat weekly email! You'll get a short and sweet message each week with my best advice for a more beautiful and functional home. Click here to sign up, and you'll also receive my FREE guide: How to Get Rid of Stuff! Make it fab! Carrie