Have you joined the The Frugal Navy Wife on Facebook? Join over 19,000 others, make friends and share deals you find!
There are so many places to buy used furniture! From Craigslist, your local Re-Store, the Salvation Army, Goodwill, to a garage sale, and the newspaper classifieds to even for FREE on FreeCycle.org! So how do you make sure you get quality Furniture??
Furniture You Shouldn’t Buy Used
There is some furniture that is cheaply made. It just isn’t made like it used to be! Being in the military I know furniture needs to survivet a hard move ….. every 3 years! So here is what I look for!
- Used cribs - As mentioned before there are SOOOOOO many recalls (who thought up drop down side to begin with?!) that you can NEVER be sure the crib you get isn’t on that recall list!
- Second-hand mattresses - Even if it’s spotless and appears to be unused with the tags still attached. 2 words …. bed bugs! They are a PITA to get rid of and just um ewwwww!
- Lamps – Particularly Second hand lamps that short out when you plug them in for testing – Unless you are prepared to re-wire them or take them to be re-wired, they are a potential electrical and fire hazard in your home.
- Pine lumber sofas or living room furniture – Without a solid hardwood frame– like maple or oak–it generally won’t live through a move.
- Sofas with mesh support – These won’t withstand the test of time (think of say your kids jumping on the couch like mine!). Instead, look for eight-way hand tied construction and cushions with down and wrapped foam.
- Chairs that have stapled joints – Check underneath the seat for corner blocking that is not only glued, but also bolted for true support. It’s going to carry the weight of your friends and family.
Things to consider when buying used furniture
- Draw the line between “character” and “damaged goods.” Water rings, discoloration in wood, and minor dings are all fixable and contribute to character. Water damage, wood worm, and split timber are characteristics of decay.
- Don’t turn up your nose at a piece just because of the color or fabric. When considering upholstered goods, take a look at the line and scale. In the right material, you could have a gem for generations. You’ll also want to have anything upholstered that you buy second-hand recovered and refilled with new materials for environmental health reasons. A piece may look clean, but there could be any number of things going on underneath, from pet dander to molds.
- Try out the furniture. When purchasing second-hand, whether from a resale shop, antique store, or estate sale, try the furniture out. Open the drawers; sit on the chair; lean on the table. Everyday activities and mundane actions will often reveal hidden structural issues you wouldn’t see if you only looked at the pieces. If it feels solid, it usually is.