Decorating a home on a budget is tricky, especially when you need to buy big items, like furniture. When we moved into our dream home 8 years ago it took almost every penny we had (planning a wedding at the same time didn’t help the finances) and there wasn’t much left for new furniture. We had to work with what we already owned or look at alternative ways to keep the cost of furnishing our home really low. Here’s a few frugal furniture ideas to help keep costs down:
Buy used items
Buying second-hand items is an especially good approach. If you contact show home furniture firms you will find that a lot of them sell off their old stock on a regular basis. Often, that furniture is only a few months old and has never actually been used, because it has only been used for display purposes. This means that you can buy the very latest style of furniture at a huge discount. Often, you can buy everything that you need to decorate a room, so it looks like you have hired an interior designer.
When we bought our first home we bought an ex-display couch and it was half the price it should have been, 15 years later we still love it!
Re –vamp what you own
Another good way to give your home a fresh new look is to revamp the furniture that you already own. These days, it is easy to learn how to strip a table down and re-surface or paint it. You can now buy the high-quality products that you need to produce a finish that is every bit as good as the professionals achieve. If you have never done anything like this before, you can always go to the dump and pick up a discarded item to practice on.
Covering chairs and sofas with new fabric is far easier than you think. Modern fabric glues mean that you can often do it without having to actually sew anything. You will also need an upholstery stapler, but these are easy to buy online. Again, you can learn all you need to know online using free videos.
Tap into the sharing economy
If you are not sure that you have the necessary ability to tackle these types of projects you could always tap into the sharing economy. In many areas, there are skill swap clubs. Potentially, you can clean someone´s house a couple of times in return for them stripping and repainting an item of furniture that you want updated or revamped. This approach has the added benefit of your not having to invest in the specialist tools you may need to do this type of job.
Rearrange your furniture
Even something as simple as rearranging some of the items you already own can make a big difference to how a room looks. This is especially the case if you de-clutter a room that is stuffed with furniture. The good thing about this option is that you can easily sell the items you no longer need to raise a bit of extra cash. You can then use this to buy the materials you need to repaint or make some new soft furnishings.
Get new items of furniture for free
It is even possible to get new furniture for free. If you join a recycling club, via a website like this one you can pick up other people´s castoffs and use them in your own home. You will be very pleasantly surprised by the quality of the furniture you can pick up in this way.
We are currently planning our new extension and will definitely be looking at some of these options when it comes to decorating, I can’t wait to give our house a fresh, new look.
Disclosure: This is a collaborative post.
The only thing we bought new was our sofa and armchair. Everything else: kitchen, TV stand, coffee table, dining table, was bought second hand on Facebook MarketPlace or Gumtree. We only buy solid wood so that we know it’s good quality and will last. We basically filled our house with second hand stuff and we love it.
I love your idea of sharing/swapping skills. That’s one I’ve never heard of before!