Furnishing On A Budget: 4 Tips For New Homeowners

Congratulations – you’re officially a homeowner! But the big expenses aren’t done yet. No, now it’s time to furnish your new residence, and quality furniture doesn’t come cheap. If you’re going to stay on budget and make your next mortgage payment, you’ll need to get creative.

Before you crack open that Ikea catalog or head to the department store, take a look at these four tips and assess your options. Act in haste and you’ll be filled with regret in a few years when all of your pressboard furniture is falling apart.

  1. Search Secondhand Shops

Quality furniture today costs a pretty penny, and unless you’re wealthy or have a very high credit limit, you probably can’t afford to buy new furniture that’s built to last. Luckily, that isn’t your only option. Particularly when it comes to wood furniture, spend some time scouring local secondhand shops for dressers, tables, and other basic home goods.

The most important thing to do when picking out secondhand furniture is look carefully for signs of quality craftsmanship. Key features like dovetailing and real hardwood mean you’d pay hundreds or thousands of dollars for a similar piece new in stores. It’s worth putting in some work sanding and refinishing an older piece of furniture for what you’ll save by buying it used.

  1. Invest In Durable Décor

When you’re trying to stick to a budget, it’s always tempting to go digging around in the bargain bin, but cheap goods don’t last. Instead, when shopping for furniture or even décor, look for quality goods that will last for years. As with anything, you’ll spend more money replacing cheap things than by spending a little more once for a quality item.

Besides furniture, what’s worth the splurge? Household linens are at the top of the list. So go ahead and spend a little extra on a durable and beautiful French tablecloth, quality bath towels, and nice sheets and bedding if you don’t already have them. There’s a reason these items often top wedding registries – they can be pricy, but you’ll enjoy them every day.

  1. DIY It

No one is suggesting you build all your own furniture or sew your own curtains, but there are plenty of smaller projects you can take on with a little DIY know how. For example, you can easily take some of that secondhand furniture and upgrade it to look a little more modern with a fresh coat of paint and some decorative finishings from your local hardware store. Or collect some old wine corks and create a corkboard using an upcycled window. In these Pinterest inflected times, DIY projects are trendy, not cheap.

  1. Make A Wish List

As you’re furnishing your house, you’ll quickly realize that you have some older pieces you can hold on to for a little while and that there are things you want that you can live without. That doesn’t mean you should just forget about the items you really want. Instead, gather those extras onto a wish list and save up for them – and don’t forget to set up price alerts and watch the sales. You’ll be able to afford those pieces in good time.

Furnishing a home isn’t a one-time deal, it’s a work in progress, so don’t be disappointed if it takes you months or even years to pull your new space together. While it may be frustrating at first, you’ll be glad you took your time and invested in pieces that will last, instead of just landing in the landfill.

Categories: Real Estate

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June 30, 2018 Furnishing On A Budget: 4 Tips For New Homeowners