Save Money on Furniture: Buy Multi-Purpose Pieces

by Silicon Valley Blogger on 2010-08-2511

Want to save some money on furniture? Well, as a wannabe interior designer, I’ve previously talked about a few ways to do just that. Here are a number of ways to save some bucks on the stuff you use at home — chairs, tables, beds, armoires. Let’s check out some of the interesting and clever methods to furnishing your home.

How To Save Money on Furniture

#1 Get them used.

Let’s start with the way I do it — I primarily use Craigslist for this purpose. Here’s where I talk about my online shopping experience with Craigslist. I have purchased some home decor and furniture from them before, and have been quite satisfied. But take note that while cheap or used furniture is initially awesome because you get a deal, they may not last long in your possession. Could be because they tend to be of lower quality (people don’t want to get rid of their heirlooms) or because used stuff has seen better days and starts to fall apart at some point. As far as the furniture I’ve purchased online, I’ve had a good few years with them and it’s time for some beloved pieces to be replaced.

#2 Be resourceful. Maybe DIY?

Now for the fun stuff — if you’re young, single and creative, maybe you can attempt to do as this guy has done in my post on “how to furnish your house for free“. The guy used FedEx boxes to make furniture. Surely you’ve seen people make furniture out of cardboard before right?

cardboard office
Image from

cardboard cradle
Nice baby cradle.

If you’re married and have kids or rambunctious pets, it may not work out, especially if the materials you use are flimsy. The point here is this: if you are handy and able, maybe you can make your own decor or furniture. My husband’s grandfather built his own house, for goodness sake. It’s a shame that the future generations in his family can’t even wield a hammer. 😉 But sure, if you have the skills, then build your own stuff.

#3 Get furniture pieces that serve more than one function.

If I knew where to look, I’d be first in line for some of this multi-purpose space saving furniture. Where can you buy this stuff? I’d be interested to know how much they cost as well. Would the manufacturer charge more because the items are so useful? Or would you end up saving money because you get two furniture pieces in one? If anyone owns something as cool as this, let us know!

#4 Make holes in your floor.

This is not entirely a silly suggestion. There’s this designer that has crafted what is called the OOooChair (had trouble spelling that), which aims to save you the need for chairs by recommending that you opt for holes in your floor. You can always carve out holes in your floor that are big enough for your legs to stick through. Then you can do away with those pesky chairs forever. Is it a practical idea? Not sure, but you get the picture. Here’s how it works:

A. Create holes with caps.

OOooChair, save money on chairs

B. Stick your feet through.

chair on floor

C. Relax.

OOooChair, save money on furniture

Thanks to Gizmodo for the idea.

Copyright © 2010 The Digerati Life. All Rights Reserved.

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

kelliinkc August 25, 2010 at 8:37 pm

Wow. I am blown away by the design and function of the Resource furniture. I would love more info on them!

John Rowe August 26, 2010 at 11:47 am

That’s funny. Holes in the floors? What’s the point of holes when you can sit cross legged on the floor. If you’re going to sit on the floor anyway, it would be easier to sit on a flat floor than trying to find the holes to stick your feet in. It also doesn’t sound that comfortable if you can’t shift around or need to get up off the ground. This can’t be serious?

Silicon Valley Blogger August 26, 2010 at 11:50 am

I agree! It doesn’t seem that practical. In other countries, people sit on the floor with ease. I recall a visit I made to Japan when I stayed in an authentic Ryokan. Everything had to be done on the floor. There was just a small mattress on the bamboo floor to sleep in. It was fun! And they charged us an insane $1,000 a night for the authentic experience. Ok, that was during the dot com period when I was behaving foolishly. 😛 August 27, 2010 at 3:49 am

I think it is a known fact that there is a big markup on furniture. So I am glad to see an article on some alternate ideas. If you really want to save money go to the thrift stores or garage sales to get chairs. They will not match but they will work just as well as FedEx boxes.

Nix the holes in your floor if you ever want to sell your house in the USA.

Silicon Valley Blogger August 27, 2010 at 9:56 am
Yeah, I don’t even like holes in the ground in a backyard, even if it’s filled with water! 😉

Julia September 1, 2010 at 9:49 am

Ok, I’m with everyone else, holes in the floor? That is seriously, too funny! I just found some pretty cheap furniture at Overstock. From what I could find, they were the cheapest around for me — if you want something that matches, of course. 🙂 I just always worry about buying furniture online…

ConsumerMiser September 1, 2010 at 9:47 pm

My friends just furnished their vacation home all with used furniture from Craigslist, yard sales, and old unused furniture they had. They saved a bundle and this is definitely environmentally friendly.

Cool card board furniture too–talk about recycling!

Peter Dunin September 8, 2010 at 6:13 am

This is a good idea but I wouldn’t use cardboard boxes as furniture is a bit cheap and doesn’t look that convincing. Furniture does have to be practical and cardboard isn’t.

Craigslist September 15, 2010 at 12:11 pm

I know a lot of people (they wrote me) who used Craigslist to buy any kind of stuff. Those deals were sometimes lucky, sometimes not so much :/ . You can make a really good deal on Craiglist and furniture bought there can serve you for a long time.

PS.: Awesome idea with holes in the floor — too bad my wife does not want this type of thing.

rahulteak January 18, 2011 at 12:33 am

Nice to see your tips for saving money.

Antique Beds January 27, 2011 at 7:36 am

Good ideas. Restoring old tables, chairs, beds, sofas can save you money too- when you do it yourself, of course.

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