Value of furniture, a consumer tip

Discussion in 'Teacher Time Out' started by Irishdave, Dec 27, 2011.

  1. Irishdave

    Irishdave Enthusiast

    Apr 29, 2007
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    Dec 27, 2011

    Being an old shop teacher I tend to look at how it is made and what it is made from.

    How do you consider value?
    Do you move often?
    Do you have kids?
    Do you rent? ​
    These factors all must be considered.

    Here is what I taught to my students:

    Unless it is truly hand made (not mass produced) its value is many times over stated. If you compare prices with, lets say, Amazon you will see the item's real value.
    Recently I built a desk with a pop up top which becomes a stand up lectern. When I priced the mechanism the price was $199.99 here in the States I found the same mechanism from China only $10 and freight brought it up to $49.00, far better price.​
    I put furniture in two classes "heirloom" and "everyday." When you buy "heirloom" it should last for generations, a good value if it can last.
    "Everyday" lasts from one year to about 7 years here is where value comes in, do you spend $500 on a coffee table that may last 7 to 30 years or go to Walmart and buy one for $24.88?
    Many young people will buy over priced furniture thinking it is a good value but forget that wear and tear from family and "others" can really take its toll. Replacing a "Walmart" coffee table 3 or 4 times may cost about $130 where replacing a "heirloom" will take more of your budget ($1000+).

    If you plan to live in a museum, Heirloom is the way to go. If you have a family, buying in the "step mode" is better, start with Walmart or Yard sales then move up and finish with high$ stores, is a better value.

  3. Ms. I

    Ms. I Maven

    May 13, 2004
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    Dec 27, 2011

    Speaking of furniture, I've been checking out furniture sites, making a list & notes (& getting excited) about furniture to get for when I get my new apt. I realize some of the older made furniture is probably more durable than some furniture of today...notice I said some. I certainly don't move often at all (only 1x in my lifetime so far).

    I will be living alone & I have a dog who isn't destructive, but I like having leather furniture. Currently, we have furniture we've had for 22 yrs: Leather furniture for the den that's used daily & rattan furniture in the living rm that no one really sits on because we're never in that part of the house. Most of the bedroom furniture is wood that we've had for 22+ yrs too.

    I plan to pay the most for my sofa, a rug or two, desk & office chair because I'll be using that the most. I like modern/contemporary style all the way. I don't necessarily need to have "heirloom" stuff, just things that will last a good amount of time.

    I plan to buy substantial items from good furniture stores & accent type things from cheaper stores like IKEA. My plan is just like I buy my cosmetics: Expensive foundation at $30 a bottle because it goes over the entire face, plus good lipsticks, eye shadows & maybe blush & cheaper $8 mascara & maybe eye liner from the drug store. Also, I plan to buy like I buy my clothes/shoes mostly: Good quality things that are ON SALE. I've never gone to yard sales, thrift shops, craigslist, or any bargain basement type hunting for anything in my life & I probably won't start now for furniture buying...not to say that one can't find something good.
  4. nklauste

    nklauste Comrade

    Aug 14, 2008
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    Dec 27, 2011

    When I was getting furniture for my apartment, we found the best deals at a furniture thrift store type place. It is a for charity place where they take in donations and sell it very cheap. We found very nice furniture (living room set of love seat and 2 chairs, entertainment center, and night stand) and did not spend much money. Eventually I will replace it with better stuff, but for the time being it is more than sufficient for me.
  5. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

    Sep 30, 2001
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    Dec 27, 2011

    Dave...there's also a thought process concerning WHERE products are made that weighs into consumer decision making. Furniture made in China may be cheap, but its purchase affects the huge trade imbalance between the US and China. China holds a lot of US T bills in an effort to keep their currency low relative to the dollar and buying Chinese imports just adds to their economy. Consumers so should onsider the WASTE of buying 'throw away' furniture...not really the most 'green' decision to replace a 'Walmart coffee table three or four times':dizzy:
  6. Izzy Teach

    Izzy Teach Rookie

    Dec 22, 2011
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    Dec 27, 2011

    I like nice things, so I buy quality items. I have purchased and inherited some antique pieces. I purchase good-quality wood furniture for my home. My parents stressed the importance of buying quality, classic items that will last a lifetime.

    When my parents moved me from my crib to a regular bed, they purchased high-quality grown-up furniture. That furniture is the same that I currently use in my bedroom. The furniture is classic styling, so it does not appear dated. I change the look of my room accessories.

    I would rather do without an item that to purchase something cheaply made. Not only will cheap products fail to last, they will also look more cheap next to my real pieces.

    I realize that most people are not lucky enough to own their own home at my age. I know that not everyone can afford high-quality furniture.
  7. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

    Nov 16, 2005
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    Dec 27, 2011

    I just bought a coffee table and 2 end tables off Craigs List. I paid $100 for the set. They are beautiful! The seller just wanted them out of the house as she was getting new. They are solid wood, and very heavy. They will last me the rest of my life. I did look for a long time for a good price and good quality.
  8. Danny'sNanny

    Danny'sNanny Connoisseur

    May 13, 2005
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    Dec 27, 2011

    We just upgraded from really old, really worn hand-me-down furniture to slightly less old, slightly less worn down furniture when we bought our house this summer.

    We did buy a small dining table for the family room - our first furniture purchase ever! Marked down from $800 to $200, so somewhere in between lasts forever and junky wal-mart...

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