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Buying Furniture for Your New Home? What to Avoid and Money-Saving Tips

Exciting news we have a guest blogger – Maria Jose is a Marketing Specialist and does Content Marketing at Porch.  She is passionate about animals and her hobbies are reading, writing, traveling and music.  She shares with us some handy tips on the particle ways of buying furniture for your home and shows that you can produce sustainable furniture.

 

If you’re gearing up to move into a new home, there are probably a ton of things to take care of on your to-do list. Buying furniture is one of the most important and biggest investments you’ll make, so it’s always a good idea to make sure you choose the right pieces at the right price. There’s a lot to consider when you’re furnishing a new house, from the dimensions to the durability and much more. Check out this guide featuring some advice on what to avoid, along with actionable, helpful tips to make your next furniture buying adventure easy and, most importantly, affordable.

Modern Living room design image
Modern Living room design image

If you’re gearing up to move into a new home, there are probably a ton of things to take care of on your to-do list. Buying furniture is one of the most important and biggest investments you’ll make, so it’s always a good idea to make sure you choose the right pieces at the right price. There’s a lot to consider when you’re furnishing a new house, from the dimensions to the durability and much more. Check out this guide featuring some advice on what to avoid, along with actionable, helpful tips to make your next furniture buying adventure easy and, most importantly, affordable.

10 Important Things to Avoid When Buying Furniture 

White room with doors image
White room with doors image

There are some common furniture buying mistakes that people make, which often leads to buyer’s remorse. Here are the 10 most important things to avoid when buying furniture for your new home, along with some suggestions.

Not measuring: Measuring your space before you buy any new furniture is absolutely crucial. If you don’t measure, your furniture might not fit through the door, or it won’t fit properly in the room. Record the dimensions of every room of your home, noting the length and width in feet. You should also draw a basic layout on paper to help you choose the right size furniture for every space. A sectional won’t fit correctly if you have a small living room, for example. Measuring furniture includes checking the length, width, depth, and height of every piece. This will ensure that every item you buy fits nicely in its designated spot.

Painting first: You might be tempted to paint your new home before you buy new furniture. However, it’s much easier to purchase furniture based on the colors in the room after it’s already there. Go ahead and furnish the rooms in your home, then choose a beautiful paint color to match so everything coordinates nicely for a cohesive look.

Not scaling: Proper scale and proportion are key to a functional space. Make sure your new furniture works well in the room and doesn’t overcrowd it. If the furniture is too large in proportion to the size of the room, everything will feel cramped. If it’s too small, the room will feel hollow and empty. Choose everything in tandem so that every item works well with the other to create a correctly scaled space

Not considering your lifestyle: If you have children or pets, you need to select furniture that fits your lifestyle. Choose upholstered pieces that are easy to clean and maintain if you have a lot of foot traffic and a large family. Having beautiful furniture in your new home is important, but it won’t do any good if it isn’t functional too. Look at each item and think about how it will fit your lifestyle before you purchase.

Stool with a cat image
Stool with a cat image

Being unrealistic about maintenance: All furniture undergoes regular wear and tear, but some materials are easier to maintain than others. Always make sure that your new furniture can be cleaned easily and that it’s not too difficult to repair if something ever gets broken. Search for furniture that’s easy to care for, so you’re not spending all of your time worrying about maintaining it or keeping it clean. Stock up on products to help you maintain it, like wood furniture polishes and waxes, leather conditioners, and a quality vacuum cleaner to get rid of crumbs between sofa cushions.

Buying everything at once: Buying furniture is exciting, so it’s easy to feel like you need to buy everything at once. Furnishing an entire room or even your entire home all at one time could lead to buyer’s remorse later. Focus on the most important pieces first, like the bed for your bedroom, the dining table for your dining room, and the sofa for your living room. You can always add new items to go with it later once you determine which styles, sizes, and designs will work best in each room and for your specific lifestyle.

Getting into an “impulse buy”: Don’t get lured into furniture trends and make an impulse purchase that you’ll regret later. Take your time and research furniture, looking carefully at things like customer reviews and examples of furniture in different homes. When you take your time buying furniture, you’ll be much happier with the outcome.

Prioritizing style over comfort: A beautiful home filled with stylish furniture is important, but your comfort is more important. Don’t sacrifice your comfort just to give your home a stylish look. If your new furniture is uncomfortable, you’ve essentially wasted your hard-earned money. Try to find pieces that meet somewhere in the middle, blending beautiful design with supportive and comfortable features.

Sacrificing quality for price: Saving money on furniture is always a good thing, but you shouldn’t skimp on quality. Look for great deals on furniture that will still provide you with a quality piece you’ll use for years to come. Remember that new furniture at an extremely low price usually means that it’s made of low-quality materials, and it might not hold up to a lot of wear and tear.

Overfilling the room: If you buy too many furniture pieces, it can make the rooms in your home feel cramped and overcrowded. Adding too much furniture will end up making your home feel cluttered, which can lead to higher stress levels. Try to stick with the basics first, then add accent pieces as needed.

How to save money when buying furniture

Saving money on furniture is easy when you keep these helpful tips in mind.

Plant pot full of money and a plant growing pot
Plant pot full of money and a plant growing pot

Shop Online: Shopping online is one of the easiest, most effective ways to save money on everything from furniture to décor and more. Look for websites that offer free shipping to save even more. Before you click the “purchase” button, make sure you read the customer reviews thoroughly to ensure that you’re getting a good deal and a quality item.

Garage Sale: Scour local garage sales to find decent quality furniture. In many cases, homeowners simply need to downsize, or they don’t want to take perfectly good furniture with them for a move. You can always negotiate with the seller to bring the price down even lower, too.

Buying antique furniture: Not all antique furniture costs an arm and a leg. Shop at some local consignment stores to score a good deal on beautiful antiques. The perk of buying antique furniture is that it’s typically made of durable materials, and it’s built to last, so you’re getting more out of your investment.

Repurpose and recycle: You don’t have to buy every single thing brand-new for your home. In fact, some of your furniture can easily be repurposed or recycled. An older coffee table can look new again with a fresh coat of chalk paint. Go through the items you already own to see how many of them can be repurposed or reused in other rooms or for different reasons.

Refurbish: Refurbished furniture can look just as beautiful and last just as long as new furniture. Switch out hardware, add a fresh coat of paint or finish, or reinforce furniture to make it stronger. Simple changes to existing furniture can make it look brand-new and give it a new purpose without breaking your budget.

Upcycle: Upcycling furniture is similar to refurbishing, and it involves adding your own personal touch to each piece. You can make any piece of furniture look brand-new with some simple changes like painting it, adding new hardware, or taking it apart and rebuilding it to turn it into something new.

DIY: If you’re handy with a hammer and nails, don’t be afraid to try your hand at some DIY furniture. Building your own furniture creates feelings of pride and a sense of satisfaction. It’s also an excellent way to save money on new items like tables or chairs.

Get sales alerts: Sign up for sales alerts from some of your favorite furniture stores. Many retailers offer deep discounts at various times of the year, which means you could save a lot of cash if you’re patient.

Time your shopping: Many local furniture salespeople have quotas and work on commission, which means they might be willing to offer you a deal at certain times of the month. Ask if they can provide you with a deal or throw in free delivery to help you save a bit of extra money.

How to care for and maintain your furniture

Lady sat on sofa, exhausted from hoovering image
Lady sat on sofa, exhausted from hoovering image

With so many furniture styles and options to choose from, it’s important to maintain and care for each item to keep it in good condition. Here are a few do’s and don’ts to keep in mind when it comes to furniture maintenance.

Do’s

  • Remove dirt, dust, and debris from wood furniture, often using a soft, damp cloth or paper towel.
  • Take care of wood furniture by polishing it regularly and using a gentle, silicone-free furniture cleaning product.
  • Repair scratches as soon as possible, using a furniture touch-up pen that matches the finish.
  • Keep furniture out of direct sunlight, especially leather and wood, which can become discolored and dry out over time.
  • Only use cleaning products made for your furniture’s specific material to avoid damage.
  • Wipe spills immediately whenever liquid comes in contact with your furniture.
  • Rotate or flip seat cushions every few months to keep them comfortable and looking new.

Don’ts

  • Do not use an all-purpose cleaner, bleach, or abrasive cleaning products on your furniture.
  • Don’t put off dusting your furniture. Airborne particles can build up on wood, leaving a layer of dust and grime that may scratch the finish.
  • Never add a tablecloth to your tables until they’re completely dry.
  • Do not arrange your furniture near radiators, heat or air vents, and air conditioning units. Extreme temperature changes can easily damage furniture.
  • Don’t sit extremely hot or cold beverages or food directly on top of your furniture – use a coaster or protective cover like a tablecloth.
  • Avoid placing your furniture close to the fireplace or wood-burning stoves.

If you just got married, just became independent, just moved to college, or are just ready to start buying furniture for your new place, be sure to keep these helpful tips in mind. Remember to measure the rooms in your home as well as the dimensions of your new furniture to find a perfect fit. Choose furniture that fits your lifestyle, and shop garage sales and websites to help you find the best deal so you’ll have fabulous furniture the whole family will enjoy for years to come.

 

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IronFire Furniture on Location

IronFire Event Table
We pride ourselves on using stunning images of our industrial IronFire furniture for our website and social media – we want to inspire people with our furniture and provide ideas that are not only aspirational but also achievable. We quite often get asked how we come up with the images, so here are a few pointers that we always tend to be driven by whether taking images for our Facebook and Instagram; our product pages on our website, or our Houzz and Pinterest accounts.

 

  1. Talk
Quite often our ideas are bandied about our office as jokes or from things that our staff have seen and noticed from their weekends or even on the drive to work! These start off as “Have you seen…?” or “This would look so cool…” and from there develop into an idea for a shoot. They are not always conventional (putting a coffee table into a tree anyone?) but sometimes from these random conversations, great shoots are produced!

 

  1. Plan
From these ideas, we plan out the shoot using a moodboard. This will include props that we need, and our aims and targets from the shoot. We make sure that the product in question is always the focus – be it our planter or  console table.

 

  1. Crib Sheet
We have a pre-planned standard photo shoot crib sheet that we take to every shoot with us. It details house angles, house shots and things we need to remember to take with us. We’ve been caught out before coming back from a shoot and saying “We forgot to take X shot” so this makes sure that we come back with everything that we want.

 

  1. Photographer
We have our own in-house photographer. This is really handy for us, as it means that we can be spontaneous with our shoots (rare sunny day? Camera out!) and that he is fully aware of the IronFire product branding and what we need to achieve from each shoot.

 

  1. Be flexible
You may have an idea in your head that sounds great in theory, but on the camera screen isn’t really working. If that’s the case, why not turn it into something else? Change the angles, change the props, use the shoot to take advantage of close ups or the product. Our Shou sugi-ban table tops are stunning, and often the focus of a shoot as well as the main piece of IronFire furniture.

 

  1. There’s no I in team
The photoshoot may be your baby, but sometimes others in your team can look at what you’re doing with fresh eyes and come up with a new angle or way to take a shot. You really have nothing to lose by taking this on-board, and our attitude is that it’s better to come back to the studio with more shots of the industrial iron table or chairs than you need instead of not enough and wishing that you’d taken more!

 

7. We believe in supporting local businesses (see our other blog posts for examples of these) so find that they are more than happy to let us use their locations to shoot our products in return for mentions on our website and social media accounts. This is a great way of networking and providing leads back for others as well as getting great shots in environments that you may not easily have access to!

 

  1. Edit
We have people well skilled in Photoshop which enables us to adjust our images to the size and finish that we want. We also make sure that fonts are the same when putting text onto images and resize them all for social media platforms. We like consistency: this is important for our IronFire branding.

 

  1. Learn from Each Shoot
We value feedback, and analyse each shoot to see what works for us and what doesn’t. The whole team is involved in this (and we have very different ideas on what we like and what we don’t like!) but it’s great to get differing perspectives on our results – and learn and grow from them.

 

  1. Results
And then all there is left to do is pat each other on the backs when you’ve achieved great images that started off as an idea in someone’s head! Make sure you’re proud of them. We know we are.
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