Furniture Buying Guides
Chosing a piece of furniture is fun but can also be a headache! There are a wide variety of considerations that you will need to account for. But so long as you take a little time to think these matters through before you take the plunge and buy, then your purchase should go smoothly. Most of these points may seem obvious, but you may find a couple of pointers that will save both you and the retailer a lot of hassle.
You’ll have to consider the style of the furniture, practicality, and your budget. These fairly obvious points:
- Style: Do you like the look of the furniture?
- Practicality: Will the furniture do what what you need it to do?
- Budget: Can you afford it?
You are bound to have thought of those factors already, but there are so many more things to think about:
You’ll need to think about the size of the piece of furniture. Will it fit into where you want it to go?
Not only that, will it fit through your front door or any corridors or stairways that the furniture will have to pass through in order to reach its final position in your home. You’ll have to consider if the furniture is flat pack or fully assembled. If it’s flat-pack furniture, or needs some minor assembly, then access into the home will be less of an issue, but do you have the skills and patience required to put the furniture together or does the supplier offer an assembly service?
What if you want to buy more than one piece of furniture for your home. Do you want all the pieces to match? Or would you like the furniture to be more eclectic in style and be a mixture of contrasting or complementary styles? If matching furniture is a priority, then does the range you like contain all the pieces you are looking for? Furniture ranges vary in the pieces that they offer. Most will have the standard items, such as a coffee table or a TV unit, but many do not include a corner display unit for example. Additionally, you may find a range that has all the elements you need but one of them may be a fraction too large to fit where you need it in your room, so either you have to look for another furniture range or make a compromise and chose a complementary piece.
The Furniture Retailer
What about the retailer? Are they reputable? This may be a big ticket item! Your hard earned cash needs to be in safe hands and you need to feel you can trust the retailer. Some online furniture ‘shops’ are nothing more than a guy working from his kitchen at home and may have no furniture industry experience and no stock at all. These are go-betweens between wholesalers and the customer and should be treated with caution. Find out the status of the retailer that you are dealing with:
- Do they carry stock?
- Are they a ‘real’ retailer or just an agent?
- Research their feedback.
- How quickly can they deliver?
- Do they charge for delivery?
- What is their returns policy?
- Do they use their own delivery team or do they outsource?
- Do they assemble the items if required?
- Do they deliver to the room of your choice, even if it’s upstairs?
- Do they call you to inform of delivery times?
- Do they take the packaging away?
Beware False Offers!
You will see everywhere on the web the claim that a piece of furniture is “less than half price” or that the recommended retail price is £1999 and the sale price is only £399 for example. You know the type of thing. These are often false claims and should be taken with a pinch of salt. There are codes of conduct for retailers when advertising recommended retail prices but many less scupulous retailers simply make up inflated prices to make their selling price look like a bargain. Look out for that and do not be taken in by it.
Above all, Price is not everything!
You may see the same item of furniture on many different websites. each site may have their own price for the same item. Of course, price is an important issue, but you must take into account the wider points also. The cheapest looking supplier may not always be the wisest choice! Often they are cheap for a reason. Furniture is an expensive business to be in. The costs involved in delivery, storage, administration and marketing are huge and so if a business is offering a piece of furniture at an unbelievable price, check them out thoroughly. There could be an underlying reason that the item is so cheap.
All these considerations will have to be made when buying your furniture and we are here to help. Have a look at our articles that talk about individual types of furniture and the various factors that you will need to take into account when buying.