Costs for furnishing a home can really add up, especially when heading out to retail settings to make your purchases. However, there could be a variety of cost-cutting options to create not just a livable environment, but one that has some style and character, and maybe more importantly, one that is affordable.
Our family managed to utilize several cost-cutting options when furnishing our own home. And in the process, we created a living room space with furniture that fits our personal style, looks great, but only cost us about $43.
We have two chairs that fit with our small dining room table (since our living room is combined with our dining room space). They were chairs that were in bad condition and left in the in-laws’ garage to collect dust. We bought two dollars worth of fabric, used some upholstery tacks given to us by my wife’s grandfather, and reupholstered the seats. It was quick, cheap, and reasonably easy, plus we got the personalized look of the fabric we wanted for our living space.
We have a sofa and a futon in our living room area. Both are in good condition and came from parents who no longer wanted them. The cover on the futon is ripped on one side, so we simply flipped that side over so that it’s hidden on the bottom now. This simple action saved us anywhere from $30 to $80 or more on a completely new cover.
The sofa (a nice vintage piece) stunk like dog (from the in-laws’ two dogs that used to sleep on it). Therefore, when we rented a carpet cleaner for our home, we also rented the upholstery attachment for an extra $8. I deodorized and then cleaned the sofa multiple times when cleaning our carpets so that it no longer stunk.
Two of the most prized possessions in our living room came from the trash. They are small, vintage end tables that just needed some TLC. They looked terrible when we found them, but they were intact and all their drawers (and even the cut glass top for one) remained.
I pulled them from the trash, cleaned and sanded them, and then used a stain/polyurethane combo to finish them. The brush to do the job finishing job, sandpaper, and finish ran about $7 total and the outcome had the pieces clean and looking great.
Lamps and accessories
We have two lamps in our living room space. One (a vintage piece with marble base) was given to us by a neighbor who was selling their home. The other (another vintage piece) was damaged and deteriorating in our in-laws’ garage. It was missing the glass shade and the on/off switch was also gone. Therefore, I found a great antique glass shade at a garage sale for $3, a switch at our home supply store for $2, and cleaned the lamp itself up and had it looking great and working for just $5.
Meanwhile, our television cost us $10 at a garage sale and works just fine (given, it’s not a flat screen, but we don’t care), and we have several paintings hung on the walls, one of which we purchased for $8 at a garage sale and that matches our décor and color scheme perfectly, and two more that were done by my mother (she’s an artist) that only cost us $3 to purchase frames for at our local resale shop.
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The author is not a licensed financial or design professional. This article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute advice of any kind. Any action taken by the reader due to the information provided in this article is solely at the reader’s discretion.