Say you need a new fluffy couch for for your family room... or an armoire for the guest room. Or maybe you're looking for a beautiful yet budget friendly piece of artwork to add a pop of color to your walls.
There is one place where you can find a bevy of amazing furniture finds: Seattle Goodwill. The stock is always changing, which means there is always a new treasure to be found. We caught up with Goodwill's Katherine Boury to get her tips on successful furniture shopping at Goodwill.
1. Check for Functionality: The Wiggle Test
See a piece of furniture you like? Give it the wiggle test!
Some pieces of furniture open, close, swivel and perform other functions and movements. Note to self - open and close drawers, cabinets, and check furniture otherwise to make sure nothing sticks and that it all works well. You might come across something that doesn’t lock properly. It’s worth taking the time to inspect everything. Otherwise, you might be dealing with this issue every time you try to open or close your furniture.
Some wobbly furniture can be fixed with some tightening of screws while other pieces of furniture need more work. Compared to the price of the piece, it might be worth it to have it professionally repaired if you are not up to the task. Harder types of wood, like oak, will hold up better in the long-run.
2. Buy Vintage
Try scouting out the vintage furniture to find something unique. Start with a vintage piece as the focus of your space and then build the room around them. When shopping for vintage find things that you absolutely love.
3. Double-Check Dimensions
Bring a tape measure with you to shop so you can double check the size. Ask yourself how a piece will fit in the intended room, as well as how it will be transported there and if it will fit in your elevator/stairs/doorway, etc.
4. Step Outside Your Comfort Zone
If you always visit your nearest Goodwill, try heading into a new neighborhood. You’ll be rewarded with a fresh selection of gently used furnishings, not to mention throw pillows and accessories you haven’t seen before. If you’re looking for something specific – for example an antique desk or a child’s bed – try visiting neighborhoods with pricier, older homes or lots of families with young kids.
5. Change the Time You Shop
If you always come in the morning try a different time of day. Goodwill puts out over 100,000 items in the stores every day so there is always something new. This one seems obvious, but you’d be surprised how many thrifty shoppers forget to arrive early to get the best bargains.
Because thrift stores like Goodwill rely on donations, new items can arrive at any time. However, many donations are made over the weekend when workers have a day off to do household errands. It can take a day or two to process these new arrivals.
6. Repurpose Old Furniture
You can make a table from a door, a bathroom vanity from a dresser or a planter from an old cradle. Think of what you need when you look around for second-hand furniture. You can make a truly unique piece of furniture for very little money.