When you are constantly redesigning rooms, renting or just starting out in your first home then finding unique and good quality furniture at a reasonable price can be quite difficult.
Over the past few years I have honed my favourite places to pick up a bargain and now that Christmas is out of the way it's the perfect time to get furniture as people are clearing out their homes from the Christmas rush! For me, I want high quality pieces that have a bit of a history behind them and you tend to find that older furniture is made to a really high standard. Unless I really like the look of something on the high street, normally I get my furniture from one of these places. Of course it doesn't always happen on the first trip and you often have to be patient, visiting several times over the course of a month.
I wanted to do a top 5 places to pick up furniture but it turns out that I couldn't leave out one of the places!
1. Charity Shops
These can be a bit hit and miss and really depends on the area that the charity shop is located in. Pick ones that are in rural areas, that are not overly 'trendy' to live in or are full over people over the age of 40 (they tend to be clearing their houses out!) and not ones which are in large student areas or densely populated.
This is because most of the good stuff will have already been snapped up or there is more IKEA furniture that good quality older pieces. You also need to be careful as a lot of charity shops have cottoned on to the whole up cycling trend and so charge more for pieces than they ever would have previously. I would focus on ones which specialise in furniture as they tend to have a lot to get rid of and don't be afraid to ask for a discount! Ones in Romsey or Winchester (near the tip_
I have picked up tables, chest of drawers and blanket boxes for between £5 to £10!
This is often a forgotten place to find pieces of furniture, I think its because everyone thinks it's a hidden away world and often auctions are not widely advertised! Auctions mean that you can get lots of pieces in a relatively short piece of time.
Despite what TV has led us to believe, you don't have to go to the bid and nod your head like some secret code. Instead often there is an online catalogue that in the weeks before hand you can browse in your own time or if you want to see the pieces in person (which I highly recommend to check for hidden damage or sticky drawers) you can visit the showroom in the week before and leave your bid on a commission slip.
If no-one else is interested in the pieces you like then you often get them for the guide price - however its important to note that you have to pay a percentage of the hammer price to the auction house (this can mean you pay way over what you budgeted for) and you also have to collect the item within 24 hours, so plan ahead if you think you'll need a van to move it!
3. Furniture Warehouse
Places such as Molly's Den or Robin's Nest are great if you want to pick up a piece of furniture that has already been painted and sometimes they have unfinished pieces as well. Sometimes you do have to hunt to find an absolute bargain but often the furniture is cheaper than an IKEA equivalent and will last much longer. There are also lots of vintage treasures, trinkets and gorgeous mirrors.
They do offer a delivery service but this is extra, but you can reserve a piece to collect at a later date if you want to get your own van. There are over 180 traders within Molly's Den so you are pretty much guaranteed to find something that you probably didn't know that you needed 😉
4. Car Boot Sales
Now, I have to confess that I never actually go to the Car boot sales despite getting lots of my furniture there! My very lovely dad gets up at some hour that I don't think actually exists on a Sunday morning to grab the best bargains! If you want the absolute best bargains that you need to get there early but you can still pick up the odd bit later in the day if it has been hidden under lots of other bits and pieces.
If you are in Hampshire then the bridgemary car boot sale is particularly good since they stopped by local one in Burseldon to build more houses - do they not know we need to get bargains?!
5. Tip Shop!
This is a particular secret spot for me and something that many people over look. In my local tip there is a little corner which you can purchase things from, often these are not sign posted but there is a collection of furniture normally inside a cabin. These don't tend to have prices on, so you can negotiate with the people that work there. The furniture comes from people who drop things off at the tip but the items are still in good order so are saved from the containers! Its nice to save something that would have otherwise gone to landfill :)
6. eBay or Gumtree
This isn't one that I use very often, but you can get some really good deals if you are willing to travel. Only use the collect only filter as these pieces often go cheaper as the person selling as no way to moving it themselves.
I hope this gives you some ideas on where to pick up a bargain piece of second hand furniture! Don't worry if it's looking a bit tired, a splash of Autentico Paint and it will look brand new ☺️ There are over 150 colours to choose from and are available to be posted out from £3 postage 😘