When it comes to furnishing your home, the way you do it has changed over the years. Today, there are more options than ever before for creating a comfortable living room space that fits your personality, no matter the size of your budget.
While creating a great-looking space on a budget is a balancing act for any shopper, it can be particularly challenging for single moms. According to a report by the National Women’s Law Center, the median income for single mothers is $35,400 – well below the median income of $85,300 for married couples.
In addition, just shopping for affordable living room furniture can be a challenge for single moms, who face a greater time crunch. That means you may not have the time to do a lot of comparison shopping, but at the same time, you want to put together a space that looks good and makes a comfortable, welcoming environment.
Creating the Space That’s Right For You
Finding inexpensive and attractive living room furniture is easier than ever before, thanks to the rise in ready-to-assemble, or RTA, furniture. This furniture concept makes it possible to put together a home on virtually any budget with a variety of themes, but it doesn’t have the same durability as higher quality living room furniture and is often considered disposable.
“Sometimes, it might seem like a better deal to buy ready-to-assemble furniture, but it’s not always your best choice,” says Julie Knowlton, a home renovator and decorator in Athens, Georgia. “While it may look good initially, you want to think of how it’s going to do over the long term. You might be better off looking for one or two high-quality main pieces, and then build your look around them.”
Knowlton advises that parents, in particular, think about what is required from the furniture in the coming years: “You want the look to be able to fit your lifestyle, but you also want to know it’s going to be high quality and safe as your children grow.”
Affordable Options, High-End Look
Getting the right furniture within your budget could mean thinking outside of the usual big box store when it comes time to shop. These days, finding furniture that’s within your budget but doesn’t look cheap is easier than you might think.
In fact, this is a time when it’s possible to get a lot of great deals on furniture, experts say. With Baby Boomers downsizing, there are great finds at resale stores. Opting for gently used furniture gives you access to higher quality pieces at a much lower price than if you bought them new. Another option is to buy refurbished furniture.
Gently used furniture means the furniture has been used, but still has some life left in it. It may have small stains or other imperfections, but probably has a good structure. Refurbished furniture has been cleaned and restored to return it to as close to its original condition as possible.
When buying used, keep in mind that it might take a little shopping around to find the look that’s right for you. This is where online shopping can be a real timesaver.
There are several different ways to shop for used furniture, including garage sales, thrift stores, and consignment stores, but you may not be able to buy a complete set, or the furniture might be a little more worn than you’d like it to be. (Another downside of shopping for furniture this way is the time it takes to go from one store or garage sale to the next, since they don’t have an online inventory to browse.)
Buying refurbished furniture from a respected outlet like CORT Clearance Center can provide the best of both worlds. As with buying new, you have an ample selection of high quality items, but the prices are much lower and on par with the cost at consignment or used furniture stores.
A grading scale helps CORT determine the level of discount given to each piece of furniture sold. That scale ranges from A, which is showroom condition, to D, which are pieces that have some wear and tear but are still very functional and usable.
Even better, CORT Clearance Centers also sell items like accessories, rugs and artwork, so you can create an entire look in a single shopping trip.
Furnishing your living room with high quality furniture means you have solid, attractive furniture for years to come. When it’s time to invest in furniture that looks great without costing a fortune, CORT Clearance Centers provide you with a one-stop solution.