Tips for Buying Second Hand Furniture at Auctions

Tips for Buying Second Hand Furniture at Auctions

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Published by TOP4 Team

Buying second hand furniture is sensible and cost effective. Yet, be careful when buying in auctions. Make sure that the goods are inspected thoroughly and you are conversant with new prices. Here are tips for you to make a worthwhile purchase.

Check out auctions or photos. Many websites have a photo preview or slideshow gallery of the pieces that are being offered. Make sure to check out the main sites and auctioneer's personal sites to get a full listing of what might be available. Photos can give you scale of a piece before you arrive as well as condition if you look closely.

Check a furniture out but don't look like you're checking it out. There's a natural reaction to walk into an auction and just start touching things. Examine a piece without showing any real interest and look for defects. Your enthusiasm can mean others bidding up your prices or auctioneers being able to take advantage of you.

Make the auctioneer drop the price. Most auctioneers take a cut in the percentage of the sales made the day of the auction. Just because they start the bidding at a certain price doesn't mean they won't come down. If no one bids, they'll take it lower and lower. Although it can be a little frustrating to repeat the process each time, it can save you some money. 

Buy what you can re-sell. Make sure the pieces you bring home can easily be cleaned or fixed up without much effort. You can usually sell them for 4 to 5 times what you purchased them for, if you were a savvy bidder!

Consider a furniture’s function and decide how else you could use it. For example, a sideboard could be made into a bathroom vanity, a wash stand into a table for the entry.

You can coat older furniture with 10 or even more layers of paint. These can be removed with paint stripper. Don’t underestimate the amount of work involved to return your piece to its original state.

You can modernise old fashioned stained furniture with attractive lines by applying high gloss lacquer in an up-to-date colour, but be sure to use the correct paint system. Bear in mind not all secondhand furniture is worthy of the restoration process, dollarwise, so engage your head as well as heart when making decisions.

Be wise about buying furnitures so you can save. Meanwhile, if you are looking for the best homeware and appliances in Australia, check this page out.


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