Buying furniture can be frustrating and confusing, but if you have a little bit of knowledge about design, and the furniture business, it can save you time and money in the long run. Here are some furniture shopping tips to help you make the most of your furniture buying trip.

Puppy on sofa.  Furniture buying tips

Before we begin I want to remind you what we have learned about redesigning a room so far. In part one of family room remodel we discussed the first steps in doing any room remodel.

  • Planning out your space. What is the room going to be used for? What will you need in the room to make it function for you?
  • Deal with the bones. Start with items that are attached to the room such as the floor, walls, and any built in items such as a fireplace or cabinets. What do you need to replace or upgrade?
  • What do you need for furniture and accessories? Are you buying new or can you repurpose something?
  • Make a floor plan! Don’t make a mistake of buying something that wont work in the room.

Now we are going to take all this information and put it into action. Today we will discuss some great furniture shopping tips.

furniture buying tips

What should I keep in mind when buying furniture?

When you are buying large or expensive pieces of furniture it is best to stay with a neutral and/or traditional style.

This is because most people don’t buy big ticket furniture pieces very often. So, it needs to last, and will need to coordinate with smaller items that you may change out more frequently.

Another option would be to purchase a slip covered sofa. This way if you decide to redecorate your room, you can simply switch out the cover for a whole new look.

Make sure you make a floor plan before you purchase anything. There is nothing more frustrating then buying the perfect sofa and finding out it doesn’t even fit. Don’t just measure the room either. It has to fit in the door! If you don’t know how then read my post “How to make a floor plan”

Another way to check to make sure your furniture will fit in the room is to tape out the measurements on the floor with painters tape. This will give you a great indication of how much room a piece will take up in the space.

Ask for fabric swatches. Most furniture stores have swatches showing the different options available. Ask if you can borrow a swatch, if they don’t have ones you can buy. This is an important furniture shopping tip because you will be able to use this swatch to make sure your other purchases and decor will work with the material you chose.

If you can’t get a swatch then take a picture of the swatch outside in the daylight so you can get an accurate color representation. Furniture stores are full of florescent lighting and it will look different there then in your home.

Also, ask the sales person for fabric recommendations that would be best for you and your circumstances; kids, pets, etc.

While buying sets of furniture could save you money, try to coordinate your furniture pieces, not match them. Yes, your guaranteed that everything works together when you buy a set, but when everything’s the same it tends to be a little predicable and boring. Mix it up!

You will also want to keep scale in mind when buying your furniture. If you have a large room, and buy small scaled furniture, it will look like doll furniture and vise-versa. You don’t want a huge over-sized sofa in a small room.

When is the best time to purchase furniture

Sale.   The best time to purchase furniture
Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

There are some great times to buy furniture during the year. Two of them are during the holidays Memorial day and Veteran’s day. Furniture stores have some great sales around this time.

Next, is around the 4th of July and right after Christmas because furniture stores are trying to get rid of old inventory to make room for new stuff. You may see a lot of floor model sales during this time.


  1. It’s interesting to know that you need to consider planning your space when buying furniture to have a functional room. My husband and I are thinking about remodeling our guest’s room, and we are looking for advice about what to do. I will let him know about your recommendations to understand how to choose the right furniture.

    1. Ellie, Yes! Definitely you will need to consider first, what the room will be used for, and what you will need to make it work for that. Then you can think about how to make it pretty.

      My advice would be to make a list of everything you will need in the space, take lots of measurements, make a floor plan on paper to see what will fit and how it will fit, THEN go shopping. Here is a link to my post on how to make a floor plan. I hope it helps.

      I like to pick my paint color last…after I have all of my fabrics picked out. You can always match/or coordinate a paint color to anything but you can’t always match/coordinate fabrics and patterns to a paint color. And good luck with your guest room project.

  2. I appreciate that you explained finding a sofa with soft cushions and springs. My wife and I just bought our new home and we need to furnish it with a lot of new furniture. I’ll be sure to remember these tips so we can find pieces that we like and are also comfortable.

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