Cast-offs can be your treasure

Are you on a tight budget and have just moved into your new property to find there is a bit more space than you thought? Perhaps you have taken your first step on the property ladder or are looking to rent out a second home? If so, you might be pleasantly surprised by the huge choice of quality second hand furniture that is available locally.

Competitively priced and often much better quality than most flat-packed options, buying second hand furniture should hold no fears for the consumer. Common concerns around the hygiene factors associated with reusing furniture can be easily addressed through professional cleaning or a vigorous going over with your own household products.

What’s more, the wide range available and the satisfaction of finding that quirky oddity to create a unique eclectic feel for your home can make it a rewarding exercise. Barbara Fleming from The Bargain Furniture Centre in Inverkeithing says “We sell just about anything from beds, living room suites, pianos and even office equipment, to people from all walks of life.”

“You will be amazed at the range and quality of furniture that we have for sale. We don’t just get customers who are shopping on a budget but often get those looking for something a wee bit unusual,” adds Barbara.

One tip while shopping is to make sure you bring an idea of the dimensions you are looking to fill. There is nothing worse than buying a piece only to discover it won’t fit the space you have available. Also, be wary of furniture made with MDF or particle board. These pieces are not normally built to last and may not withstand the purpose you had in mind.

Another option is to try restoring your used furniture. Although reupholstering is not quite as cheap an option as many might think, it can pay dividends, especially if the form and function of your piece is ideal for your new home, but the colour scheme is not.

Also reassuring is that the value isn’t just confined to your pocket. There is a positive environmental benefit to be  had, as giving a piece of furniture a second chance for a useful life is much more palatable in this day and age than condemning it to landfill.