We Carusos house a lively mix of vintage, new, and sentimental pieces of furniture throughout our space. Over the years, we have bought and sold furniture on Craigslist with success. Just last winter, we upgraded all of our living room and bedroom furniture after selling our older pieces, most of them within a week of posting. If you are in the market, and can't find enough value for your budget even at stores like HomeGoods and Target, you may want to do a search on Craigslist. Here are 5 best practices to keep in mind while sifting through the listings.
SEARCH BY OWNER
Rather than working with dealers, who usually look to move greater quantities of items, search by owner. They usually are willing to negotiate the price, especially if you can make a quick sale, because they have personal investment in seeing the piece go to the right home at the right time.
ALWAYS LOOK FOR 'PHOTOS ATTACHED' POSTS
Honestly, I don't recommend buying anything without at least seeing a proper photo first. The composition of the photo also tells you a little about who you're buying from. Some sellers take time to fluff the pillows, wipe down fingerprints, and photograph in natural light to showcase the very best of the piece, and to my horror, others post photos of the piece as it sits in their damp garage with a hefty layer of dust.
USE BROAD KEYWORDS TO SEARCH
When I was searching for a leather couch, I exhausted every listing without anything peaking my interest. Once I searched leather sofa, about a dozen listings I hadn't seen before came up, and some with options that interested me. For example, if it's a solid wood table you need, search wood dining table, wood kitchen table, round table, you get the idea. You can even include key words like, "french country" or "modern" to suit your tastes.
SCHEDULE A GO-SEE BEFORE COMMITTING TO BUY & BRING A FRIEND
Never feel obligated to purchase something on the spot. I recommend scheduling a Go-See with the seller as soon as you can, to let them know of your interest without getting their hopes up. It is perfectly acceptable to see the piece and decide not to buy it, just as you would in a store or flea market. Bring a friend for a second opinion, and to help carry the item to the car!
HAVE ALLERGIES? ASK ABOUT SMOKING OR PET EXPOSURE
It's always a good idea to ask if the furniture has been in a home of smokers or pet owners in case you have allergies to either. Need more clues? Look for scratch marks on the legs, stains, or lingering pet hair.