In the past year, many of us have spent more time than ever inside of our homes. After looking at the same four walls—and the same couch and chairs and tables—you might be craving a refresh. Furniture sellers like West Elm, CB2, Wayfair and Overstock.com are known for their broad selection and good prices, but that doesn’t mean you can’t save more on your purchases. Here are seven tips for paying less when furnishing your interiors.
Sign up for newsletters. If you can deal with the temptation of promotional emails, sign up for the email lists of retailers that you might patronize, many of which offer a one-time discount of 10% to 15%. “You might even get a few hours’ head start to shop a sale,” adds Carlos Coronado, lead designer at the design firm Muretti.
Look for coupons. Deal sites like Honey and Rakuten often offer extra discounts that can be applied to your order. If you don’t find savings at your favorite deal site, try using the chat box on the retailer’s site to ask if any promo codes can be applied to your order.
Shop the back room. For in-store shopping, Ilian Georgiev, CEO and co-founder of personal finance app Charlie, suggests asking a salesperson if they are willing to sell you items from “the back room” at a discount. These items might be on their way to the outlet anyway, so some stores will be glad to sell them to you instead. You can also ask to purchase floor models at a discount.
Inspect carefully. If you’re in-store, give items you are interested in a thorough once-over. If there is any visible damage, even if it’s in an area that will never see the light of day, it’s perfectly reasonable to ask for a discount.
Compare prices. Some items will be available at more than one retailer, so before checking out, compare prices using a tool like Google Shopping or, in the case of Wayfair, checking its sister sites—Birch Lane, AllModern, Joss & Main and Perigold. While these sites differ somewhat in their product mix, they may carry the same or similar items and will usually price-match one another. So, if you find a better price at Joss & Main but would prefer to shop at Wayfair, contact Wayfair’s customer service and ask for a price match.
Shop the outlet. Some brick-and-mortar furniture stores, like West Elm, Ashley Furniture and Raymour & Flanigan, have outlets where you’ll find rock-bottom prices. They might be last season’s styles but may check the boxes for what you’re seeking.
Don’t forget clearance. Coronado likes to peruse clearance sections. “You may have to compromise with the look just a bit,” he says, “but when you are selecting something with a similar appearance but paying half of the price, you will be glad that you started your search there.”
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Trae Bodge is a lifestyle journalist and shopping expert with a passion for helping people save money.