If you’ve kept up with our Renovating a Rental series, during our last update we scored a gently used Värde from IKEA to organize our kitchen. We love how it keeps our kitchen simple and tidy.
We saved $200 plus at least thirty minutes in assembly time by purchasing the Värde on Craigslist. I’m addicted to anything that saves me time and money. Since then, I’ve been trolling Craigslist daily for deals on gently used items that we could use to update the ol’ girl. Despite ST’s disdain for buying preowned items, he has been a champ. Not only is he a good sport when I bug him about this coffee table or that lamp, he picks up my Craigslist treasures and assembles them when need be. He is the best.
With one win under my belt, I began my next search – a coffee table. We already had a coffee table and there was technically nothing wrong with it, so I couldn’t justify buying something new.
When ST and I moved into our apartment, we didn’t have any furniture besides ST’s bed so we filled up our space with a few trips to IKEA and with little consideration. Consequently, we ended up with a cheap but functional coffee table from IKEA for $60. Here’s the little guy in this old apartment tour picture:
It served for a over a year until I got tired of how crumbs got stuck under the glass, that there was no storage space, and things looked messy. That’s when I turned to mi amigo Craig. You guys, a lot of people sell coffee tables on Craigslist and most of them are overpriced.
I quickly learned to steer clear of ads with any mention of “price firm” or “no low ballers.” I had no desire to have unpleasant exchanges with people who were inflexible. For example, I emailed a seller to negotiate the price of an expandable coffee table. I got the price down to $70 from $85. However, he added “That’s it. There are no more negotiations when you come to pick it up.” That nasty line was a red flag for me so I passed. Lo and behold, he emailed me again a few weeks later to tell me that the table was still available. Shocking.
Anyway, a dozen inquiries and two months later, we ended up with this beautiful dark brown West Elm Parsons coffee table for $75. They no longer sell this model on their website, but it originally retailed for $300.
The seller was a nice guy in the Financial District who originally asked for $150. Not only did he sell it for half price, he helped ST carry it into our car. You’ll see a picture when we finally finish revamping our living room, promise.
After that, I moved onto something we should have bought a long time ago – a bed frame. ST and I never got one. We were so busy buying stuff for parts of the apartment that people actually see that we neglected the most important room of all. As a result, we discovered that sleeping on bed rails for a year and half isn’t so hot on your back.
I’ve always wanted a canopy bed. There’s something about sleeping ensconced within a fortress of four posts that makes me feel like a princess. Well, that and sleeping next to ST, of course. Alas, a regal slumber comes at a high cost. The lowest price I could find was upwards of $600 for a new canopy bed. That simply would not do.
Thus began my long and arduous search of the perfect canopy bed. It took a few months but we finally found it.
Behold, my greatest find to date – the Architecture Bed by Room and Board. Retail price is $999.00 + $89.00 delivery fee + $96.56 taxes = $1,184.56.
Our price? $350 for the bed + $70 for the truck rental to move this massive beast = $420. Hello, $764.56 discount. Side note: This is not our room, but a stock photo.
We love it! It’s very sturdy, attractive, and supportive. I’ve been sleeping better and have no more back pain. It literally took us 15 minutes to assemble. ST rented a truck, loaded it, and unloaded it all by himself. I’ll say it again – my man is the best.
Don’t be afraid to negotiate and be honest about your budget. We purchased the bed from a nice French couple prior to moving out of the country and thus needed to get rid of everything. Their original asking price was $450. I got it down to $400. Initially, ST and I were okay with that – it was still less than half of the retail price. Then, the cheapo in me decided $400 was still too much. So I told the seller and wished him luck in finding a home for his gorgeous bed frame. To my surprise, he lowered the price to $350 and held it for us until the end of the week. Ding, ding – we had a winner.
The moral of the story?