About| Property Search| List Property| Advertise| Contact

RSS Feed Twitter YouTube LinkedIn Facebook Pinterest G+

Knowing When to Skimp or Splurge

by Marquette Turner Luxury Homes

in Design & Trends, Interior Design, Variety

When you’re decorating a new apartment or home, you start to realize how much the costs can pile up. You’ll find there are many new pieces you need that you may have not needed before in your last space because you either shared items with a roommate, lived in a furnished apartment, or simply didn’t require pieces for a specific type of room that your new place has like an office, gym, or breakfast nook.

Instead of buying brand new, more expensive items, you may be tempted to run to an antique shop or accept and refurbish older furniture from family and friends. Sometimes this is a great move for decorating your new home, but with some household decor, it’s more important that you splurge for the new items.

This guide will break down the household items you should skimp on vs. the ones you should splurge on.


Source: Photo by Mark McCammon from Pexels

Pieces to skimp on

When you’re trying to decide if it’s okay to buy an item used, there are a few things you should consider. Can you refurbish, repurpose, or reinvent it?

If the answer is yes, then you should probably buy used. A quick DIY project will take some time, but it will save you a lot of costs. Before you refurbish a piece of furniture, make sure you’re prepared with the right materials and check that you’re capable of completing the project.


Whether you use bookcases for housing your favorite books or as a display for knick-knacks and family photos, a used bookcase will likely be just as functional as a new one. These are also relatively simple to construct if you want to build it yourself to give your home a personal touch.


Refurbishing and reinventing a dresser can make for a great weekend project. You can use paint, fabric, wallpaper, and stencils to redress your dresser from the inside out. Even the knobs can be replaced to be more decorative, modern, or fit to your style. It may seem like a simple household item, but a refinished dresser can be a fun emblem of your personality.


Tables are a great piece to buy used because they usually are in pretty good condition and they’re easy to fix up to your liking. When you start your search for a dining table, coffee table, desks, and side tables, start by searching for used pieces. You can sand and stain a table if it isn’t your color preference. You can also find ways to fix up any knicks or markings on the wood even using household items like lemon juice or coffee grounds!


Floor or table lamps are simple items to spruce up with a little TLC. Take an old lamp apart, prime and paint it, and make up the lamp shade how you like with fabric, embellishments, or ribbon. Let it dry and put the parts back together and voila, you gave a new life to an old lamp.

Wall decor/paintings

Unless your friends are art aficionados, no one will judge you for using generic art pieces as wall decor in your home. You can even DIY this one by putting some paint to a canvas and framing it to give the piece a finished look.


Pieces to splurge on

If you’re debating on splurging on an item but you can’t decide if it’s worth it, think about a few factors. Is this item important to your health? Does this item age and get worse over time? Can it collect dust mites, dirt, and other materials deep within the surface?

If you can answer yes to any or all of these questions, it’s worth it to splurge on that piece.


If you see a chair or couch sitting on the side of the curb, keep driving. Materials with soft, fabric surfaces could be harboring loads of dust and dirt underneath. While it’s simple to clean off a wooden table or disinfect a bookshelf, a used couch presents a much larger task that’s not worth the hassle. Many used couches also come with rips and stains. For the sake of having a presentable home, you need to accept that you’ll be splurging on your couches.


If the thought of sleeping on a used mattress doesn’t gross you out enough to refrain from purchasing a new one, the fact that it can contain dust mites, mold, bed bugs, fungi, and other microorganisms should. Mattresses also age and lose the qualities that help you get a good night’s sleep as the coils and other materials inside get worn out. The average lifespan of an innerspring mattress is 7-8 years, so buying used doesn’t make sense when you’ll have to replace with a new mattress soon. It’s worth it to do your research to find the best mattress instead of skimping out on your sleep.


When you’re decorating your living room, a rug will really tie together the whole room. Surprisingly, rugs can be pretty pricey. This may encourage you to buy used, but an old rug has no place in your home. Although there are services that can vigorously clean a rug, there are some stains and smells that may never lift from the mat. Go for a new rug to tie your room together the right way.


Just like rugs, your carpet can also hold dirt, stains, and unpleasant smells. Know the signs you need new carpeting and don’t be afraid to splurge. Your carpet/flooring will be seeing a lot of foot traffic in your home, and your shoes will be bringing in outside dirt, so you won’t be wasting your time debating on your options and going all out on your flooring.

When it’s more up to you

Some items are simply up to personal preference when it comes to saving or splurging. Think about the theme of your home and what seems most appropriate to you when you make these decisions.

Kitchen appliances

If you’re looking for a new fridge, stove, microwave, or other kitchen appliances, there probably isn’t a lot of harm in buying used as long as the items are functional. You can clean them pretty easily if they are dirty, and it will definitely save you money in the long run. However, you may prefer modern appliances, in which case it makes sense to splurge.


For household electronics like televisions, gaming systems, or computers, you’ll save a ton of money by going used. If the latest and greatest technology is important to you, buying new will be better for you.


A crib is only used for short period of time and often ends up sitting gathering dust in someone’s attic, so many people now sell their used cribs. There is a bit of a debate as to whether a used crib is safe or not, so do your research and decide what’s best for your home.

Author bio: Laurie Larson is a freelance writer from Durham, NC. She enjoys constantly reinventing her home and focusing on her personal and home health in her spare time.


Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: