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Furnish your apartment for R5000 or less!

When you are starting out on your own, and unless your parents are extremely generous, you are going to need furniture for your new apartment or flat. Chances are you don't have a large budget, so here's how to get started without spending a fortune.


Today there are some really great sites on the Internet that you can use to search for furniture and items. Sites such as,, and are filled with the most amazinbg bargains to be bought from people who are moving, emigrating, or downsizing. Even at estate and liquidation auctions they usually offer a long list of furniture and household items that can be had at affordable prices.

Take some time to search online on various sites and remember to designate your area. You don't want to find furniture in Cape Town when you live in Joburg, and vice-versa. Also bear in mind that you are not going to find everything in one go, or at the same time and need to be patient.





When browsing online auctions and sites that advertise secondhand items, spend a few minutes every day during your coffee break to browse through recently posted items to find the real bargains. The best bargains are always the first to be snapped up, so a daily search will allow you to grab these before someone else does.


Here are some tips to make your online searches easier:

  • Set a limit for how much you are prepared to spend. Most sites allow you to indicate the minimum an maximum price, so that you don't have to browse through endless ads for items that are over your price limit.
  • Be as specific as possible for what you are looking for. If you are looking for a wood coffee table that is traditional or modern, be sure to include this in your search terms.
  • Try to buy direct and avoid dealers, as you will find this this works out more expensive than buying items secondhand from the existing owner.
  • While upholstered furniture can be deep, steam cleaned you might want to personally view this type of furniture before buying. Where upholstered furniture has been previously owned by pet lovers or smokers, you might find it almost impossible to get rid of old smells unless you have the furniture re-upholstered and pay almost as much as what it costs to buy new furniture.

Things to take into consideration:

Whenever the possibility arises make arrangements to inspect furniture that is on offer. If you intend on collecting furniture, take the opportunity to check out the general condition before loading up - photographs can be misleading.

Having said that it's also good to see past the damage and envisage the potential. It might not look perfect, but as long as it is well-built and has good structure you can fix up, paint or repair mismatched or dated furniture and still stay within your budget.

Don't provide too much personal information. There are too many fly-by-night operators out there who are only in it for the information that can be garnered from individuals. Protect your identity and perhaps even set up a free email account for the purpose of online searches and related contacts with sellers.

Adapted from an article via women24