DesignHome ImprovementsReal EstateTips&Tricks March 23, 2024

Designer Tips for Saving Money on Furniture and Decor

Design Your Space Without Spending a Fortune

After thumbing through countless interior design magazines, scrolling through Instagram, and binging HGTV, you might think you need a massive budget to make your home shine. But with a little digging and a few insider tips, you can achieve a designer look in your space without draining your wallet.


Save Money When You Design Your Home

If you’re ready to make a change in your bedroom, living room, or another space in your house, it doesn’t have to cost a ton of money. Here are three helpful tips to encourage you to flex your design muscles without fear of breaking the bank.

1. Don’t Click on the First Piece You See

These days, lots of people, designers included, do their shopping online. There are countless options available for home decor, furniture, accessories, and anything else you can imagine. But when you find the piece of your dreams, don’t rush to purchase the first one you see.

If you take some time to dig a little deeper into the realm of the online marketplace, you might be surprised at what you find. In many cases, you’ll discover the same exact piece on several different retail sites. The best part is, most of the time, each retailer has a different price for the item, so you can possibly score what you want at a lower cost.

The reason for this is pretty simple. Many manufacturers make a piece and ship it to several retailers who in turn decide how they want to price the item. Sometimes, you’ll even discover the same exact photo used by multiple stores. So how do you find all the different places that sell the sofa, or lamp, or whatever it is you’re trying to buy?

How to Find the Same Piece at Different Prices

One trick is to use a reverse image search tool, like TinEye, to uncover all the places the picture turns up online. All you need is the image URL. (Right-click on the image, click “copy image address,” and paste it into the reverse image site’s search feature.)

When you do this, it will show you everywhere else the image appears online, giving you insight on what other stores carry the item. Google Lens is another way to unearth these retail secrets if you’re scrolling through pictures on your phone. is a website devoted to making sure you don’t overpay for something by showing all the various purchase options. For example, let’s say you find the sofa of your dreams on West Elm. Pop over to and pull up the piece using the store search feature. Then, the site will direct you to all the other places online that offer the same item so you can compare prices.

2. Don’t Skip Second Hand Stores

Second hand shops can be a veritable goldmine for treasures at bargain prices. The critical things to remember are to purchase items that you know you can clean easily and to keep a keen eye so you don’t purchase things that are beyond repair.

For example, you may want to skip the used throw pillows that look a little worn and dusty and could potentially harbor hidden pests. But that gorgeous wooden chair with the upholstered seat? If the bones are good, scoop it up.

Give it a good dusting and polish. If the upholstery seems worn, it’s super easy to recover a chair seat. Basically, secondhand shopping can be a successful endeavor if you keep your wits about you and are willing to add a little elbow grease post purchase to spruce up the pieces.

3. Reassess Your Current Pieces

Before you completely count out your existing furniture and decor, is there anything you can reimagine? Could you reupholster your sofa or add a high-quality slipcover? What about changing the color of your side chairs with a fresh coat of paint? Would a lamp from another room be the perfect finishing touch in the space you’re recreating?

 In other words, sometimes we grow bored or blind with the current state of our home. Simply switching things around or giving something a new look can make a big difference for minimal cost.

 If you decide to go this route, make sure the piece is structurally sound and the shapes and lines fit your current style. If the bones are good, you can change most things about their appearance by altering paint, fabric, texture, embellishments, etc.

It Doesn’t Take a Big Budget to Make a Big Design Change

If you want to change things a bit in your home, it’s easy to get carried away with a full-on remodel and redesign. But this undoubtedly can lead you down a rabbit hole of expensive choices. Before you start draining your savings or scrapping your design dreams, remind yourself that you can make a big change on a budget.

 Shop around, especially online. You’ll often find the same exact piece for less from other retailers. Add secondhand shopping to your list of design to-dos, and go shopping in your home. Some of the pieces that are already taking up space in your house could be the perfect addition to your newly imagined room.



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