4 Key Tips for Using Home Decor Stores Online

Using home decor stores online to furnish your apartment is a smart move. Advance prep and research is the key to ensuring that you end up with the best furnishings at the best prices. These tips will make your online buying experience a win all around.

If you’re ready to decorate your NY apartment, home decor stores online can be a godsend. Online shopping has made it possible to simultaneously buy a toaster, bake a chocolate babka, and binge-watch Sherlock, all while dying your hair and dressed in yesterday’s jammies and your old bunny slippers. If you’re in the process of furnishing your home, online shopping can turn what was once an arduous and unbelievably booooring task into something fun, exciting, and relatively effortless.

On the flip side, if you’re not careful, online shopping can turn your furniture-buying experience into an extraordinarily expensive, headache-inducing exercise that drains and then empties your patience and your wallet.

1. Comparison Shop Before You Drop (Your Cash)

Just because you can buy it online doesn’t mean you should buy it online. Say you found the Chesterfield sofa of your dreams at an online store called Chesterfields-R-Us.com. You should still do a little more Googling to see if the sofa is being sold anywhere else for a cheaper price. You may discover that the Chesterfield in question is being sold at WeLoveBritishSofas.com for nearly a third less than the other site is charging. Factor in shipping costs, too. Chesterfields-R-Us.com may offer free shipping if you spend over a certain amount, while the other site may charge a hefty shipping fee that erases those 33 percent savings you were so gung ho about.

2. Always Measure Before Buying That Treasure

There probably isn’t a worse feeling in the world (at least when it comes to furniture shopping) than the one that descends upon you when you realize that that one-of-a-kind Chesterfield sofa you ordered won’t even fit into your apartment. Before you buy, pull out the measuring tape to make sure the item can make it through your door. Then measure the rooms that they’ll go into to ensure that they’ll fit inside the space. Make sure you take note of height, depth, and width. You need to know how far the item is going to jut out into the room. If you don’t, you might have to hire a furniture doctor to disassemble your new item, bring it into the house, and reassemble it — a process that will set you back a few hundred dollars.

3. Stay Logged into Social Media So You Stay Up to Speed …

You may be one of those people who avoid social media the way paleo dieters avoid donuts, but buying furniture is one time you should be prepared to cross your digital picket line. By monitoring business Facebook pages or signing up for alerts from top retailers, furniture stores, and flash sale sites like One Kings Lane, Chairish, and Gilt, you’ll be the first to know when things like top-of-the-line furniture, kitchen items, and home accessories go on sale. And we’re talking about brands like Frette, Mitchell Gold, Ralph Lauren, and Cuisinart that can go for as much as 50 to 70 percent off — and maybe even higher. It’s all about the timing.

4. Make Sure Things Can Be Returned So You Don’t End Up Burned!

Before using home decor stores online, always check the seller’s return policy. Certain furniture and accessories, especially sale items, are nonrefundable or exchange only. Oftentimes they’re final sale. This means that if there’s something wrong with your item, you could very well be stuck with it. Go over the return policies with a fine-toothed comb.

Image Source: Flickr/Dave Pinter

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4 Comments

  1. john Mahoney
    December 19, 2016

    I agree that making sure you can return any unsatisfactory items can be a life saver. I wouldn’ want to buy something and then find out that it is damaged or it doesn’t fill my expectations, and on top of that I can’t return it. I will make sure to use the tips you have listed, I want to have good honest business when I buy online, thank you.

    Reply
    • Victoria Keichinger
      December 21, 2016

      Thanks for your comment, John!

      Reply
  2. John
    February 21, 2017

    I think these are all really good tips for buying home decor online. Buying online can be such a convenience that sometimes it’s easy to overlook important things such as measuring before buying, checking return policies, etc. Whether you’re buying large items or decor accents, these are great tips that I’ll keep in mind.

    Reply
  3. Kylie Dotts
    June 19, 2017

    I like your advice to measure the rooms you’ll put the furniture in to make sure that it’ll fit in the space. It has always been what I believe that planning and preparing will help save lots of headaches and this is another one of those situations. Planning how your room will look when you buy home decor online could really help save time and money.

    Reply

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