We recently had a move. Not far–just up the street–but every new space requires some new stuff. I decided to keep our purchases really to a minimum because we’re on a tight budget. We did find curtains for a reasonable price at IKEA and even some very dark black-out curtains from Fabric Land that were on sale. My mom bought us a kettle and a garbage pail and I also bought a new toilet brush and some hangers. But not much else.
Of course we also needed a few other things, but I lucked out: biking around one night before garbage day, I found at the curb three like-new wool circle rugs from IKEA, a small Shark vaccuum, a large Gorm shelf from IKEA for our storage closet, and a small bookshelf–all things that had been on my list to buy!
Now that was really lucky, but another treasure trove has been Kijiji. If you don’t have Kijiji in your area, it is similar to Craigslist, basically online ads for people buying and selling stuff. Now, I wanted to get a dehydrator, but I didn’t want to pay more than $20 for a used one. I waited, and I waited, and this past weekend saw an ad go up for a lot of stuff, including a dehydrator. Would he sell it separately? You betcha. And along with the dehydrator, I picked up an ice cream maker for $5, and for free, a large-ish Lagostina pot, three Bunnykins bowls and a Peter Rabbit mug, as well as two small bowls, one of which was Royal Doulton. Really nice and useful stuff.
So, my advice for outfitting your home on the cheap (or free) is this:
– make a list and wait.
– Bike or drive or walk around your neighbourhood the night before garbage pick-up and look.
– Periodically check the online want ads, and if you can find a sale for a lot of stuff together, check it out because that person’s motivation is clearing out space, not making a big profit.
Of course there are many other ways to score free or cheap stuff, but this is what worked for me with my recent move. If you have had great luck with another method, please share it below.