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Buying Used Furniture vs. New Furniture: Which One is Better for You?

May 11, 2023

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Living room furniture is an essential part of any living space. Whether you’re moving out of an old place or renovating your current home, you can expect furniture to play a major role. After all, where will you sit down to eat your meals? What will you use to relax when watching TV? What will you use to potentially hold your TV?

Buying new furniture depends on your budget and how long you plan to use it. If you’re trying to find a piece that will last a long time, you might expect higher price ranges. This may not be ideal for everyone and is not always possible.

So, what can you do, settle for less expensive furniture that might only have a few good years? While that could be an option, you can always purchase secondhand furniture.

Used furniture in Ottawa might get kicked to the curb at times, but for some people, it could be a diamond in the rough. While we may not sell second-hand furniture at La-Z-Boy Ottawa and& Kingston, there are plenty of second-hand furniture stores out there. 

But which option is better for you? Should you buy new furniture or settle for something used that has quality pieces?

This article will break down the pros and cons of buying used or secondhand furniture, hopefully giving you a better understanding of which option you should choose.

In This Article…

  1. Pros of Buying Used Furniture
  2. Cons of Buying Used Furniture
  3. Pros of Buying New Furniture
  4. Cons of Buying New Furniture
  5. New vs. Used Furniture: Pros and Cons Breakdown


Pros of Buying Used Furniture

Taking a look at used furniture first, purchasing second-hand furniture can come with benefits as well as drawbacks. 

1. Cost of Used Furniture

One of the bigger advantages of buying secondhand furniture is that it can cost significantly less than a brand new product that hasn’t been used yet.

This doesn't necessarily mean the furniture's quality is inferior; it could still be durable and last many years. going to a secondhand furniture shop is a budget-friendly choice, allowing you to allocate your funds to other areas.

For example, maybe you’re spending a lot on renovations in your home, but it’s taking up more of your budget than you want it to. Used living room furniture can help ease off the expenses while still allowing you to get furniture that is on theme and usable.

2. An Eco-Friendly Choice

Getting used furniture from a secondhand furniture shop isn’t just a cost-effective way to buy good quality furniture, but it’s also great for the environment!

Statistics show that over 10 million tons of furniture waste end up in landfills annually all across North America. Although you may not be able to see it or realize it’s there, this contribution is harmful to the environment and can make for some unnecessary air pollution and land disturbance.

By getting used living room furniture, you’re helping the environment and decreasing the amount of furniture that could be incinerated for no good reason!

While buying used furniture is a great way to responsibly remove old furniture, there are other options which you learn about in this article.

3. One-of-a-Kind Furniture Pieces

Used FurnitureSome secondhand furniture pieces are unique in appearance, which you might not be able to find at any old furniture store. If you’re looking for authentically unique furniture pieces for an inexpensive price, getting used furniture might be right for you.

Like new furniture, used furniture can range in many styles and looks. Arguably, used furniture might have a wider range than most furniture stores if we include niche products that only a certain number of people may like.

What’s more, most secondhand pieces are made with solid wood, which can last a very long time even after it’s been chucked away!

Buying second-hand might be beneficial if you’re going for a more specific theme in your house, such as Parisian or Scandinavian.

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Cons of Buying Used Furniture

While there are some upsides to buying used furniture, sometimes, it is not all that it is cracked up to be.

1. Quality Pieces and Durability

While some pieces of furniture are meant to last a long time, some, unfortunately, do not. This is why it is important to note the materials used in creating the furniture piece

When buying furniture secondhand, you don't have the benefit of a salesperson to guide your expectations. Unlike new furniture, used items most likely won’t come with a detailed description of what to expect in terms of quality and condition.

Your judgement becomes much more important and you will have to rely on yourself to indicate whether the furniture will be comfortable or of good quality.

For instance, if you're in the market for a used wooden table or nightstand, you should pay close attention to the quality of the wood, examining all corners, nooks, and crannies for obvious imperfections before making a purchase.

You should also check to see if all working pieces function properly. Don’t be shy to slide the drawers of a nightstand to see if they’re still easy or hard to maneuver. After all, you will be using these drawers for your personal use.



Used Furniture

2. May Come with Maintenance Issues

Sometimes used furniture is old furniture, which means the level of structural integrity might not be the best

Maybe you’re not too picky about how sturdy your table is or how lumpy the sofa feels. These problems can easily be fixed with some repairs.

But how expensive are these repairs, and how severe are these issues? Depending on the problem, some repairs can be as expensive as simply purchasing a brand-new item. 

For example, if you’re thinking about purchasing a used chair and the fabric is torn up, the cost of replacing the upholstery can be expensive, depending on the amount of yardage used. To learn more about the Cost to Reupholster a Chair or compare Repairing vs Replacing Furniture, take a look at these articles.

3. Watch Out for Scams

When finding where to buy used furniture online, especially in a larger area like a capital city, some people might just be looking for money and not actually selling furniture. When buying used furniture in Ottawa, or other large cities, it is important to decipher if a buy-and-sell ad is credible or fake.

Sometimes “sellers,” ask for buyers to send money to them before they’re able to see the furniture in person. The furniture doesn’t appear as it does in the photos, or there isn’t a furniture piece.

To ensure this never happens to you, always make sure you see the furniture item yourself and that it meets your expectations before giving payment. Read product descriptions carefully, and never meet with someone by yourself. It is also important to always have another person with you, so they can also give a second opinion and ensure you get your item safely.


Pros of Buying New Furniture

Moving on to the other side of the coin, new furniture presents its advantages and disadvantages. Which ones stick out more for you?

1. Level of Quality

As mentioned before, the quality of used furniture might not always meet your expectations. For instance, you may need to provide more maintenance and upkeep to keep your furniture looking new.

With new furniture, those worries are eliminated! Depending on the store you shop at, you know exactly what to expect from your new furniture piece. While some stores, like The Brick and Structube, may not be as high quality as La-Z-Boy furniture, you are choosing to shop at these stores because you know what to expect from them. 

What’s more, you also have access to salespeople who can assist you with any questions or concerns you may have. Some furniture stores, like La-Z-Boy Ottawa and Kingston, even offer interior design services to help you coordinate a room together or your entire home.

New Furniture

2. Warranties and Furniture Financing

When shopping for new furniture, you might also have the option to include a warranty plan to protect your furniture, as well as furniture financing options.

Warranties vary depending on the store, but most cover regular wear and tear, manufacturing defects and delivery damages within a specified time after purchase.

Some furniture stores will even offer to break down your payments into smaller increments of cash. This means you can enjoy your furniture without worrying about spending everything all together.

To learn more about La-Z-Boy’s Protection Plan as well as Furniture Financing, take a look at these articles.

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3. Wider Selection of Furniture

When shopping for used furniture, you might find a unique piece. However, it might’ve already been bought by someone else, or the ad got taken down due to unforeseen circumstances, never to be seen again. 

While this can be an unfortunate moment for shoppers, buying brand new doesn’t have as much of that worry. Since items are ordered constantly, furniture stores offer items in their showrooms for not just one buyer but multiple.

Yes, there might be that worry of a certain item eventually selling out, but at least it isn’t one-of-a-kind.

Further, because some furniture stores offer customizable furniture, you can personalize your desired piece however you see fit.

There are also living room furniture sets to choose from, which means you can match your furniture much easier than trying to match secondhand furniture that was potentially once from other sets.

To learn more about the Pros and Cons of a 3-Piece Living Room Set, take a look at this article.

New Furniture


Cons of Buying New Furniture

Just like used furniture, there are some disadvantages to buying new furniture, as explained below.

1. More Expensive

Even though new furniture has no quality issues, it has a higher price tag than getting furniture secondhand.

In-store furniture prices break prices down by the number of materials used and the quality. So, the higher the quality, the higher the price will be. Store prices also consider the amount of labour used to manufacture the furniture.

What’s more, if it’s a best-selling item, chances are it’s in high demand, which means a higher price tag.

This, along with the option to opt into a warranty plan, can bring your furniture price significantly higher than simply purchasing a secondhand furniture item.

2. Wait Times

Going off of the previous section, newer furniture items can also take longer to arrive on your doorstep.

While best-selling furniture items are higher priced, they could also take longer to arrive if the stores are out of stock. It might even take longer if your furniture is custom ordered, which sometimes can take twice as long than normal furniture

This also doesn’t consider potential delivery delays, which can be inevitable if unforeseen circumstances occur… like a global pandemic. Furniture delays can also occur if you’re getting multiple items, like a living room furniture set.

Although you might wait for your used item to arrive, there is the benefit of speaking to the supplier directly to arrange delivery times and if there are problems or concerns.

3. Less Range in Style

As mentioned before, used pieces might have a stylistic edge when it comes to the range of styles found in furniture stores.

While some furniture stores have specific furniture styles to choose from, some do not. This might make customers feel as though there isn’t a personal touch to their furniture and can come off as generic.

Some secondhand furniture pieces have a certain look or character to them that a mass-produced furniture item may not have. Because furniture items are supposed to relate to a large audience, these pieces may not add the same charm and taste as a unique furniture item.

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New vs. Used Furniture: Pros and Cons Breakdown

Now that you have read all of the important pros and cons, here is a full breakdown of each one at a glance, so you can easily compare which option is right for you.

Buying Used Furniture

Buying New Furniture


  • Less Expensive

  • Reduces Furniture Waste

  • Ability to Find One-of-a-Kind Pieces


  • Quality Might Not be the Best

  • Repair and Damages Can Be Costly

  • Ads Might Not Be Legit


  • Good Quality

  • Includes Warranty & Furniture Financing

  • Wide Furniture Selection


  • More Expensive

  • Delivery Times Can be Long

  • Furniture Looks Generic

What's Next?

And there you have it! If you carefully take a look at these helpful factors, you will be able to make an informed decision for yourself and your household. Always remember to compare prices and check the level of quality of your furniture. These are the important considerations when purchasing any furniture piece, new or used.

If you’re wondering where to buy used furniture in Ottawa, there are many places that you can find in this article.

If you’re thinking of shopping for new living room furniture, why not stop by La-Z-Boy? You can start shopping at any of our local furniture stores in Ottawa and Kingston. You can also book an appointment online before coming in.

If you’re interested in learning more about our La-Z-Boy sofas, check out some of these articles:

We also offer complimentary interior design services to help create the room of your dreams. Our interior designers, along with our expert design consultants, are always eager to lend a helping hand.

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Related Articles:

Leather vs. Fabric: Which Sofa Cover is Right For You?

How to Make Your Old Furniture Looking New

Cost to Reupholster a La-Z-Boy Recliner

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