Will My House Look Cheap If I Buy Things Off Craigslist?! ( +5 Tips For Buying & Selling!)

Buy Furniture Off Craigslist

If you’ve never bought or sold on Craigslist, this is probably what you’re thinking. Especially if you have only ever bought brand-new furniture, home decor, and appliances. Plus, the Craigslist website is not pretty or flashy. It doesn’t look like a place where you go to buy nice quality items. But the truth is, most of the furniture in my house is from Craigslist and I don’t think people realize it!

I’ve found that you can find awesome deals on high-quality items. The furniture I’ve bought on Craigslist has been sturdier and lasted longer. Why? A lot of the items that end up on Craigslist were expensive when they were purchased the first time. (Bedroom sets that sold for thousands of dollars new and solid wood pieces.) The owners are trying to sell the items to recoup a tiny bit of the original cost. Becuase let’s be honest, Walmart furniture doesn’t last long enough to resell!

Why buy something new and cheap when you can buy a high-quality piece of furniture used? To support my very scientific conclusion that no, Craigslist items will not make your home look cheap or less than, I have pulled together a list of items that I have bought and sold, so you can come to a conclusion yourself. What do you think? Does my house look cheap?

What We’ve Bought On Craigslist

Solid Oak Dining Room Table Set With 6 Chairs – $300

Solid wood dining room tables are expensive. We’re talking about $2,000 or more for a nice set with matching chairs. When we bought our last house,  I wanted a large table that would seat 8 or more people. I also wanted real wood so I knew it would last. After searching Craiglist, I found the perfect table for $300. I fell in love with the black and oak combo and the solid farmhouse table legs.

Buy Furniture Off Craigslist

Best of all, it fit right in with our brand new kitchen.

Buy Furniture Off Craigslist

Our Headboards

All 3 headboards in my house came from Craigslist! I have a hard time paying hundreds of dollars for a headboard that is more or less a decorative piece. While I do believe that headboards are important for setting up the look and feel of a room, I don’t think that you should write off Craigslist because you are looking for a certain style.

Master Bedroom King Headboard – $50

Buy Furniture Off Craigslist

Bedroom Set (headboard, 2 night stands, dresser with mirror) – $200

Buy Furniture Off Craigslist

And the dresser…

Buy Furniture Off Craigslist

White Decorative Headboard – $35

Buy Furniture Off Craigslist

Fridge ($260) 

You can read the whole post on how I saved $2000 on my kitchen renovation by buying used.

Buy Furniture Off Craigslist

Dishwasher ($100)

The stainless steel dishwasher matched the kitchen perfectly.

Other things that I’ve bought from Craigslist:

  • A pop-up camper (and we also sold it on Craigslist!)
  • Bookshelves
  • A dollhouse for my daughter
  • End tables

What We’ve Sold On Craigslist

Brown Leather Couch Set – $300 for set of 2

Buy Furniture Off Craigslist

Patio Set (two swivel chairs and a table) – $100

Buy Furniture Off Craigslist

High-top Dining Room Table – $200

This piece worked great in our first home with vaulted ceilings, but it wouldn’t fit in our fixer upper. So we sold it before we moved for a fair price.

Buy Furniture Off Craigslist

Other items I’ve sold:

    • Original fridge, dishwasher, and stove from the kitchen renovation
    • Decorative entryway table and mirror
    • Glass end table
    • Old riding lawnmower that wouldn’t start (don’t worry, we listed the item as broken!)
    • Bike trailer for kids
    • Double stroller
    • And so much more!

If I think I can get $20 or more for an item, I’ll sell it on Craigslist. Here are a few pointers for buying and selling high-quality items on the site.

Tips For Buying And Selling On Craigslist

1.The list price is not the actual price. When you list something on Craigslist, leave some wiggle room for negotiation. Similarly, when you buy something from Craigslist, feel free to offer a lower price. I always have two prices in my mind when I list: the written price and the price that I want to get from an item. And it’s never the same number! For example, I listed the high-top dining room table at $250 and settled at $200, which was the price I wanted from the beginning.

2. If you offer to pick up an item that day for cash, most sellers will negotiate even lower. The allure of immediate satisfaction (in cash!) will prompt a seller to shave off money from the price. That is the technique I used when I bought the stainless steel fridge for the new house. Also, a good rule of thumb is to only do transactions in person with cash to avoid scams.

3. Ask questions about the item before driving to pick it up.  Not only is it best to find out exactly what you’re buying, but texting back and forth with a buyer is a good way to make sure the item (and seller!) is legitimate. If I’m still unsure, I will even call the seller on the phone and talk to them to make sure it’s going to be a good sale.

4. Google search the address. Craigslist gets a bad wrap in the media, but with common sense and a little detective work, you can keep yourself safe. Make sure it’s in a residential area. You can even google earth the house or street to make sure it looks like a safe location to go and pick up a piece of furniture or appliance. I will say, in all my dealings, I have always bought items from very nice families that are just interested in selling items they don’t need anymore for a few bucks.  

5. Don’t ever buy or sell from someone who isn’t local.  Most Craigslist scams start with someone who says, “I love your item, but I live in (another city.) Can I send you a check for shipping?” The answer should always be no. I receive these texts occasionally, but I tell people I only deal in person and for cash. If something seems odd or too good to be true (a brand new fridge for $1), it probably isn’t the real deal.

I hope that I’ve crushed any misconceptions about buying furniture or appliances off Craigslist so you can start saving money. Have you ever bought or sold on Craigslist? How was your experience?

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