Achieving domestic bliss can be an expensive business.
Whether you’re upgrading a piece of furniture, seeking out the right accessories or replacing essential items, it can be costly.
However, there are plenty of ways to reduce the cost of creating your ideal home.
We know because every month we survey thousands of Which? members to see how they save money on everyday bills, services or purchases. You can see the full range of our members’ money-saving tips by trialling Which? Money for two months for £1.
During August and September last year, we asked 881 members about the savings they’d made when buying white goods, furnishings and domestic appliances. Here’s a selection of their best ideas.
Consider online outlets and auctions sites
Some retailers sell off older or discounted stock via eBay or Amazon, so it’s worth having a look if you don’t fancy paying showroom prices.
Scott Bachelor, 35, from Helensburgh, saved an impressive £700 doing this. After seeing a Willis and Gambier sideboard and table in a shop and deciding they were too expensive, he was pleased to discover the same set via the company’s eBay outlet store.
Some members told us they’d made savings on smaller items, such as light bulbs or replacement glass for their cafetieres, while others have managed to make impressive savings on furniture too.
Find out more: refurbished products – this guide includes links to the best outlet and clearance websites
Collect free goods locally
Recycling websites, such as Freegle and Freecycle, are a popular source for finding some great freebies for your home. Local community forums can also be worth browsing.
Plenty of members told us they’d taken advantage of these sites. Helen O’Hara, 50, from Bedford, kitted her son out for university, after connecting online with a local woman who was moving out and wanted to clear her collection of kitchen equipment.
Don’t be afraid to ask for a better deal
We heard from plenty of members who haggled their way to a cheaper product. Being armed with prices from competitors, including those online, tends to work well.
Judy Chinnock, 66, from Vale of Glamorgan, managed to negotiate 10% off the price of her fridge and get free delivery. She reminded Currys that she was a loyal customer who had previously experienced issues with an item.
David Grant, 50, from Cheshire, asked for a discount at Notcutts Garden Centre in Stockport because he was buying several items. He knocked £100 off his bill, which was already reduced as the items were on sale.
Find out more: haggling in shops – tips from an ex-salesman
Check out charity shops and second hand dealers
For quality furniture at low prices, charity shops and second-hand dealers are a good place to start.
Mike Kelleher, 68, saved £70 when he snapped up a solid pine cabinet from the Dorothy House Hospice in Bath. Another member saved £1,500 on two leather sofas, which were virtually brand new, at a shop near Blackpool called Pre-loved Sofas and Chairs.