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How I Saved $450 On A Piece of Furniture

By Erik Folgate

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Background Info

My wife and I went looking for entertainment centers on Sunday afternoon. We stopped by one of our favorite places to find really cheap, decent furnture: the Rooms-To-Go outlet. We bought our bedroom set brand new at the outlet two years ago for $1,200, which included a king head/foot board, dresser, and two night stands! So, we scoured the outlet, but nothing fully caught our eye. We saw one TV stand that we liked, but we wanted a two-piece set. We went to the showcase room down the street and saw two sets that we really liked. The first set was smaller, but had a different style to it. We saw that one at the outlet, but it wasn’t in great condition, and it wasn’t much of a discount either. The second set was big, had a nice top hutch piece with shelving and crown molding, and we liked that it would fill up most of the space that we would be putting it in.

The Dilemma

The more we looked at the piece, the more we wanted it. The price tag was $899, and with shipping and taxes, it would be over $1,000! This was really tough to swallow, so we did what we usually do, we slept on it. Walking away from a large purchase to think about it overnight is a great way to prevent yourself from making a hasty decision.

The Turning Point

The next day, we headed back towards the “furniture” row on State Road 436, and we were about ready to pull the trigger on the $900 piece, because we really wanted it, it wouldn’t break our bank, and we plan on spending a lot of time in our current house. My wife says to me, “Let’s just go check the outlet store one more time”. I shook my head and said, “I really don’t remember seeing that entertainment center there, but we can try”. She said it would make her feel better if we looked one more time. So sure enough, we went back and found the same model in really good condition! The reason we overlooked it a day before is because the top piece was not paired up with the bottom piece, so it looked completely different. The bottom piece was the original piece that we liked, but passed up because we wanted something with a matching top piece. We asked the guy “how much”, and he said $475. We asked for a discount, because there was one area in the corner that looked a little damaged, but it was nothing we couldn’t touch up with a stain marker. He comes back and says, $450, and we said, “Sold!”. Not only did we get the same entertainment center for half off, but we asked for a discount and basically got the tax removed.

Lessons We Learned

  • Furniture looks much different in the showroom than the outlet warehouse. We didn’t notice the piece in the outlet room, because it was misplaced and dingy looking. Make sure you come to an outlet store with a different mindset.
  • Sleep on it. If we had pulled the trigger on the $900 set on Sunday, we would have never come back the next day to check the outlet store and find the one for $450.
  • Always ask for a discount. Even though it was just $25, it was the equivalent of getting a tax free piece of furniture.

Got any stories similar to this? Have you saved a bundle on a large purchase lately? We want to hear.

Erik Folgate
Erik and his wife, Lindzee, live in Orlando, Florida with a baby boy on the way. Erik works as an account manager for a marketing company, and considers counseling friends, family and the readers of Money Crashers his personal ministry to others. Erik became passionate about personal finance and helping others make wise financial decisions after racking up over $20k in credit card and student loan debt within the first two years of college.

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  • http://www.timncox.com Tim Cox

    This looks Delicious! Way to decorate. You should have some of your commenters over for apps.

  • http://madsaver.com Mac

    That was an awesome deal you guys scored. In my experience, buying furniture has felt a lot like buying a car. Not so much fun and the sales people are more pushy than I’d like. Next time I’m in the market I’ll have to check out the outlet stores instead.

  • Kira Botkin

    Isn’t it funny how saving $25 on a $450 purchase seems like very little, but saving $25 on a $30 restaurant bill is OMG HUGE DISCOUNT. Asking for a discount at those kinds of stores is essentially expected – I always figure, what’s the worst they can do? Sell it to me full price anyway?

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