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Furniture/Items that should be bought new


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Hello everyone,

This is my first actual move, so I am curious as to what items are fine to buy used, and what items should be bought new. 

I do plan on buying a brand new bed, new couch, and new pots and pans (cooking appliances). However, I feel as if buying chairs, dining room tables, kitchen appliances like a microwave, coffee tables, nightstands, vacuums, tvs, tv stands, dressers, etc. (Basically everything else) are fine being bought 2nd hand/used. 

Anyone have any tips or thoughts on things that should not be bought used? I plan only to ship clothing and books, so I am going to buy all my furniture in the new place I move into. 

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It all depends on your own comfort level. I would almost definitely say all bedding should be new: mattress, pillows, sheets, etc. The only exception is if you know the person you are buying them from very well and you trust their hygiene and bedbugs status. As a fun aside, if you are bringing a used mattress into Canada, it must either have been in your possession from the original purchase or you must present a certificate that you have had the mattress fumigated for bedbugs in order to import it into Canada.

For things like a couch, I personally would not buy a used couch. The "ick" factor is too high for me there. I don't mind communal couches in study lounges, offices etc. but in the comfort of my own home, I'd like to have a new clean couch.

For me, almost everything else is okay used. I think pots and pans are okay to buy used if they are still in good quality. A dishwasher or a good hand washing takes care of most things. These items are made to be cleaned throughly!

Small appliances are also generally okay. My only word of caution is with microwaves. Microwaves are relatively cheap (you can get them as cheap as $30) and a lot of people don't take good care of their microwave and allow a ton of gross crust to build up on the walls. So, although I would be fine with a clean used microwave or if I was able to clean a used microwave, since they are much cheaper than other appliances, it's worth the cost to just buy a new one lol. Oh I think I would probably buy a new coffee maker too since it's hard to clean (you can't really see if the previous owner cleaned it well). Wasn't on my list at first since we didn't own one before.

Buying furniture from departing grad students is a great idea. We were happy to sell a ton of our old stuff to new students. We generally sold them for 1/3 of the purchase price (most items have had 3-5 years of use). I think one of the best used furniture items to get is a dining table set. They can be quite pricey ($200 ish for a basic one) because chairs are weirdly expensive for some reason. However, they are also a huge pain in the butt to move (we've sold our table every time we moved). People were happy to buy a decent dining set for $50 and we were happy to get that $50 and avoid the hassle of moving it :) 

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I'd second much of what was mentioned above. I buy a lot of stuff secondhand, but I do tend to avoid used mattresses and used furniture that's upholstered, just because it seems like such a pain to make sure it's cleaned thoroughly and free of bugs. But I personally would be fine with buying a lot of other stuff used: tables, desks, cabinets, etc. I'm also moving for school in the fall, and am planning to pick up some stuff at thrift shops, antique stores, etc. once I arrive. Craigslist and freecycling sites might be good options, as well as any sort of online community for students of your university where people post things they need/things they need to get rid of.

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The only furniture we've bought new has been mattresses. Chairs, couches, etc. have all been second hand from craigslist or consignment shops. 

Check and make sure it's in decent shape, and clean it thoroughly. Our couch currently is a 4 piece white leather sectional that we've had for 6 years... Paid $200 for it used. 

I've bought speciality kitchen items new, but I have no issue buying them used either. We usually troll local garage sales and pick up a surprisingly large amount of what we need. 

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