I've Scored Some Major Furniture Deals on Craigslist—Here's How You Can Too (2024)

With just six suitcases, 26 boxes, and a head full of dreams, my little family of threerelocated to AmericafromAustraliaa few years ago. We sold all our major furniture and décor items Down Under before the big move; it was time to start again with a clean slate in our new L.A. home. The Silver Lake apartmentwe scored was newly renovated with fresh white walls, polished concrete floors, and granite countertops in thekitchen; we couldn’t wait to get started.

After a quick trip toIKEAfor the usual kitchen necessities, we started looking for the right pieces to decorate our space. We didn’t even need to get in the car; we just turned on the computer and searched on what has become our favorite affordable store:Craigslist. Now we’re hooked. The best part is the thrill of the hunt; you never know what you’re going to stumble upon, and it’s not all secondhand either. We found a brand-newTuft & Needleking-size mattress for $350 (it retails for $750) from someone who accidentally bought two, a stunning square granite coffee table, and a set of retroBoseBeovox RL6000 speakers from the ’90s.

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When you find that amazing one-off or new piece you love, the waiting game from the time you email until you hear back from the buyer can be excruciating—and thrilling. Those who know this feeling may be nodding and smiling in agreement, but for those who don’t, here is a little Craigslist counsel to get you started.

Know Your Furniture Categories

Do you know your chaise lounge from your club chairor your midcentury modern from your industrial? If not, do a little research and get familiar with the numerous furniture styles and designs out there, then figure out which ones you really loveand that suit your space—includingpopular midcentury modern furniture brands. With thousands of items for sale on the e-emporium, these descriptions will be vital keywords for filtering your search. Type in “black leather couch,” and you’ll see what I mean.You could spend hours scrolling through unrelated pieces, and who has time like that to spare?

Learn How to Refine Your Search

So you’ve compiled your furniture categories and eras but still can't find the piece you're looking for? Well, then it's time to get down to business—with the advanced search. Enter specific information about the item you’re tracking in quotation marks—for example, black couch “vintage” “midcentury” “modern”—and it will filter the final results. If you’re still seeing too many results or unrelated items, try excluding terms by adding a negative sign in front of the word. The search for "midcentury sofa-red" will look for listings that have “midcentury” and “sofa” but not “red.”If you want to find posts that have “midcentury” and “Milo Baughman,” then use the “OR” searches that look like this: midcentury | Milo Baughman.

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If your query is complicated, you can group terms with parentheses, such as black (Milo Baughman | Eames) -2000. The results will show “black” and either “Milo Baughman” or “Eames” (or both) but will exclude the year 2000. You can learn other tricks onCraigslist Help. And one more thing: Don’t forget to click on the “show images” option in the top right-hand corner for a thumbnail preview of the images within the post.

Be on the Hunt For Incorrect Listings

So you know the design, era, and color of your dream décor and have learned how to refine your search to sort the good from the bad—now we’re asking you to ditch it all. Well, not entirely, but there is gold to be found when you look outside the common terms and search for postings that haven’t been categorized properly. Sometimes people don’t know what they have, so they won’t list it under a designer name, or they often misspell the era; other times their photographs are dark or low-res, so most people scroll right over them.Unfortunately, this type of search does take time, but if you chance upon that amazing designer piece for a steal, it will all be worth it.

Harness the Art of Bartering

The art ofbartering—exchanging goods or services for other goods or services without using money—is sadly lost on the next generation. Well, it’s time to rekindle this amazing skill. Craigslist has an entirebarter sectionwhere people are willing to trade their items. Sometimes you can find an amazing piece of furniture, décor, or an accessory that someone listed for trade because the style just isn’t suited to their space anymore. This is an awesome option for those who have a tight budget but great taste.You can swap one beautiful piece for another. It’s a win-win!

Don't Be Shy

I’ll admit that when I first started buying on Craigslist, I was a little nervous. I loved the browsing, hunting, and shopping, but the final pickup almost put me off. I wasn’t keen on visiting the house of someone I don’t know; it’s definitely a big consideration. You should always be prepared and a little cautious whenever you visit a stranger’s home (and bring a friend, if it makes you feel better). But don’t be a shrinking violet either. Sometimes you can meet some pretty awesome characters, and we’ve even scored some great extra pieces at the pickup point.When my husband collected our vintage Bose speakers, he noticed a great receiver that matched them perfectly, so the seller threw it in for a few extra dollars.

Don't Forget to Follow These 4 Steps When Selling Your Furniture

I've Scored Some Major Furniture Deals on Craigslist—Here's How You Can Too (2024)


Is it OK to haggle on Craigslist? ›

Haggle, yes it's okay. Low balling is a waste of time. You are asking for a middle finger, or no response unless they say best offer. How do you post an ad to sell something on Craigslist indicating you'll take significantly less than you've the price you've offered without giving away that you're desperate?

What sells fastest on Craigslist? ›

12 Items That Currently Sell the Most Money On Craigslist
  • Home Appliances. Gently used or well-maintained appliances like refrigerators, washing machines, and dryers are always in demand. ...
  • Furniture. ...
  • Electronics. ...
  • Cars and Motorcycles. ...
  • Power Tools. ...
  • Sporting Goods. ...
  • Garden Equipment. ...
  • Tech Accessories.
Jan 24, 2024

What should I not do when selling on Craigslist? ›

Avoid adding any personal information in the posting, including your name, real phone number or real email address. Always use the generated email address on your Craigslist posts. This creates a random email address, so the poster doesn't have your real email on file.

How to write a Craigslist ad for furniture? ›

How to write the listing description:
  1. Begin with a bulleted list of features that's easy to skim, followed by a full description of the item directly below it.
  2. Include a fair price. ...
  3. List the item's dimensions. ...
  4. Use keywords again. ...
  5. Include your reason for selling the item.

Are Craigslist deals too good to be true? ›

Warning signs in listings and communications. Too-good-to-be-true prices: If a listing offers an item at a price significantly lower than its market value, proceed with caution. Scammers often use unbelievably low prices as bait.

How to politely ask for a lower price? ›

In this post:
  1. All I have in my budget is X.
  2. What would your cash price be?
  3. How far can you come down in price to meet me?
  4. What? or Wow.
  5. Is that the best you can do?
  6. Ill give you X if we can close the deal now.
  7. Ill agree to this price if you.
  8. Your competitor offers.
Jun 15, 2022

What should I be careful of on Craigslist? ›

There are some common Craigslist scams that you can spot quickly and avoid once you are familiar with how they work.
  • Middleman scam. It's a common scam in the rental industry. ...
  • Escrow fraud. ...
  • Job scams. ...
  • Email recovery scams. ...
  • Buyer scams. ...
  • Seller scams.
Jan 10, 2024

Should I give my phone number on Craigslist? ›

Craigslist email relay hides your email address when communicating with buyers or sellers. It's a great security feature that you should take advantage of. That means you shouldn't give your real email address or phone number to someone you're dealing with, especially if they're pressuring you.

Why aren't my things selling on Craigslist? ›

Your stuff doesn't have enough buyer demand. Sometimes, even if you have a competitive price point and display/describe your items nicely, they just don't sell. In these situations, it's almost always because there isn't enough buyer demand.

What to say when selling furniture? ›

Create an Accurate Description. The furniture you're selling is used, so no need to pretend it's in perfect condition. Be honest and provide up-close photos of any details the buyer should know about, such as small flaws, scratches or tears.

How do I pay for expensive items on Craigslist? ›

Cash or Check

Paying in person with cash or a personal check are the only forms of payment that are recommended by Craigslist. Understand that Craigslist does not guarantee transactions or have any power to correct a transaction gone wrong.

How do you write a description for selling furniture? ›

Sizzling Product Descriptions
  1. Clearly define and target your prospective customer.
  2. Describe how your furniture will improve your customer's life.
  3. Use plain English, short simple sentences and a conversational tone.
  4. Answer the questions in the customer's mind.
  5. Write enticing headlines and subheads.

Is it unethical to haggle? ›

To haggle ethically is to achieve a win-win, which means the best price for you should also be the best price for the seller. It's not a zero-sum game where you gain and the seller loses, nor the other way around. Therefore, you should work with the seller to get a price that you are both happy with.

Is it OK to offer below asking price? ›

Depending on your financial goals, it may make better sense for you to offer below the asking price, especially if the house has been on the market for too long or you really want the house, but can only afford it at a certain price.

Is it rude to haggle over the price of an item? ›

Haggling is socially acceptable in specific situations such as purchasing a car, real estate, and flea markets. It is not socially acceptable in commercialized businesses, such as retailers, restaurants, and supermarkets.

Is it rude to ask for a lower price? ›

There's no shame in asking for a discount before spending your hard-earned money on everything from furniture and clothes to recurring household bills. Nearly everything is open to negotiation as long as you do your research, come to the table well-informed, and know the right way to ask.


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