The Furniture You Should Buy First when You’re on a Tight Budget

Get the bare essentials when you’re working with a tight budget.

Don’t dive into the deep end when you’re still wearing floaties. Furnishing your apartment or home is mega expensive, so ease into it by buying the absolute most important items. You can add your killer accent pieces later after living with the bare bones.

Take it from me. Buying all of your furniture for your first apartment at the same time and then checking your credit card statement almost makes your heart stop beating. I honestly do not regret buying all of my furniture at the same time because I desperately needed to see my vision come to life. But let’s be real. You don’t want to put yourself through that stress. Instead, get your most important pieces first and little by little add on. 

Note: decorations are not in the title because you should forgo any decorations that aren’t free before you finish furnishing your space with the essentials. And remember, from the very beginning of your design process, you should be on the look out for anything free that will complement your space. But you’re always going to have to buy some things, so stick with these purchases first:


Buy Now

  • Mattress, Bed Frame, Bed Sheets, Duvet, Pillows

  • Dresser

  • Kitchen Table and Chairs

  • Sofa and Coffee Table

  • Shower Curtain and Mat


Here’s the thing. These items might seem obvious, but many people will go to Target and somehow walk away with a $30 lamp. Don’t do it. You do not need a lamp when your place comes with an overhead light. Catch yourself when you’re ready to buy that throw pillow for $25. You need that money for the sturdiest furniture. Look at it this way. You need the best equipment for sleeping, eating, and entertaining, and you don’t wont to waste your cash on a candle that you’ll hardly ever light. But when you start getting $$$ start thinking about getting pieces like these:


Buy Later

  • Rugs 

  • Light Fixtures

  • End/Side Tables and Nightstands

  • TV and TV Stand (I know some of you will hate me for saying this)

  • Mirror (suck it up and use your bathroom mirror)

  • Throw Pillows

  • Balcony/Patio Table and Chairs

  • Desks and Office Chairs (use your sofa and coffee table)

  • Bookcases

  • Benches

  • Extra Seating

  • Art

  • Candles

  • Plants (look outside at the trees)

  • Clocks (check your phone or watch)

  • Accent and Miscellaneous Decorations


Slowly and slowly you will see your design come to life. Pat yourself on the back. You made your vision into a reality and were fiscally responsible at the same time. 


What is the furniture or decoration you would completely ignore this advice for? For me it’s the rug. I love a good rug.  

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