So you’re getting ready to move into a new home and you’re trying to decide whether you should bring along your existing furniture or buy new items. Chances are it will be a combination of both. I just moved late last year, and that was indeed the case (and we continue to furnish!)
But first, there are some considerations you should make before transporting the old furniture to the new home, and buying new items.
Measure the rooms
It goes without saying that you should measure the dimensions of each room in your new home. This includes the lengths and heights of each wall, but also where doorway openings and windows are located, and how the room is laid out. Remember, while a new room might be larger on paper in overall square footage, that doesn’t necessarily mean your existing furniture will fit perfectly. You might find a window right where you had envisioned placing your tall dresser, for instance.
Envision the layout
Picture where you want to place each piece of furniture in the room and measure the sides, making sure to leave space for opening doors (don’t forget the closet door if it isn’t a sliding design!) leaving enough clearance to walk around a bed, for example, or a coffee or kitchen table. Measure your furniture, or jot down the measurements of new pieces you’re interested in getting, to ensure they will fit nicely.
My existing entertainment unit, for example, fit perfectly against the living room wall where we wanted to place it in our new home. But there was barely an inch to spare before it would have blocked an entryway into the room. Had it been an inch or two longer, we might have needed to buy a new unit, or re-think our idea of the room layout. And when you’re moving large furniture into a new room, you’ll want to make sure it ends up in the right place from the get go.
Know where you want things to go
Which brings me to the next point – know exactly where you want things to go before bringing the items in. Take another example from my recent move: an AV unit we had in our old bedroom didn’t quite fit in our new master or it would have blocked the door. That meant wall mounting the TV instead, and using the stand we had in the basement. Had we not realized this ahead of time, the movers would have lugged the stand upstairs, leaving us to later take it to its final home in the basement. And the last thing movers want, whether it’s a third-party company or just family and friends, is to have to lift heavy furniture from room-to-room – particularly from floor to floor – if it can be avoided. So don’t only measure, but measure in advance and figure out where everything is going to go.
With a new dining room, we needed to buy a new dining room set. My husband found one he thought was perfect, but I felt that while it would indeed fit, it would overpower the room. How did we make the final decision? Easy. We measured out the dimensions on the floor, and lay out painter’s tape where the table would sit. Then, we placed our existing chairs around it to get an idea of how it would look. In the end, we decided it was too big and opted for another set. Before deciding which buffet of two sizes we’d get to finish off the room (complete with a cool record player on top!), we did the same painter’s tape setup to visualize how each would look.
Buy new items all at once
OK, so while furnishing an entire new home isn’t exactly an affordable venture, it’s worth your while to get everything ordered and delivered at once – or at least everything for a full room. That’s not just for the sake of saving on delivery charges, but for convenience as well.
Label the gear you’re transporting
Label big pieces of furniture (masking tape will do – just be careful not to damage items), and even place tape on the walls to correspond with each piece so you know exactly where everything goes. During my move, the movers kept looking for me to tell them where a piece of furniture would go. Had we labeled each piece of furniture with its proper location (not just the room but the floor), and labeled each door correspondingly, this might have made things run a bit more smoothly. And quickly. As they say, time is money.
Some cool new items to consider
As noted at the beginning, chances are you’ll be getting a few new pieces of furniture to go along with the new digs. I’ve been in my new place for four months, and there’s still plenty of furniture we need to get. Often times, especially when moving from a smaller to a larger house, or a condo to a home (as I did), you’ll even have entire new rooms to fill.
One of the rooms we’re looking at creating is a theatre in the basement, and that means getting an awesome flat-screen TV (4K and at least 70”, of course), speakers, and some funky seating.
This Palmdale Power Recliner is perfect for a room like that, or in a living room or den. You can lounge back on the triple pillow design at the push of a button, or sit forward. And it’s easily spot-cleaned with mild soap and water.
We also have a guest bedroom that’s been vacant (literally) as we seek out a perfect bedroom set. The 8-piece Davis Bedroom Collection makes for a great all-in buy to completely furnish an entire room. It comes with queen bed rails, headboard, and footboard; rectangular mirror; 8-drawer dresser, 3-drawer nightstand, and 5-drawer chest. Add some decor items, and voila, your new room is complete! I’m partial for the cherry finish, but there are other colour options, too, including black and white.
If you’re moving to make room for a new addition to the family, you can also get a fully-furnished baby room set, like the Stork Craft Turin 3-piece nursery set, again, in cherry finish. It includes a 2-in-1 convertible crib, changing table, and three-drawer dresser. The crib can convert into a full-sized bed once your child gets older.
As someone who works from home, one of the new items on my list for purchase was a desk to outfit my home office in the basement. Once I knew where I wanted it to go, finding the right one was all about the dimensions – and, of course, the look.
My space consists of a corner, where a model like this Bestar Hampton L-shaped corner workstation would fit nicely. It has storage drawers, a keyboard shelf, and plenty of space for a printer and other office essentials. If you’ve got a large room to dedicate to a home office, you might want to opt for a full setup, like this 5-piece flexible office room set from South Shore. It comes with a writing desk, plus a 2-door, 1-drawer armoire, 3- and 5-shelf bookcases, and a 3-drawer chest, all in black.