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sofa buying guide

Sofa Buying Guide: Should You Skimp or Splurge on a New Sofa?

So, you’re on the hunt to buy a new sofa. Congratulations! Depending on how far you’ve gotten in your search for your couch, you might have discovered that shopping for furniture isn’t always simple. In fact, finding the right sofa or couch for your living room design is a little bit like dating. It can be a lot of work to find the one, but once you do, you get to enjoy a lifetime (or at least a few years) of happiness together.

The “perfect sofa” might look different for everyone, but we can probably all agree that it should be comfortable, fit in your living room, reflect your style, and hopefully last a few years (if not more). Not to mention it should be a price that doesn’t break the bank.

All that to say, enjoying your perfect sofa is the easy part. Finding it takes work.

sofa buying guide

While you probably have a good sense of what you’re looking for in a sofa, you might need a little help uncovering how much money you should spend on one.

Sofas can be expensive, there’s no denying that. For some people it might make sense to invest in a quality piece that will last years. For others, buying something that works for right now is a better option. But where do you fall on the spectrum?

Because we’d rather you spend your time focusing on your real dating life (or with your family, taking up a new hobby, or doing any other activity that brings you joy), we created a sofa buying guide to help you easily understand how much to spend on a new sofa.

5 Questions to Ask Before You Buy a New Sofa

sofa buying guide

Question 1: How much do you want to spend on a sofa?

It can be hard to wrap your head around how much you should spend on a sofa, especially if you’re not even sure what the average cost of a sofa is. A good place to start is getting familiar with some average price ranges for couches and sofas.

Average Cost of Sofas:

  • $1000 or less: The sub-thousand dollar range is what we’d consider an inexpensive sofa.
  • $1000 – $2000: A mid-range priced sofa generally falls in between one to two thousand dollars.
  • $2000 or more: We’d consider anything above two grand to be an expensive sofa.

The Bottom Line: Survey the sofa landscape to help you get a sense of how much you might want to spend.

 

Question 2: How Nomadic are You?

Sofas are large, bulky, and not the easiest pieces of furniture to move. One that works perfectly in your current home, might not fit through the doorway at your next.

Your solve:

  • I move a lot or will be moving soon: If you plan to only live where you are for under a year, consider skimping on an inexpensive sofa that you won’t have to worry about lugging to a new location.
  • I’m relatively settled: Around five years? Maybe a slightly higher-quality option is the best fit for you. You want something that will last you that half-decade or so, but won’t be missed if you can’t bring it with you.
  • I’m in it for the long haul: Finally, if you are relatively settled in your current home, it makes more sense to invest in a high-quality sofa that will last.

The Bottom Line: Your overall timeline is important to consider before making a big-ticket purchase that isn’t easy to transport with you.

 

sofa buying guide

Question 3: Are You into Trends?

A trendy sofa looks great right now, but you might find you’re sick of it after a short time. Depending on what you think of trends, here’s what we’d recommend for your next couch.

Your solve:

  • I love trends: If you can’t say no to a sofa with a bold color or statement pattern, consider opting for a lower-cost option rather than investing in a more expensive one. Unlike decorative accents, you can’t as easily move a sofa from room to room when you get tired of it. Don’t sink your money into something you’ll be sick of in a year. Instead, consider incorporating that velvet trend into a few pillows.
  • Trends don’t phase me: If you’re looking for a sofa that can transcend your current tastes, consider investing in a high-quality option. This can be a sofa with a neutral fabric, a quality leather option, or even a sofa with a versatile shape, such as a chaise that can switch sides.

The Bottom Line: If you want to splurge on a quality sofa, it’s important to find one that works for both now and later.

 

Question 4: Do You Have Kids or Pets?

Although we love kids and we love pets, it’s a fact that they are the culprits behind a lot of our furniture’s wear and tear. Be sure to factor your real and fur babies into the equation when buying a piece of furniture.

Your solve:

  • Don’t stress: One way around this is to choose a budget-friendly sofa that you don’t mind replacing as it gets worn out.
  • Call for reinforcements: The alternative is to invest in a higher quality option. Opt for a sofa that’s durable and can take whatever your kids/pets throw at it. Consider choosing a stain-resistant fabric or with a slipcover that you can easily toss in the wash. Quality leather is also great for pets. You want something that won’t stain or rip easily and doesn’t attract fur like a magnet.

The Bottom Line: You know your kids and pets the best, so factor them into the picture when deciding what sofa makes sense for your family.

 

sofa buying guide

Question 5: How Much Time Will You Spend on Your Sofa?

Just like your mattress, if you use your couch a lot, don’t make yourself miserable with something that’s uncomfortable.

Your solve:

  • My sofa is just for looks: If you’re always on the go and rarely spend time on your sofa, no need to invest in a high-quality, ultra-comfy option. Something inexpensive but stylish can suffice.
  • My sofa is my other half: If you’re a self-proclaimed couch potato or your living room revolves around TV-viewing, don’t skimp on a cheap sofa that makes you uncomfortable. You can find plenty of inexpensive and mid-range sofas that are also comfortable and of high quality.

The Bottom Line: Invest in quality and comfort for the things you use daily, like your mattress and sofa.

 

Ready to find your perfect sofa?

Read our guide to buying this living room staple online to make shopping for a sofa as comfortable as lounging on one.

Or, if you want some insurance before splurging on a sofa, try on some options in your home before you make the investment. Modsy can help show you how real sofas will look in your actual home with our 3D designs.

Design My Room

Skimp or Splurge: 4 Factors to Consider When Shopping for a Rug

Modsy 3d

If you are in the process of designing your home, you might have discovered the dirty word that is “budget.” Furniture is expensive, and the reality of designing a home (without spending a small fortune) often means making trade-offs. One of our stylists’ favorite tricks for designing quality spaces on a limited budget is to use a mix of budget-friendly and investment pieces.

In our new “Skimp or Splurge” series, we’ll tackle different items from sofas to storage, and show you how to decide where to spend and where to save your money.

This week we’re taking on the question of rugs. Available in an impossibly wide range of prices, it can be difficult to know how to choose an option that is right for you. We asked our stylists how they decide when to splurge and when to save on rugs.

1. What do you want from your rug?

The main difference between an 8’x10’ rug that costs $300 and one that costs a month’s mortgage payment is quality. High-quality rugs have a richness of color and a plush texture, and they can last you a decade or more if you care for them properly. Low-cost rugs, on the other hand, will fade and pill quickly and need to be replaced more frequently.

If you are working with a tight budget, but don’t want to completely skimp on quality, consider a flat-woven rather than a tufted rug. Flat-woven rugs tend to be available in larger sizes at lower price-points, and their tight weave renders them more durable.

Stylist Tip: With so many options on the market today, you don’t have to sacrifice style for budget. Our stylists can recommend budget-friendly rug options that work for your space and style.

2. What’s your timeline?

As with any big ticket furniture item, how long you plan to live somewhere is an important factor to consider before making a purchase.

If your living situation is temporary, you might consider skimping and going with a cheap option. If you’re settled down or plan to live in the same place long-term, investing in a quality rug makes more sense.

Also consider that rugs, unlike other pieces of bulky furniture, are relatively easy to move. They can be rolled up making them much easier to transport and store. Unlike other items, if you get tired of seeing your rug in the living room, it can be repurposed in another room.

3. What room will the rug be in?

Where you plan to place the rug is also an important factor to think about when considering whether to invest or save your money. Ask yourself if the room where you plan to use the rug will get a lot of foot traffic.

A place like your entryway might not make the most sense for an investment rug as it is more likely to get stomped on and worn down from heavy use. Conversely, your living room or bedroom might be a great place for an investment rug.

Stylist Tip: Also consider if you are a shoes-on household. Habits like these are difficult to break (especially if you live with other people) so consider how your lifestyle might affect the lifetime of your rug when deciding if it is better to skimp or splurge.

4. Do you have kids or pets?

Often people say they don’t want to invest in a rug because their kids and pets are prone to messes. One way to confront this conundrum is to go with a lower cost rug that you won’t miss when it gets destroyed. However, this approach might cost you more in the long run, as cheap rugs tend to fall apart quicker and are often made of materials that absorb stains easily.

Rather than replacing a $200 rug every six months, consider investing in a high-quality rug that can stand up to the messes and won’t get destroyed immediately by your children or furry friends. Natural fibers can be a great option, as they are sturdy and are easy to clean.

If you have young children, also consider that cheap rugs are often made of synthetic materials, which can be potentially toxic. If you have a little one who is an avid crawler, it might be worth investing in a high-quality rug that is free of toxic protectants and fire retarding chemicals.

 

Want to Try a Rug in Your 3D Home?