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Buying Second Hand: 9 Home Items To Buy “Used”

There are obvious items for your home that are best to buy “new” — like mattresses and electronics — but there are lots of items that you might consider buying second hand. Some purchases are even better when they’ve been previously loved and left behind, only to be found again by you, the shopper who gets a great deal. We’ve rounded up 9 items for your home that you can look into buying second hand (because “new” isn’t always better).

1. Musical instruments
Most instruments are classic in design, so buying second hand drums, guitars, or a piano makes sense. Not only will they work just as well, but the age can add character and a story to the piece. If the instrument was passed down within your family — even better! Chances are you’ll be able to pass the piece down to younger generations, too.

2. Kids’ toys
Are your kids begging for a swing set, an miniature car, or a basketball goal? There’s nothing wrong with buying bigger kid items like these from friends or family (or even would-be strangers) who’ve outgrown them. Sure, they may show some signs of wear – but new items would have scratches and dings in no time, too.

3. Bikes
For kids and adults alike, keeping an eye out for previously owned bikes is a great way to save a chunk of change.

4. Tools
Handheld tools like hammers, saws, and screwdrivers are worth buying second hand, since cosmetic flaws and normal wear-and-tear aren’t likely to matter. If you’re able to test the items first, you could even consider purchasing used pressure washers and shop-vacs.

5. Exercise equipment
Treadmills, stationary bicycles, and weights are great items to consider buying second hand. If you are buying equipment from an individual, chances are, the items weren’t used very often — and you might be able to snag barely used equipment at a fraction of the bought-new price.

6. Furniture
There are lots of furniture pieces worth buying second hand, especially if you know where to shop for them. If you plan to reupholster a piece of furniture anyway, check around for used items. As a general rule of thumb: Avoid buying used furniture pieces that would be prone to a lot of wear and tear, like kitchen tables and cribs, but previously owned book cases, end tables, and dining tables can add a touch of character and personality to a space.

7. Spare appliances
Need an extra refrigerator for your garage or a toaster oven for your basement? There’s no need to buy these non-essential items new. Since you likely have a back-up consider buying second hand.

8. Dishes
Estate sales are great places to snag a set of nice dishes at a reduced price. If you have a flare for vintage and classic styles — like silver and China — you might have even more options.

9. Art
Pieces of art and wall hangings tend to become more valuable with age, and they’re great things to consider buying second hand. While the prices may not be any lower, the character that an older piece of art can bring to a home is often unrivaled.