GET DONATIONS THROUGH FURNITURE BANKS
If your household is low income, then you may be able to find help through a furniture bank. The North American Furniture Bank Association is a nonprofit organization that helps individuals and families find free or low-cost furniture. You can search for a location near you that can help you. The organization operates in the United States and Canada.
FreeCycle can help you locate just about anything for free just by searching the site. You can search your city and state to find a FreeCycle group near you that may have some free furniture available.
DO YOU SEE PEOPLE MOVING? ASK THEM!
If you see someone in your neighborhood moving, ask if there is any furniture you can take off their hands. They might be more than willing to have less big things to move around.
FIND SOME NEWLYWEDS
Newlyweds are going through a lot and combining households can be stressful. But that also means they’ll probably have two of everything when they only need one. If you know newlyweds, they may be the perfect people to ask if they have any furniture they wouldn’t mind giving you.
Many churches are quick to help people in the community in need. If you are in financial trouble, local churches may be able to raise money for your furniture or make donations from church members.
The Salvation Army has locations throughout the United States. The nonprofit organization Salvation army offers coupons to individuals and families for furniture’s as well as in need of things like housing, clothing and furniture. If you find yourself in a situation where you can’t afford the furniture you need, this can be a great option.
Goodwill stores often sell things that people donate. However, my local Goodwill sometimes puts things like furniture and clothes out for free for people who need them. They’re not always in great shape, but free is free.
HEAD TO COLLEGE CAMPUSES
At the end of college semesters, when students return home to rest, there is usually a lot left over in the dorms. Stop by your local campuses and see if the dumpster is empty of furniture after students leave for winter, spring, or summer break.
I am a member of several local Facebook groups. They are technically buying and selling groups, but many people offer free stuff just to get rid of them. I have seen sofas, beds, bedroom sets, bookshelves, recliners and more, some of them even in excellent condition! Join as many of these active groups as you can find. If it’s not against the rules, post a Looking post to see if anyone has the furniture you need for free. Just make sure you have a way to collect it!
VISIT GARAGE SALES IN THE LATE AFTERNOON OR EVENING
Most people head to yard sales early in the morning to try and get all the good deals. Garage sales people know this, so they may not be as willing to do business with you in the morning. Instead, go later in the day when the garage sale is winding down. If there’s any leftover furniture, see if you can trade with the host to get it for free if you pick it up, or trade it for something they have.
Speaking of swappingthat’s always an option if you want something for free. Maybe you have something a friend or relative wants or needs more than your extra couch.
CHANGE OTHER HOUSEHOLD ITEMS
Or, you can swap out other household items, like a lamp for a side table. Explore the Facebook groups you’ve joined to see what other people need. You may have something similar that you can offer in exchange for a piece of furniture.
VISIT A STORE FOR FREE
Some locations in the United States have free stores available to the community. You can take what you need from them. The Baltimore Free Store in Baltimore, Maryland, for example, is a nonprofit organization designed to help those with low incomes get what they need.
ORDER GIFT CARDS FOR YOUR BIRTHDAY
Instead of birthday or Christmas gifts, maybe you can tell everyone you usually get a gift to be a gift card to a particular furniture store. Chances are you can accumulate enough to make a big furniture purchase.
COMMUNITY SPRING CLEANUP
Some communities have community cleanups in the spring. If yours does, take a look around the neighborhood when it happens to see if furniture is thrown out with the trash.
CREATE A WISH LIST
Head to Amazon, Target, or another favorite online retailer that sells furniture to create a wish list. That way, whenever it’s a special occasion where gift-giving is involved, you can point people in the direction of
SET UP A HOUSEWARMING REGISTRY
If you are moving to a new place then you should consider setting up a housewarming registry. Target and Bed Bath and Beyond offer housewarming registries for clients. Now everyone you know will know what furniture you need!
SET UP A GOFUNDME
If things take a turn for the worse and you really can’t afford to buy furniture, setting up a GoFundMe account can help. This site allows others to donate money to you. Set your goal to the amount you need to cover the furniture you need to buy.
You can use Reddit to search for subreddits in your town or city. You can find people giving away some furniture for free.
VISIT YOUR LOCAL WELFARE OFFICE
Many states and counties offer assistance for low-income individuals and families. If you fall into that category, you can visit your local office to see what is available for assistance. I know a family that was able to get some money to buy a bed and sofa for their home because of their income.