Outfitting an apartment on a budget? Try Home Reserve!

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Between the sofa that I inherited from my parents and the chairs that I accumulated in Virginia thrift stores, I've never really needed to worry about furniture all that much. However, now that the sofa has died an honorable death and we're living in a new place, my wife has put her foot down: we need to buy new furniture.

Of course, we'll probably end up going the IKEA route. Their pieces are fairly durable and looks nice, although a bit generic. My wife really likes the EKTORP series loveseats. Personally, I think that "EKTORP" sounds like the noise a cat makes when it's vomiting, but I have to admit that the furniture is blandly appealing. On the bright side, the slipcovers are really reasonable, which is a pretty big selling point, given that our 2-year old daughter has juice-spilling issues.

On the other hand, we recently came across HomeReserve.com. Like IKEA, HomeReserve sells furniture that is designed for self-assembly. It comes in a wide array of fabrics and colors, and (supposedly) only requires a screwdriver to put together. Also, like IKEA, Home Reserve sells an array of slipcovers. On the other side, Home Reserve's lines are all designed for shipping, and their costs are surprisingly reasonable. Best of all, their prices are significantly less than IKEA's.

Definitely something to think about...

Bruce Watson is a freelance writer, blogger, and all-around cheapskate. His wife has made it abundantly clear that thrift store furniture shopping is NOT happening in New York.

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