I am often asked at my job – what is best way to choose when purchasing a whole room of furniture that can’t be afforded right away. It certainly is an intimidating proposal, and with an open floor plan, a whole living room layout, dining room layout, and entry, that is a lot of expensive pieces to buy and it feels like you need them all at once.

The secret is being intentional and asking yourself how you use each of your rooms and what you would actually use most. But don’t forget that your home is the place that you live and love, and for me, work, so don’t forget to find pieces and details that bring you joy every time you see them.

Buy first what you would use right away

If there is something that you would use every day that you can afford first, definitely make it a priority. In our new home, the first piece of furniture we splurged on with our new budget was a more expensive, new bed for our master bedroom. It was worth the splurge and it makes us feel spoiled every single night or anytime we relax in bed. The second large purchase was our live-edge dining table. We love having people over and often sit down for casual lunches or larger dinners, so as soon as we received our table we started planning. Having our dining table comes with the added bonus of also filling our home with our favorite people.

Something we don’t have quite yet is the nice coffee table that we are currently saving for. This is something that would definitely be nice to have and we would use often, but isn’t necessary to enjoy watching TV together, having people over to sit on our sectional, or for the main purpose of our room. For you, though, a coffee table may be necessary! As you think through these things, be honest with yourself about what may be worth waiting and little to get exactly what would last you years and years.

Buy second what you want the most

It’s totally cool with getting super excited about certain things and specific furniture pieces! The thing that makes your home – your home are the things you see everyday and are pretty much obsessed with. For me, it’s my big prints of my husband’s photography and a high-end essential oil diffuser. Seeing these things will keep you excited about your future purchases and especially if they are little things, filling your walls or shelves with a little decor you love is affordable and inspiring. A few fake plants, a cool, industrial lamp you can see from your desk, or a chair for your reading corner that really makes your home feel like you are worth prioritizing too!

Buy last the things you still need

As you have been living with your space for the period of time that it takes to save for the first two steps, I am sure you have come up with many things you would like and use! Living with your space is the best way to figure out what you need best for your family. Keep a single list in one place in your phone or home, and prioritize it after writing things on your list for a while so you don’t make any compulsive purchases. I always prefer chatting with my husband about these decisions, since he has a steadying presence and logical thought process, so I don’t get swayed by anything that only I want on more surface level and we can really have what we need as a family in every room.

Fourth: Don’t buy anything in addition

The secret to saving money in your home is not about what you buy, but more about buying only what you could use and what you really, really love.  Simple right! Nope, in reality, this is the hardest part. But our responsibility to our environment and our pocketbooks means figuring out where to say no and how to stay happy with what you have are really the most important things we can do in this process.

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