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Furniture shopping in Canberra

By koalathebear - 31 May 2010 35

We’re moving house and need to buy furniture for the new house.

IKEA has a flat delivery rate of $295 but you can’t order online so we’d have to do a day a trip to IKEA to buy everything and then have it delivered – that’s a little inconvenient at this stage.

Bringithome will go to IKEA, buy and deliver on your behalf but they charge 23% of the total purchase price so you have to be careful of what you want to buy so that you don’t end up paying ridiculous fees.  We wouldn’t want to pay more than the IKEA flat delivery rate.

Domayne and Freedom have nice furniture albeit expensive.  We also rather liked some of the shelves at the Whitewood Warehouse.

Has anyone bought anything from Licas Furniture World?  Apparently the furniture is made from Malaysian timber, assembled there and imported over.  We were trying to steer away from Chinese imports because sometimes the quality of the wood treatment is suspect with dubious (sometimes toxic) chemicals used.  The furniture looks nice enough but we have no idea of the quality.

Any recommendations would be most appreciated.

What’s Your opinion?

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35 Responses to
Furniture shopping in Canberra
inlymbo 11:11 pm 31 May 10

*laugh* Koalathebear you are so polite.

*sigh* You can’t even ask a question about furniture without being crucified by the RIOTACT mob.

How much can a ‘Koalthebear’ bear…… quite a lot it seems…..

koalathebear 10:45 pm 31 May 10

MWF: *laugh* No really – we need to buy furniture. We moved back to Australia last year from living and working overseas. Shipping was hideously expensive so we brought almost no furniture back with us, we rented a house here that was furnished so we had to buy all our white goods, sofa, dining set, desks, bookshelves etc etc 😀

MWF 10:25 pm 31 May 10

“We’re moving house and need to buy furniture for the new house.”

You don’t really NEED furniture for the new house you just WANT it. Go on, admit it!

I recommend moving to the new house, getting by with what you already have and then furnishing the new house sustainably and tastefully.

Bit by bit and thoughtful always looks better than a whole houseful of one furniture store almost spewed into your home. JMO.

Hackett Heckler 9:20 pm 31 May 10

BringItHome are fantastic. They do the driving, They do the shopping and heavy lifting. They deliver to my door. I go online and work out what I want get the codes and send in the order and get an invoice and pay them for their trouble.

Because the biggest pain in the posterior of shopping at Ikea is having to get your heavy goods on a trolley and through a checkout. Either load your car or get a delivery then drive home.

I have compared other furniture shops. Depends what you are after. Depends what you want to spend.

Have you thought of shopping in one place and getting a bulk discount? Usually would cover the delivery costs. I have done that with appliances and been pleasantly surprised.

Also I must warn you on how much stuff often has to be ordered in by the store. You can’t really buy whats on the floor and that can take weeks.

At least with Ikea you can check whats in stock.

koalathebear 9:20 pm 31 May 10

Felix the Cat:

“If you can’t wait then there are plenty of other furniture shops in Fyshwick to choose from.”

Yup – we’ve checked out for the list of all furniture shops in Fyshwick. We were hoping for some recommendations, though of places that people had visited where they’d had good experiences. We had visited the store mentioned above (Licas) and were wondering if anyone else had bought from there because the prices were reasonable but we weren’t sure of the durability of the goods.

koalathebear 9:18 pm 31 May 10

indigoid: your loyalty to bringithome is truly admirable! We were pondering hitching a ride to Sydney with my brother (he has a truck 🙂 when he next goes – but can’t really spare the time right now so we are definitely going to use bringithome for some of our furniture needs. It’s just that our original list of furniture items was quite long (well over $4,000) and the fees that would have been charged would have been very high given what we wanted to buy.

We have been able to buy some nice furniture from Freedom, Harvey Norman and Whitewood Warehouse and would like to be able to buy more locally which is why I’m asking for recommendations. As much as I like IKEA, it would also be nice to know what’s available to buy around Canberra. We’ve actually been pretty lucky so far in finding a lot of stuff here. 🙂

Funky1 8:22 pm 31 May 10

Wanon said :

If you’re looking at IKEA, you’re probably after cheap decent furniture. May I suggest Fantastic Furniture in Fyshwick. Very very cheap and of decent quality.

Fantastic Furniture is nothing like the quality of IKEA. From my experience of FF (and it was awhile ago so may have changed) their packages are great for those looking for the most items of furntiure you can buy for a limited price and therefore fit out as much of an empty house as you can for someone who has just moved out of home and has nothing to start with.

Vision2010 8:18 pm 31 May 10

In my view, there aren’t really any good furniture stores in Canberra: they’re either really overpriced or their range is too limited. A trip to IKEA is the way to go for good value stuff–and indigold is right: get someone else to do the hard work for you. I think Freedom has comparable quality to IKEA but charge a lot more. If you want really good quality stuff, why not try Thor’s Hammer in Yarralumla? With them you pay a little more than most, but you get excellent quality and service and you end up with furniture that will last for ages.

Felix the Cat 8:17 pm 31 May 10

I think IKEA is coming to Canberra soon – Fyshwick somewhere at/near DFO?
If you can’t wait then there are plenty of other furniture shops in Fyshwick to choose from.

Wanon 6:23 pm 31 May 10

If you’re looking at IKEA, you’re probably after cheap decent furniture. May I suggest Fantastic Furniture in Fyshwick. Very very cheap and of decent quality.

Pork Hunt 5:08 pm 31 May 10

Crikey indigold!

In the time time it must have taken to research and write that post you could have done to poor fellows Ikea shopping for him lol

AG Canberra 5:03 pm 31 May 10

Note – ANY timber furniture imported from overseas is treated with methyl bromide (generally in the shipping container). So it doesn’t make a difference if it comes from China, Malaysia or the North Pole. It will still be fumigated prior to entry.

Same with all imported fresh fruit and vegetables….

indigoid 4:52 pm 31 May 10

This ended up a bit longer than I intended. Sorry :-/

OP, What part of the 23% BringItHome fee is ridiculous, exactly? Is your spare time of such pathetically low value that you could achieve the same end at a lower cost? If so, and if you still want Ikea furniture, I do recommend that you visit them at Homebush and shop for yourself.

You’d need (based on my experience commuting at mostly legal speeds between Canberra and Sydney by motorcycle at least once a week for the last 12 months, and also several visits to Ikea) a bare minimum of six hours of your time to drive to and from their store. Even if you knew exactly what you wanted when you got there and which aisles/sections of their warehouse it sat in, you’d probably need at least another hour to complete the purchases and get them into your vehicle.

So… seven hours so far, and we haven’t even considered the cost of the transport. Many large Ikea items are by necessity in quite long (if flat) packages that simply don’t fit in your typical small car. If you didn’t already have an urban terrorist 4WD, or a van or light truck, you’d need to rent one. Budget currently have a “moving van $295 for a weekend” deal (actually a light truck) going at present which looks like it’d be good for an Ikea trip, and in fact the last time my SO used BringItHome they used a very similar truck but rented from Avis.

My flatmate’s Isuzu County (Land Rover Defender 110 with an Isuzu engine) has a similar engine to many of these Isuzu light trucks and consistently uses 10.5L/100km of diesel, or around $85 for 600km at a typical $1.35/litre. The trucks are bigger, boxier and heavier and likely use more diesel than this, but for the same of argument we’ll assume that they don’t…

So 7+ hours work AND $295+ rental cost AND $85+ fuel cost… Is that 23% (or the 17% they used to charge) still sounding ridiculous? I have no idea how much the various insurances and other corporationish bits cost, so I’m not going to consider those. Safe to assume that they are non-zero, though.

FWIW I’m a semi-regular Ikea customer (much easier now that I live in Sydney) and my SO is a happy repeat customer of BringItHome. I think I’d have to be spending in excess of $4000 (unlikely!) before I’d reconsider paying the extra 23%, and even then I’d probably still do it.

luther_bendross 4:34 pm 31 May 10

Check out 1825 Interiors who are in Fyshwick somewhere. Good stuff made from recycled timbers. We picked up a few items from them and were/are surprised by the quality & price.

emd 3:54 pm 31 May 10

If you like French antiques, then Kate at Histoires can help you.
I like secondhand, there’s lots of places in Fyshwick with good furniture at reasonable prices.
There’s also a guy at the Old Bus Depot Markets who does handmade timber furniture – for the quality, the prices seemed quite reasonable last time I was there (which was ages ago, but he’s a regular stall).

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