As a lover of beautiful things, I take pride in how I furnish and decorate my house to make it a home. In the past I was lucky enough to have a disposal income and being single meant after using my money on living expenses, further study and travel, any leftover would be spent on the latest, brand new ‘pretties’ for my home. The older I have become, the more I have veered away from consumerism and materialism, as I see the importance of caring for the environment and the future of our planet. I have become happier to recycle, donate and sell my unwanted belongings. I have also become thriftier in reusing, creating or borrowing items I feel I may need. Now on maternity leave, with no income and still a mortgage to pay, my partner and I are very conscious of where our money goes. With our growing family we had discussed the need of a larger lounge. I had bought a 2.5 seater years prior and it was quickly becoming too small when we all piled on. So, we had a couple of options: 1. buy a brand new lounge, costing over $1000 2. Well our current lounge and source a second hand one Now with the likes of eBay, gumtree and more recently Facebook marketplace (my personal favourite), buying and selling second hand has never been easier. You can list items for free and people contact you direct if they are interested in purchasing. Furthermore you can scope for items in your area ensuring you don’t have to travel far to collect your purchase (or some sellers may post at the buyers expense). I have loved selling my surplus items for years now, in order to earn back a fraction of what I paid to purchase them in the first place. But also knowing they are going to a new home where they will be used and appreciated makes my heart sing. So with my thrifty hat well and truly on, I had been browsing for larger second hand lounges for a few months. Now I admit I’m a bit pickier with a lounge as I want to know it’s clean and has been looked after. Lots that were for sale either had seen their hey-day, were located too far away or were pristine and still priced like brand new. Then I found the one! It was the right colour, was the right size, in great condition, in a location not too far and it was listed at a great price. So I contacted the buyer (and after I got the partners approval the end of the day he would be lounging on it too!!!!) and waited. Their first response was that it had been sold pending pickup, but as soon as I read that, they sent another message saying the buyer has fallen through! The lounge was ours if we still wanted it. I tried a bit of cheeky bargaining (I encourage everyone to do this on more expensive items) but they were fixed on their price. That didn’t matter as this lounge fulfilled our needs and we could collect it the next day! I was so excited. Just as excited as I have been buying brand new lounges in the past (for well over quadruple the price)!! I then listed our old lounge and had interest shown almost immediately. A buyer had been lined up and would collect the following weekend. Yes! So the new lounge has arrived and it fits perfectly. It’s comfortable and meets our needs. With the sale of our lounge we have broken even so we aren’t out of pocket and we couldn’t be happier with what feels like a brand new lounge room. The best part is that we won’t stress as much about getting a small mark on this lounge like I know we would if it cost us a small fortune (although we plan to look after it so we get years of use of course)!

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