How to shop for the best value in Amish Furniture

You’ve made the decision to invest in Amish made furniture. You know you’re getting unprecedented quality and longevity, but you’re probably wondering- What this exceptional craftsmanship is going to cost you? And why do Amish furniture retailers so rarely offer up a set price list? This is because the answer to the cost question is as vague as it sounds.

It depends…

...on the type of wood used

...on the hardware chosen

...on additional features and add-ons

...on customizations and upgrades

...on finishes

Unlike conventional furniture stores, Modern Bungalow and other Amish furniture retailers are not selling one-size-fits-all pieces. The final price of the furniture is affected by all the things mentioned above and more.

Is heirloom-quality Amish-made furniture going to cost more than pre-made furniture? Yes. Are there ways to save and still get great value? Absolutely.

Here’s a few key pointers to remember before making the decision to invest in something that will last the rest of your life and beyond:

  • Determine your budget ahead of time
  • Spend money in proportion to where you spend most of your time (dining table, bed, chairs, etc).
  • Create a timeline. You don’t have to buy everything at once!
    • Which pieces do you truly need? Which can you do without for now?
  • Consider different ways to arrange furniture to help optimize your space and buy less.
  • Learn a few things about the furniture (below) to make your selections with the best value

Every piece of furniture we sell is of the highest quality and craftsmanship backed with a lifetime guarantee, but it doesn’t have to cost your life savings to get it. There are a number of ways you can save money without compromising value by educating yourself on how the furniture is made, what it’s made of, and which collections are more economical.

Savings Opportunity:

Type of Wood

If you want your investment to last, you’ll want to buy solid hardwood furniture. Hardwoods are preferable, as opposed to a softwood like pine, because the wood is strong, stable and if northern growing, more dense. But you don't have to purchase furniture made of walnut or mahogany for it to last.

Value alternatives to consider:

  • Red Oak, soft maple (still a hardwood), and character cherry (with knots and imperfections) are the most economical.
  • Choose plain sawn oak over quartersawn to save money.

Keep in mind that authentic Amish made furniture is always crafted from solid woods. Be wary if the price for the piece seems too good to be true. Composites like MDF or particle board are beautified with veneers to make them look like solid woods of every sort from oak to mahogany. You’ll save money initially, but as the veneer comes unglued your only option will be to get rid of the furniture and buy again.

At Modern Bungalow, our collection is curated so that only solid wood furniture enters our customer’s homes.

Savings Opportunity:

Tables and Chairs

Tables and chairs are going to be susceptible to lots of wear and tear, which is why spending a little more for durability is important. There’s still opportunity to find value by understanding which high quality features will cost less than others.

Value alternatives to consider:

  • Buy solid, one piece tables without leaves.
  • Tables with legs will typically cost less than tables with central pedestals.
  • Arm chairs will cost more than side chairs. Consider skipping the captain's chairs at the ends in favor of 6 of the same chairs.

Savings Opportunity:

Drawers vs Shelves

The number of drawers included in a dresser, chest or armoire will have a large effect on the price. Drawers require more material and labor. It might seem counterintuitive, but this means that a tall armoire that has only shelves is likely to cost less than a short chest of only drawers.

Value alternatives to consider:

  • Amish made furniture is highly customizable - mix shelves and drawers or stick to only shelves and add a door. You can ask for anything you can dream up!
  • Alternate drawer hardware (knobs and pulls) to match tastes and find value. Some manufacturers will also let you supply your own hardware.

Savings Opportunity:

Finishes

Before the piece of furniture is complete, it will go through the finishing process. This includes full sanding and staining as well as additional techniques like distressing, wire brushing, and hand-scraping. While lovely, these additional add-ons could cost you up to 20% extra.

Value alternatives to consider:

  • Go with the standard finish which is beautiful, lasting, and economical.
  • Stick to a single tone finish to save money.
  • Time is also money! If you go with a standard finish, many items are available in a quick-ship collection

Savings Opportunity:

Low-Priced Collections

Much like buying the lowest cost house in the best neighborhood, the very best furniture makers will also have low cost collections. You know you’re getting quality products backed by exceptional makers even when ordering these lower-priced pieces.

Ask one of our Modern Bungalow staff about low-priced collections. The Shenandoah Collection from Simply Amish, a maker with a reputation for the highest standard of excellence in design and craftsmanship, is clean and simple while offering exceptional value.

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If you’re in the market for Amish made furniture you already know it will cost more than an assembly-line piece from a warehouse furniture store. It is made of solid wood, pieced together by hand and not mass-produced. Even sale prices won’t seem cheap. But consider this:

If you buy a less expensive piece of furniture from another store such as IKEA or Target, the likelihood of replacement in five or ten years is high. Multiply that low price by five or more and you’ll see what that “cheap” piece of furniture will actually cost you in the long run.

Prepared with a little more information about how you can save, it’s worth taking the time to come into our showroom and talk with an experienced staff member who can listen to your needs and wants as well as your constraints to help get you the best value without compromising on any of the quality that goes into every piece of Amish built furniture.


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