Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Our new home in Singapore

After a short hiatus in the Philippines where we realized we weren't quite ready to settle down yet, we were once again packing up our life to move back to Singapore. When we came back to Manila we originally intended to stay indefinitely and so we had sold all our furniture and shipped home about 6 Jumbo balikbayan boxes worth of stuff accumulated through our 7 year stay in Singapore. Coming back, we had to start building a home all over again. It didn't help that we rented an unfurnished apartment so all we had when we arrived in Singapore was a refrigerator and a washer and dryer. Everything else, we had to source on our own. Good thing though that with so many people coming and going in this country, there are so many places to find cheap and/or secondhand furniture.

Here are a couple of places we hit up for cheap and good home finds:

1. www.singaporeexpats.com

We actually sold all our furniture earlier through this site and so we thought we would be able to find some good bargains in here. However, we realized there were very few people posting classified ads on this site (since they started charging people for posting ads) and so we had to look for alternative sites and that's when we discovered...

2. www.craigslist.com.sg

Now this site is a goldmine. There are usually several posts in the furniture, garage sale and baby/kids section everyday from both owners or dealers of new and secondhand furniture. The selection offered a variety of items as well, from designer furniture (think John Erdos) to the more mass market IKEA furniture. This is actually where we got our bedframe/side tables (SGD68) and our sofa (SGD99) for a steal. It helped that when we were looking for furniture, most households were spring cleaning in preparation for Chinese New Year and were looking to offload household items. On the downside, you need to view the items first to check the condition of the item and arrange for transport, which is usually additional cost. However, even with the additional transport costs, items still come out cheaper than buying new.

Photo of our major craigslist find, our queen-sized bedframe with matching side tables (the other side table was put in storage). Japanese-style (close to the floor) so our 2 year old can easily climb up and down from the bed.

Photo of another craigslist find, our lovely purple sectional sofa with chrome legs which can seat 4 people comfortably. In photo as well is our daughter's pink chair and table (Mammut series) and coffee table (Lack series) both bought from IKEA.

3. IKEA Singapore

The landlord in our very first apartment furnished the unit with mostly IKEA items and when we left the unit, we bought those items from her at a discount. It seemed natural then to buy IKEA when we needed additional household items and furniture to complement whatever IKEA furniture we already had. We bought bulk of our furniture again from IKEA this time around (i.e. TV console, coffee table, dining set, kitchen items, bookcases, study tables and chairs). We saved on assembly costs as well since we set up our furniture on our own although we did have some slightly sore hands afterwards.

4. Neighborhood provision shop

We live right beside a busy market and an HDB complex with several neighborhood provision shops. From there, we were able to get plastic containers for storage, plastic cabinets, and odds and ends (kitchen items, batteries, wall hooks etc) at very low prices.

We also got a Free 32 inch flat screen TV when we signed up for the requisite cable, internet and mobile packages. Of course, we had to research a bit and figure out when the company usually had its promotions based on historical data and wait until they rolled it out which was actually within days of us arriving in Singapore.

So, quite a good haul there. Our apartment is now truly a home to be proud of and we didn't even have to spend that much to get it fitted out. Now if only I could get rid of this new craigslist addiction...

No comments:

Post a Comment