Furniture Essentials & Extras For Your First Place

Furniture is a huge first apartment expense…but what do you really NEED? Instead of splurging on everything, check out these furniture essentials and extras to make smart decisions and save money where possible!

Furniture Essentials

Living Room

  • Sofa / futon/ large seating
  • Chair (guests!)
  • Coffee Table
  • Lamp


  • Mattress/Box spring
  • Lamp
  • Bedding – sheets, comforter/quilt, pillows
  • Dresser or closet
  • Mirror


  • Sitting area (chairs & small table)
  • Pantry space – whether in cabinets or closet
  • Appliances – Refrigerator, stove, oven

Furniture Extras

Living Room

  • Rug
  • TV
  • TV Stand or shelving
  • End tables
  • Accent chairs
  • Extra lighting / lamps
  • Decor
  • Art or hanging decor
  • Decorative throws and pillows


  • Bed frame
  • Headboard / foot-board
  • Bedside tables
  • Extra bedding set – sheets
  • Extra drawer space
  • Sitting chair
  • Rug
  • Decorative shelving
  • Standing mirror
  • Art
  • Decorative pillows


  • Formal kitchen table & chairs
  • Rolling cart / bar / island
  • Appliances – dishwasher, microwave
  • Art and decor

With furniture, focus first on theĀ essentials. As you can see, it’s not a long list of things you should have or start shopping for when moving in. By doing your shopping online and in thrift stores, you can limit your furnishing costs, and even with the essential you can space your buying. The only items you should really try to have on day one are a mattress and bedding. Then, buy things as the need arises, starting with the essentials. As you settle into your place, you can move onto new decorative items, extra furnishings, and other fun pieces to show your style. This way, you can slowly furnish your place without becoming overwhelmed!

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Author My First Apartment

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Sarah is a dog lover and advocate for conversation & laughing at your own jokes. Since finishing her college career in communications, she began working (and living) in Atlanta. After living in a few different apartments over the last few years, she's ready to share experiences. Stay tuned for adventures, tips and advice!

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