On a budget for furniture? Try consignment

LOS ANGELES "In a good economy we do well. In an economy like this, we do even better," said Bill Mayhew, the manager of the Home Consignment Center in Irvine.

Home Consignment Center also has other Southern California locations, and there are plenty of other consignment stores in the Southland.

But buying at a consignment store is just half the story. It's also a great place to unload your tables, chairs and other pieces of furniture for a good price and without the risk.

"The thought of putting stuff on eBay or the newspaper drove me nuts. I didn't want to have a million people coming over. I have a wife and two daughters, and I didn't think it was safe," said Mike Adler, who regularly buys and sells at consignment stores.

Some designers like to shop at consignment stores because the inventory changes every day.

Deborah Mucillo with Interiors Within Reach, found a dining table she thinks will be just right for her clients.

"Perfect choice, brand new, even though it's at the consigners, fabulous price. I'll have a very happy client," said Muccillo.

A lot of times, consignment stores will see plenty of their sellers turn into their buyers.

"Since I was giving a lot of my good stuff away, I figure it was time to furnish the house with some of the things other people had let go," said Adler.

Wondering how consignment works?

"We will take a look at an item, make sure it's in good condition and make sure it's a salable item and not too dated. We will then take it and put a price on it, and if the consigner accepts that, we will take it in at that price and sell it for that price. When the item sells, they will get a check for half of that price. It's a 50-50 split," Mayhew explained.

If you're ready to shop, here are a few tips: Carry a list of what you're looking for, know the ideal dimensions for each piece, and inspect furniture carefully

If you're selling, you should understand all terms and conditions, ask about the commission split and find out the wait time to receive your payment.

Consignment stores in Southern California

The Consignment Warehouse
31293 Via Colinas
Westlake Village, CA 91362
(818) 889-1010

Lido Consignment
2700 W. Coast Highway
Newport Beach, CA 92663
(949) 650-7793

Bring Down the House
725 California Ave.
Simi Valley, CA 93065
(805) 527-0120

Surf City Consignment
6901 Warner Ave.
Huntington Beach, CA 92647
(714) 843-3226

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