Oh decisions! My kingdom for a great credenza!
March 20, 2009 12:37 PM   Subscribe

This is a two-parter, the first part being about shipping furniture from Jonesboro, Arkansas, to Portland, Oregon, and the second part being about consignment or mid-century modern antique shops in the Jonesboro/Little Rock/Memphis area...

Okay, I've read enough advice here and there to understand that it is far better to just sell off furniture than try to ship it across the U.S., having said that... I'm trying to get four pieces of furniture and six dining chairs from Arkansas to Oregon. These belonged to my husband's grandmother. Fantastic mid-century coffee table, credenza, dining table and retro swoopy dining chairs. His parents have been keeping them there for us and we're all stymied now as to what to do with them.

The cheapest and most personally labor intensive option would be for his Dad to drive the furniture out in the back of his pickup. But, that's three days driving (at least) plus hotel and food and then the trip back. And if one of us flies out to make that trip with him add in airfare and more meals.

It's roughly $3k for a one-way U-Haul plus the airfare back/meals/etc. It's roughly $3k for ABF U-Pack movers based on a quick online quote.

Now, if his parents give away or donate the furniture to Goodwill it certainly gets it off their hands but does nothing for us finding some great mid-century furniture finds here in Oregon. Can I get a dining table, chairs, credenza and coffee table in great shape that are great looking for anywhere near $3k here in Portland. It doesn't seem like it.

On the other hand, if his parents do sell the furniture, it would be nice if they made some money on it -- they are under no obligation to give us any of the proceeds on selling it and I doubt they would do so. But, I hate to see this stuff go to Goodwill... given that I can't swoop in and snag the find of the century myself!

So, what would you do? Ship the furniture for 3k? Any luck with UPack movers or any other kind of furniture shippers?

And, barring that, any advice on good consignment shops or places who would be interested in buying the mid-century furniture in the Jonesboro, Little Rock, Memphis area? I know that it would sell for so much more up here in Portland (well, perhaps I am wrong but there is certainly a very active market for it).
posted by amanda to Home & Garden (4 answers total)
$3K for ABF U-Pack? Have you looked around more than that? I know that some of the "pod" services are notorious for sleazy hold-your-stuff-hostage tactics, but we shipped a bunch of stuff from VA to CA last fall with Door-to-Door and it cost us about $1700. $3K sounds awfully high, unless you need more than one unit to fit it all it. (And if it all fits in the back of your father in law's pickup, then you shouldn't need more than one unit.)

I think the real issue is, if it would cost you more to find similar stuff in Oregon, then shipping seems like a reasonable choice, particularly if there is some sentimental value attached to it.
posted by ambrosia at 1:23 PM on March 20, 2009

I've never used this, but someone sent me a link last week for uShip which is a service where people post what they need to ship and the to/from information and shippers submit bids on doing the job.
posted by birdherder at 2:07 PM on March 20, 2009

If you want to sell them in Little Rock, I know a few people who might be interested. Email's in profile. You're right, though, that you're likely to get a whole lot more money for the stuff in Portland.
posted by box at 2:13 PM on March 20, 2009

You might well be able to get it moved for less than 3K. Contact some of the more reputable moving companies (Bekins, Mayflower, Allied, etc.) for an estimate. I know it only cost me around 5K to move everything I owned (including something like 30 boxes of books, and those fuckers are HEAVY) from NY to Portland a few years ago, and you're moving less stuff a shorter distance. Anyway, it costs nothing to get a free estimate from a mover. Just make sure you use a reputable company.
posted by dersins at 4:01 PM on March 20, 2009

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