Attractive and Reasonable Office Furniture
February 20, 2014 2:40 PM   Subscribe

Hi, does anyone have recommendations for attractive, well-designed and relatively affordable office furniture? I am looking for something that is a step up from Stapes and Office Depot, especially for conference tables. This is for a true office, not a home office. Any suggestions would be much appreciated. Thanks.
posted by beisny to Shopping (10 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Actual office office furniture is craaaazy expensive. Chances are good you'd be happiest buying secondhand. (Tons--tons--of companies build out pimp spaces and then fold immediately, or move to a new office themselves, and it's usually cheaper to just abandon the furniture and buy new than it is to unbuild, pack, and rebuild.) You can get pretty nice stuff for a fraction of the price if you buy used.

If you're in the Chicago area let me know and I can give you a contact.
posted by phunniemee at 2:44 PM on February 20, 2014 [1 favorite]

Yep, I outfitted my last real office all from the used office furniture people. We got 10 cubes, two large conference tables, three office desks, a bunch of office chairs and lobby furniture all for like 40% what it would have cost new.
posted by magnetsphere at 2:47 PM on February 20, 2014 [1 favorite]

Seconding secondhand; some stores carry both used and new office furniture, so you can get an idea what your options are. Conference tables in particular are likely to be a good deal when bought secondhand, since it's not like they get massive scuffy use by people sitting at them all day.
posted by asperity at 2:48 PM on February 20, 2014 [1 favorite]

I'm in NYC. For 2nd hand, did you guys use craigslist or is there a better option?
posted by beisny at 2:50 PM on February 20, 2014

Craigslist's an option, but there are stores that specialize in used/new office furniture, too. Not sure about NYC ones but a search for "used office furniture nyc" turns up a bunch. I've bought from such a store in central NJ but don't think you're likely to want to go that far unless the NYC prices are ridiculous.
posted by asperity at 2:53 PM on February 20, 2014

Look for an office furniture liquidator. The company I work for has bought very fancy stuff for pennies on the dollar. Ours is a bit out of the way (cheap warehouse space), but they always have recommended truck delivery people to get it over to the office. Try Google/Yelp/Craig's List.
posted by quince at 3:11 PM on February 20, 2014

2nding the furniture liquidator. I got most of my furniture at these places and I ended up spending less than half the budgeted amount on office furniture.

A good way to find them is to find companies that specialize in setting up offices for companies, they'll often either buy and resell the furniture themselves or know who does.

Public Auctions are another place this furniture often turns up.
posted by bswinburn at 3:16 PM on February 20, 2014 [1 favorite]

Also, check with university or college surplus departments. Here is an example from Syracuse University (it's probably not as close as you're hoping for, but it gives you an idea of what may be available). Not every place allows purchase by the public, but you may find some deals at those who do.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 3:43 PM on February 20, 2014

If you want to go teh new route, Staples, Office Depot and OfficeMax all have separate contract furniture divisions that sell the real deal stuff. Another option is Steelcase, which I don't think any of those 3 have dealer contracts with. Steelcase and Teknion are the 2 most current furnishing manufacturers. If looking for used furniture, try to look for those brands.
posted by WeekendJen at 6:10 AM on February 21, 2014 [1 favorite]

There will definitely be a used office furniture place or a liquidator in your area. I had to get some filing cabinets once (Steelcase is so pricey!) and we found like-new ones for a good price.
posted by radioamy at 8:27 AM on February 21, 2014 [1 favorite]

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