How long does typical flat pack furniture tend to last you? Are my family particularly destructive?

(21 Posts)
prepperpig Wed 27-May-15 16:58:07

Or am I expecting too much?

Ikea hemnes chest of drawers for example. Lasted 7 years before veneer starting to come off. Homebase bedside cabinets, drawer runners all starting to buckle, hinges going, handles falling off etc after 8 years. Is that sort of time period typical?

The reason for the question is that we need to replace DS2's bedside furniture and I'm wondering whether to replace with flat pack (and have to do the same again in another 7-8 years by which time he'll be 14, and then again when he leaves home at 20ish ) or to spend a bit more now for solid furniture.

Of course he might manage to trash that too…..

prepperpig Wed 27-May-15 17:03:05

and I might be being incredibly optimistic hoping for him to leave home at 20ish grin

EldonAve Wed 27-May-15 17:06:17

We have had a few problems with the bottom panel of drawers buckling but that's about it
Cheap stuff from Argos/ikea/random pine shop all still fine after 15+ years

overmydeadbody Wed 27-May-15 17:07:23

It depends, even in Ikea they have a range from the cheapest stuff to the most expensive.

I have some furniture from Ikea that my parents bought when I was a child that I have now inherited and it is still going strong, but stuff I have bought myself that I have had to replace.

If I can I always look for solid oak or pine furniture second-hand, before resorting to Ikea.

RingtheBells Wed 27-May-15 17:11:35

We got our bedroom furniture from Harveys in one of their never ending sales, plus 20% off and we have had it for about 7 or 8 years and its still OK, it is not flatpack and the delivery men assemble it for you, as a wardrobe may come in 2 or 3 parts. It's a little bit more expensive than Ikea but a lot cheaper than John Lewis etc. but only buy when there is a good offer on.

gingerbreadmam Wed 27-May-15 17:13:26

i had some argos wardrobes that cost about 500 for a 3 and a 2 door wardrobe. they didnt last a year. kept them but comletely ruined.

i have since bought some second hand ikea malm drawers from ikea and honestly cant see us ever having a problem with them theyre so solid and sturdy i was quite surprised how good they were for the price.

if your dc is likely to want to redecorate a lot which chances r they will once they get to teens then id probably invest in the higher end ikea stuff to take that into account. if you want to spend a bit more but not extreme i hear next furniture if pretty good value.

JemFinch Wed 27-May-15 17:13:39

All our ikea stuff is 15 yo and still going strong. Wish it wasn't as I really want to replace it with grown up stuff but seems pointless when there is no need to!

We got all the mid range stuff.

prepperpig Wed 27-May-15 17:16:13

This stuff wasn't the cheapest of the cheap when we bought it. The ikea stuff isn't damaged through heavy use either since the dresser used to be in the dining room and is now in the playroom for storage of puzzles and things that don't come out very often. The veneers have lifted and the pins have come away on the inside which means its now unstable. It has been through two house moves though I guess which will have made a difference.

The homebase bedroom furniture has also been through two house moves. The wardrobes are as good as the day we bought them. The chest of drawers and the bedside cabinets are on the verge of collapse.

NotCitrus Wed 27-May-15 17:26:08

Ikea furniture also really depends on how well you put it together. If you screw every screw tightly and exactly the same amount, and bash in each peg evenly, and bang the whole lot together with a rubber mallet so it's all perfectly square and straight, it can last pretty well.

Friends complain their Ikea stuff falls apart and looking at the wonky fronts I'm not surprised and then realise at the back they've never tacked on the hardboard properly either. Did manage to convince them to buy me pizza and I'd come help the last time. They're amazed how much Ikea quality has improved...

Anything that might get at all damp, like kitchen door fronts, ideally you don't want veneered chipboard or MDF as it'll bulge and lift.

For a teenager, I'd give them a budget, details of how far you might drive to help collect, and tell them to look on Gumtree and Ebay (assuming you are in/near a large town). Solid wood certainly can last a lot longer - but then my dd is still using a cardboard 4-drawer bedside table I had as a student, because despite lots of tape at the back, it still looks good and is practical.

FWIW Mama's and Papa's furniture is worse than Ikea - a cotbed should not be destroyed by a 2yo! Nor the drawers!

prepperpig Wed 27-May-15 18:12:12

He's 7 at the moment but I'm heading over to ebay…..

WhispersOfWickedness Wed 27-May-15 18:19:14

Most of our furniture is ikea stuff (only the beds and sofas aren't blush) ranging between 12 and 5 years old and it is all still fine. Agree that the quality of the building makes a difference grin

prepperpig Wed 27-May-15 18:22:09

I'll tell DH he's crap at flat pack building and he'll then repay me by refusing to put together any furniture ever again

steppemum Wed 27-May-15 18:26:24

I think that it is really solid - as long as you don't take it apart when you move.

That was the destruction point for ours.

wowfudge Thu 28-May-15 11:57:43

IKEA advise you to tighten up the screws on their stuff periodically too to keep it solid.

Naoko Thu 28-May-15 12:36:54

I have two wardrobes from Tesco that were only £99 each, more than five years ago. I've moved house with them once and the only damage is a little nick in the veneer where I bashed them into something during the move. The drawers on the matching chests of drawers are a little wobbly but that's because I'm incompetent and didn't put them together very well.

I also have lots of flatpack book- and cd cases, anywhere between 12 and 5 years old, all of which are in perfect condition. And some of those have been moved as many as 6 times. My dad built most of those, which is why they're never coming apart again grin

Ikea stuff is pretty good in my experience. Build it well and take a little bit of care, should last ages.

prepperpig Thu 28-May-15 14:08:16

Well to update, I've avoided the flat pack. I found a great solid mahogany desk on ebay for less than £100, very 1980s but will work well with the room (he already has a dark wooden headboard). It's being delivered tomorrow. I also found 1980s bedside cabinets that match for £60! His flat pack wardrobe is still in good condition so that will stay for now. I'm now on the hunt for a 1980s chest of drawers. Shouldn't be too difficult since everyone else is ditching this style of furniture if ebay is anything to go by.

The room is white and navy and the dark wooden furniture should look great.

Fleecyleesy Thu 28-May-15 14:29:41

You have to be careful what you buy. As a rule, I think Argos flat packs are poor quality. Ditto homebase, a lot of overlapping rubbish flimsy stuff. I have one argos flat pack item still going.

Ikea however is my favourite for flat packs and every room in my house has ikea stuff. If you look carefully at it before you buy it and make sure that it is sturdy/well made etc then it will last a very long time, well over a decade (still going). Their crapper items will break within a few years. It's not always easy to tell by the price either. I usually buy stuff that is mid price in ikea.

I have an ektorp sofa - jumped on for a decade, perfect condition apart from the leaky pen marks the kids have done! Dd's ikea bed will be given/sold once outgrown - perfect condition still. Chairs generally good - had them ages, since before kids born, taken plenty of everyday use. Billy bookshelves - cheap but seem to be lasting well in both kids' rooms.

wowfudge Thu 28-May-15 19:00:58

Argos and Homebase are owned by the same company and sell a lot of the same stuff.

vienaa Sun 31-May-15 07:18:09

DD bedroom furniture from Argos, 4 years old still doing well
DS bedroom furniture from MFI 8 years old, just one of the bottom panels of the draws OH had to repair it and using some kind of metal thing to hold it together better
Our furniture from Harvey's 8 years old all the bottom panels of the draws had to be fixed as they came out...

All of the outsides still look new..

Fairylea Sun 31-May-15 07:26:36

Wow. I must be very crap at building flat packs... Our stuff only lasts about 4-5 years before it starts falling apart and looking shabby. blush

missqwerty Mon 01-Jun-15 20:33:21

All my veneer stuff is fine. I would say never buy a desk or dining table in iy though. £200 dining table didn't even last me 2 years!

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