Buying furniture online is a relatively new trend in Kenya. For most people, possibly even you, the thought of buying furniture is quickly followed by plans to visit a physical furniture shop. Although more people have come to embrace online shopping, there’s no denying that the practice of visiting a furniture shop is here to stay.
You want to see and feel the product before making the crucial decision of parting with your money, right? Well, just before you do that, we have a few tips you need to pack as you head to that showroom or furniture store in Nairobi.
Why Visit A Furniture Store in Nairobi?
From what our clients tell us, these are some of the reasons you’d want to visit a showroom:
1. See and feel the real thing
One of the main reasons why most shoppers visit a furniture showroom is to confirm whether the product they saw online is similar to the real thing. You know what they say: seeing is believing.
There are also some unique decisions that would require you to visit a furniture store. A good example is choosing your best sofa fabric or the right firmness. Rather than speculate, you’ll get to feel the fabric texture or firmness you actually like during your visit.
2. Talk to a sales assistant
Sales assistants are a crucial part of your purchase process. Having a face-to-face chat with them helps to address your concerns in real-time. They can also offer extra advice on issues you may not even have thought about.
If you happen to walk into one of our MoKo showrooms, you can also expect to have a smiley conversation with one of our agents that will make your day. They’ve even earned themselves the nickname: MoKo Heart-warmers.
3. Get more furnishing ideas
Furniture showrooms will often have well-designed set-ups from which you can borrow interior décor ideas. Something as simple as where to place your sofa can make a big difference for your home. You could also spot an accessory that would look great in your house as well.
4. Take advantage of everything they have to offer
Furniture stores are often one-stop solutions for all your furnishing needs. Once you walk in, you can easily shop for any complimentary items that you would eventually need.
For example, most shoppers walk into our showrooms looking for mattresses but they don’t have a bedside table either. Since we offer options such as poufs and c-tables, they are able to buy all these items at once.
Tips For Choosing The Best Furniture Store
Furniture shops are popping up in a town near you every now and then. If you ask any of them, they’ll claim to be the best in the business. If you ask us right now, we’ll give you the same answer too. But how can you really spot the best one when there are so many options to choose from? These four questions will lead you to the right answer.
1. Does the furniture match your style?
There’s a furniture dealer out there that serves your needs whether you’re looking for modern or antique furniture; second-hand or new; made in Kenya or imported. A simple look at various furniture dealers’ social media pages or websites will tell you which ones match your style and which ones don’t. Avoid the latter.
2. Are their prices within your budget?
Once you’ve settled on a few that match the style you’re going for, rule out those that don’t match your budget. As with the previous question, this question is very personal because what is affordable to one person may be too cheap or too expensive for someone else. Once you answer it, move on to the next one.
3. Who can vouch for them?
Thanks to the power of online reviews, finding a reputable furniture store is super easy nowadays. Some incredible resources that will come in handy here include Google reviews and Facebook reviews. You can also ask your friends or your connections on any social media platform if they can vouch for the furniture shop you’d like to visit.
4. What are their delivery policies?
“Do you deliver” is one of the most common questions our clients ask us. As you know, MoKo offers free delivery within Nairobi. Unfortunately, very few other stores offer free delivery. It’s important to understand what delivery policies your preferred furniture store offers so that you can decide whether or not they work for you.
How to Tell the Difference Between Bad and Good Quality Furniture
At this point, you have already settled on the furniture shop(s) you would like to visit. A fresh dilemma then presents itself: how will you spot good quality furniture?
1. Inspect the frame, especially joints
First and foremost, ensure that the furniture is not wobbly. This is the quickest sign of poor quality furniture you can spot. For example, if it’s a sofa, sit on it and wiggle or bounce a little. Any wobbling or creaking sounds should be a red flag.
Next, inspect the joints. Good quality furniture will have screwed or dowelled joints. Don’t worry if any of this sounds like Greek. The images below offer some explanation.
Lower quality furniture, on the other hand, will often have joints that are stapled, nailed or bear visible glue. These materials are easily susceptible to regular wear and tear hence reducing the lifespan of your furniture.
2. Ask what material the product is made from
Different types of woodwork well for different parts of your furniture. On exposed surfaces such as tabletops, look out for wood that is reasonably scratch-resistant. You can test this by attempting to draw a thin line across the wood with your fingernail. If it makes a visible dent, the wood will not withstand much wear and tear. This will especially prove to be a problem if you have playful kids or pets.
When it comes to the structure of the product, any kind of solid wood or sturdy plywood will serve you well. If it’s plywood, look for at least eight layers. Often, veneers – a thin piece of premium hardwood covering a lower-quality piece of wood – are used even in very high-quality furniture.
As long as the base piece is solid wood or plywood, veneers work well to give the furniture a beautiful finish. MoKo’s Baluni c-table and coffee table are great examples of this.
3. Check the wood for knots, even on unexposed pieces
Knots are visible imperfections in the wood grain that are circular and darker than the surrounding area (see the image below). Some woods are ‘knottier’ than others, and therefore less desirable since knots are susceptible to cracks. A good rule of thumb is to avoid furniture with knots around glued sections or slender pieces that offer support such as the legs.
This is not to say that you should avoid knots altogether. In fact, most people find the curves and bends in the wood grain that makes knots to be quite artistic and attractive to view. Hence you’ll find that many consumers enjoy having decorative wood with knots.
Where Are MoKo Furniture Shops Located?
You are now equipped with the tools, tips and tricks you need to find the best furniture shop near you. We’re out here crossing fingers that MoKo furniture shops checked most if not all your boxes and you can’t wait to visit one of our locations:
1. Greenspan mall, Donholm – https://goo.gl/maps/EZLGmDQpLwawjyR69
2. The Point Mall, Buruburu – https://goo.gl/maps/tFBSR6cYqKSmQm8h6
3. Capital Centre, Mombasa road – https://goo.gl/maps/S83pYgS1C4uVHi2A7
We even dropped you the pin so now you have no reason not to visit us. One of our smiley Heartwarmers will be eagerly waiting to receive you. See you soon!
If any of these locations are a little far from you, call/Whatsapp us on 0701 61 61 61 to find out if we have a MoKo pop-up stations in a town near you.