Furnishing And Decor For Your Expat European Home – Get Style And Save Money

Moving from the UK to a new home overseas is an exciting prospect but with many practical challenges and often some barriers. Purchasing or building a new home is one of the biggest challenges and as a result the question of furnishing and decor is often left as an after thought. But if you think about furniture, curtains, blinds, rugs, bedding and so on as part of your overall plan you can transform your new property into your new home.

It is true that you can wait till you are in residence before you start searching local stores for the necessary furnishings. This undoubtedly will allow you to furnish in a similar manner to other local homes, but you will be less familiar with local sources and it may take time and some style errors before you manage to complete the interior decor of your home to your satisfaction.

We’d always suggest that you should immerse yourself in the local environment and community, but when it comes to furnishing and décor you can get the style you want and save money if you source items in the UK and then export it you your new home.

Saving Money

You’ll find that shopping in the UK is now often much cheaper than on the Continent. Particularly with the parlous state of the £ versus the Euro and significant VAT differentials you can find designer fabrics and home accessories considerably cheaper in the UK. If you buy in the UK and export to the EU you will pay UK VAT of 17.5% instead of local VAT which could be as much as 25.5%!

It’s often worth making a dedicated trip back to the UK in order to make big savings. Some expats will fill a hired van in the UK with everything needed in their holiday rental property or their own “home from home”. Since the UK is part of the EU (unlike the Channel Islands or Gibraltar) you won’t have problems with import duty to another EU country. Goods can also be shipped safely with international couriers like FedEx, UPS & DHL.

If your home is outside the UK you’ll benefit from VAT free exports – though you need to take care of local import taxes. But the retail price differentials between the UK and, for example, Dubai, the Algarve, the Côte d’Azur, easily outweigh the cost of transportation & importation.

Buying British

Many brands that are available in the UK are just not easily available overseas. So if you are seeking familiarity or exclusivity and an affordable solution then it makes sense to source in the UK. For example many designer curtain fabrics are 50% cheaper in the UK than in Europe.

Choice

Depending on the location of your new home, you find that you may have very limited choice when it comes to furnishings for your new home. In major cosmopolitan cities you should be spoiled for choice but otherwise you’ll find that Britain offers some of the widest choice at all levels of budget. So if your new overseas home is in rural Brittany, for example, if you want the best possible choice you could go to Paris or you could source from Britain; which would be easier?

English Spoken Here

Have you tried explaining the subtleties of your favourite fabric or paint colour in the local language? Unlike ordering a meal in a restaurant, it’s not a subject covered in many phrase books. Unless you are a linguist, you can avoid misunderstandings by using a British interior designer and supplier.

Peace Of Mind

You can deal with many suppliers in the UK who have experience of supplying goods and services to expats. Look for companies who have experience of making up goods to your specification (e.g. curtains) at a distance. Make sure they can project manage a whole house if you are refurbishing your home or furnishing your home for the first time. And of course check that they can arrange safe delivery. The right company will help you transform your overseas property into a stylish and desirable home whilst saving you time and money.

Furnishing and Organizing Your Garden Shed

So, you just finished building a beautiful garden shed for your backyard and are now ready to move in all your gardening implements before the cold weather arrives. How should you best organize the garden shed so that you can enjoy and use the space most effectively? Here are some great ideas to help you furnish and organize your new (or old) garden shed.

1) For seeds, create or purchase a seed box. Nothing is more frustrating come early spring having to go through piles of disorganized seed packets. Take advantage of end of the year rummage sales and flea markets to find a nice galvanized steel box that you can use as a seed box. Or, look online at popular garden retailers. You should be able to find a suitable seed box for well under $20, and it will be worth every penny you pay.

2) You can never have enough containers. Well, maybe you can, but your garden shed is a great place to store some beautiful ceramic or pottery containers (skip the plastic ones, if you can). Since many garden supply shops have great discounts on these in the fall, try to snap up at least a few if you can. You will not regret it.

3) Install pegs and hooks, all over. You will greatly appreciate having hooks on the walls of your garden shed to hang everything, from gardening tools, to gloves, hats, smocks and much, much more.

4) Get some wicker baskets. If you are a gardener, you know how useful these can be to collect produce and flowers. These are another one of those items that you will seem never to have enough of in your shed, so stock up now if you can. Thrift stores are often a great place to get good deals on used wicker baskets, often for under $1 each.

5) A potting bench. If you take your gardening seriously, then your shed will be a great place to put a potting bench. The compartments on the bench will help you further organize items in your shed, and it will make the time spent in your garden shed much more enjoyable.

6) Shelving. If you can find some beautiful salvaged shelving, it will add even more character to your garden shed. Or, if you are handy with a hammer, you can try building your own shelves to specification, to ensure they fit your new shed perfectly.

What You Should Keep in Mind When Selecting Office Furniture and Supplies

Finding the right way to outfit your new office can be a very large and daunting task. With all of the different office furniture suppliers around, all claiming that their furniture is the best for you, it can be an even more difficult task. It’s your job to make sure that not only do you get the best possible deal, but you find the right, quality furniture that will be both durable and long lasting.

It’s easy to overdo your new office and spend much more money than is necessary trying to make it look lush or homey. That is why one of the most important questions you should ask yourself when purchasing your new office furniture is “What is the primary purpose of this furniture?” Office furniture does not have to look fancy or bring to mind sweet memories of home. Its main purpose is to be practical, durable, and reliable. An example of this idea can be found in Safco Executive Chairs, which emphasizes all three of these Ideals. Sound expensive? It doesn’t have to be.

It is easy to find low cost office furniture and supplies that will not only fit the office setting, but your budget, as well. After all, there is no need to spend extra money at another store when you can get better quality, longer lasting office furniture with us.

Unfortunately, it’s also easy to over spend trying to keep up with appearances. You should keep in mind that this is furniture for an office, not a home. An office should have simplistic furnishings. A chair should be a comfortable but professional computer chair, not a super-comfortable recliner. A desk should be able to accommodate all of the necessities (monitor, computer, printer, so on), allowing for a small amount of space for personal affects. It does not need to be a glorious oak masterpiece to be admired and handed down for generations.

Filing cabinets and overhead cabinets do not have to be elaborate or “cool”. They simply need to plain and accommodating. The same things can be said about office supplies. Whether you’re looking for post-it notes or fine business envelopes, quality should be your top consideration not the items price. Do they look professional? Do they have enough space? Do they get the job done? Those are the things that matter.

Do not misread the situation. Just because you don’t have to spend a lot of money and keep things simple and professional does not mean that you will end up with junk items. Buying affordable office furniture and supplies just means that you have good, common sense and a wise way of spending money. There are many suppliers that specialize in office appropriate furniture.

Professionalism is important in an office setting, and that’s what office furniture should inspire. It should provide an atmosphere that allows an appropriate amount of comfort for a workplace setting, clean and orderly conduct, and focus on organization. This is very different from the way we choose our home furniture, which we tend to fit around us – our comforts, our likes, our personal identities – which promote relaxation and a laid back atmosphere.