Most people’s buying decisions are made upon careful consideration. Especially choosing and buying furniture requires much thought. If the item fits our needs it is not really as we have imagined it or our pockets are not deep enough. Even though it may sound like a more expensive option, people tend to buy online and import furniture from abroad to save time and cut costs. Most manufacturers, sellers, and suppliers strike deals that pay off to a regular buyer.  Don’t worry, you don’t have to be moving to Dubai with kids in order to buy some furniture from there. So, why don’t you get that perfect piece and save?

How to buy furniture from abroad?

If you are furnishing your new apartment or got the idea for a spare room in your home, you are likely intent on purchasing the most affordable furniture that suits your taste. Local manufacturers may not offer what you have in mind or they may be too expensive. However, most foreign shops have extended their reach with the help of the internet and e-commerce and can afford to offer discounts or even free shipping. How to benefit from those deals?

Cross-border shopping

For those lucky to travel often or live in border towns, shopping location has been a matter of choice and convenience. For Canadians, cross-border shopping is not a new concept. Quite often, furniture prices in the USA are more favorable to those in Canada and shopping worth of a trip. If you add to it annual discounts like Black Friday and the fact that there is no duty for goods imported from the USA to Canada, this feels like a sound option. You might even buy and import furniture from abroad while remodeling your home.

Shopping directly from the manufacturer’s webshop

You can safely purchase furniture directly from a well-known manufacturer who is also a seller. However, if this is a foreign manufacturer, you will bear the cost of delivery, import fee, and any additional local tax. It is a good idea to hire a customs broker if your order is more expensive. Also, professionals like those from know import and export regulations well. They will communicate on your behalf between the manufacturer and your country’s customs office.

It has never been easier to buy and import furniture from abroad with the help of online shopping platforms.

Reputable manufacturers, sellers, and online shopping platforms have raised standards in data protection. Customers can freely use their personal and payment information on these secure platforms.

However, the most important matter you should focus on during online shopping is the safety of your personal information. That is why we stress the importance of purchasing from well-known sellers or manufacturers. If you wish to buy from a less-known webshop browse their ratings and reviews and get acquainted with their policies first.

Purchase from a re-seller or platform for online shopping

Buying through an e-commerce platform is the most simple way to purchase furniture nowadays. Even the transportation process can be stress-free because the platform is taking care of everything for you. The most popular platforms in the world have a priority to protect your payment data and personal information but you should browse and compare the prices and delivery fees. There is a difference in price and policies if a third-party merchant on the platform sells and ships the product.

Add-to-cart key is instead of Enter key on a keyboard.

When buying furniture from abroad, make sure you carefully revise the item price, delivery fee, and the seller policies before you hit the Buy button.

How to import furniture from abroad?

Whatever you’re importing, you are responsible for the goods. You would need to report the items and declare the value for customs duty. Additionally, you need to make sure the destination country allows the import of the goods you wish to buy. The endangered status of specific sorts of wood, for example, makes furniture made of it illegal. Always consult the official government trade authorities before you make a purchase or import furniture. Once it is clear that your furniture is not on the list of restricted goods, you can dedicate your time to the import procedures.

Bringing furniture to the customs

To import furniture, you need to fill out the required forms. The best course of action is to call your local customs office first. Inform them of the furniture import you plan and inquire about the procedure, restrictions, forms, and taxes. Once you get to the border, you should have all the forms filled out and ready and enough money to cover the fees.

Those who are living in a small town in Canada close to the border with the USA have another option. You can order the furniture online and pick it up in a nearby US town. There are even websites that help you find a US shipping address for your order for a small fee.

Importing furniture directly from the manufacturer

If you purchase from a manufacturer abroad, you must cover the import expenses and provide the required documentation. That is also one of the money-saving tips. You can try to calculate the import fee before you place your order using an online calculator or call the customs office. Note that the fees may change often and thus the amount may vary slightly. Once your furniture enters customs clearance, they will inform you of the price you should pay (and any additional document needed) to import your item.

A man is calculating his import fees for buying furniture from abroad

The only way to be certain about the number of import fees and taxes for a specific category and type of product is to contact the local authorities and inquire.

For example, Canadian citizens have certain duty-free limits upon which they need to pay for imports. Additionally, they are required to pay GST and HST/PST where agreements between the Federal and Provincial governments exist. Specifically for furniture import, Canadians don’t pay duty if they import from the USA, but pay an 8% fee if they import it from other countries. Also, they pay 5% GST (Goods and Sales Tax) and HST/PST where the abovementioned agreements exist.

Purchasing furniture from abroad through an online shopping platform

Globally present shopping platforms have taken import fees into account and made shopping easier for their customers. The leader among them, Amazon, calculates an import fee deposit and adds it to the price of your furniture from abroad. If the import fee is lower than estimated, they reimburse the customer. If it’s higher, the platform covers the difference. Also, their network takes care of documentation. However, your country’s customs office may ask you to provide additional documents if they deem it necessary.