Consuming Less by Buying Used

Consuming Less by Buying Used

Heather Blaha
Jul 10, 2007
Today's email blast from A Fresh Squeeze, gave some good reminders about how a simple thing like buying used rather than new is one way of living green: Buying used not only reduces demand for raw materials, it also cuts down on the energy costs associated with production and transportation. There’s an added reason to buy used furniture from flea markets. Manufactured lumber, such as plywood and particleboard, often contain adhesives that off-gas VOCs into your home. Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs) have been linked to several negative health effects. Our parents were just here over the weekend, and they were asking about all of our stuff. We realized that the only "new" piece we own is an IKEA shelving unit that was missing a drawer (so, in the "damaged products" section - a great deal). We actually preferred it with one less drawer, as it now is used as a shelf that houses our DVD player and cable box. Everything else in our home was handmade, scored from craigslist, garage sales, flea markets, dumpster diving, or came to us as family and friend hand-me-downs. We know it's not for everyone, but we love re-using stuff like this. A few of A Fresh Squeeze's suggestions for hunting: Chicago Antique Market Wolff's Flea Market Rosemont The New Maxwell Street Market Thoughts on these three suggestions? Any other favorite flea markets? What's your top go-to spot for secondhand finds?
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