MoveLoot takes the biggest headache out of buying and selling second-hand furniture: getting it from one place to another. The site works just like Craigslist (only prettier) or eBay (only less auction-y), only MoveLoot itself takes care of listing and selling your furniture, and when it’s sold, it also takes care of pickup and delivery.
The buying and selling parts are separated. As a seller, you contact MoveLoot, and someone comes to pick up your stuff. They even disassemble and pack it for transport, while you “get to sit back and relax.” MoveLoot then takes photos of your furniture and lists it. If and when it’s sold, you get your money, less MoveLoot’s (hefty) 50% cut.
Buyers have it just as easy. You browse the site, which is helpfully split into sections (sofas, office and so on) and sub categories (love seats, trunks, etc.). It works just like any other shopping site. Once you’ve placed an order, you arrange a delivery time and MoveLoot brings your “new” furniture. Because there’s no way to see the goods before you buy, you can inspect the delivery when it arrives, and if you don’t like it, you can send it back for free.
There are disadvantages. The most obvious is the 50% cut the company takes form the sale price, but for that you get to walk away from all responsibility. The real “problem” is that your furniture is vetted first. “We have standard processes for vetting furniture to make sure it meets our bar for quality and style,” says the company. Whereas you can toss any old junk up on Craigslist and hope that somebody bites, with MoveLoot you can only sell quality gear. Or rather, you can only submit furniture that MoveLoot thinks it can sell.
For the buyer, the advantages are many. The photos are well lit and look great. They’re also consistent, shot on a white background (although the resolution is kind of low). And you don’t have to travel half way across town just to find out that one of the legs on that perfect-looking table is shorter than the rest, or that that beautiful chaise lounge stinks of dog.
MoveLoot currently operates on both the East and West Coasts (although the company won’t ship from one side to the other). You can find it in the SF Bay Area, LA, New York, Raleigh-Durham, Charlotte and Atlanta. If it can keep people from throwing out and buying more stuff, then everyone wins.