How to Flip Any Piece of Used Furniture


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There are great ways to save money while trying to furnish your home. Going to a furniture store and purchasing a dresser could easily cost $800-$1500. Over the last year my husband and I have been mastering how to flip used furniture. You can use the furniture you already own or purchase a “new” used piece. I have had a lot of luck finding cool things to flip on craigslist, and facebook garage sale sites.

Because I love you guys, I have created a free checklist and supply list. That way you don’t have to keep pulling my post up to check for supplies and steps. I’m awesome, I know. I just want to make you’re life a little easier! Keep reading and I’ll have that place at the bottom of the page to get your own PDF of the checklist.

Before you purchase anything new there are a few things you will need to consider.

  1. Condition- Did a dog chew on the dresser leg? Is there a large gouge that is missing from the front of the drawer? Things like this make it very hard to fix. I usually pass on pieces that have this type of damage. Also, is it solid wood or compressed board? These also affect the value of the piece.
  2. Price- Everyone will have a different budget, but for me, I usually don’t pay more that $75 for anything I’m flipping. That’s because I am usually flipping the piece for re-sale and need to have room for profit. So your price point will depend on whether you are selling or keeping the piece.
  3. Amount of time it will need- We used to flip dining room tables and chairs but they take so much time. We would have to paint and reupholster the chairs, paint the table base and usually make a new table top. It wasn’t worth the time for us. We are slowly getting away from these types of flips if we are not planning to keep the piece for our home. Dressers are easy flips, usually.

We paid $40 dollars for this solid wood dresser. As you can see, it needed some TLC.


(Don’t mind the mess in our garage, there are other projects in the back)

There are three important tools that you will need to start.

  1. A good chalk paint. A lot of people really like the Annie Sloan chalk paint. I have never personally tried this paint because no one in my town sells it. But I have tried pretty much every other kind and I have finally found my favorite brand of chalk paint. It’s Rustoleum Chalk Paint. Its creamy, well pigmented, leaves a smooth finish, and goes a very long way. This is a VERY large dresser and it took about 1/3 of a can. You can find the paint here.
  2. A Chalk paint brush/wax brush. Most people buy a double pack, something similar to this, but I only use one brush, and wash it after I’m done with the paint and use it for the wax too. WARNING– If you choose to only use one brush instead of buying two it will take forever to wash the wax out.
  3. A finishing wax. There are several different options, there are a lot of people who like the Annie Sloan wax. Again, I have not tried her finishing wax, I have tried several other brands and my favorite type is Waverly Clear Wax. (I cant find an amazon link to it, it’s sad I know) But I also really like Minwax Finishing Paste. With the Minwax you can finish chalk paint AND wood. Get that here. #Update– I have recently been finishing my chalk paint with a water based poly and I LOVE it. The wax still works well but the spray poly gives it a satin finish that makes it look SOOO good.

Step one– Fix any structural damage and clean the piece of furniture. This dresser needed new drawer glides, we went and picked some new ones up at Menard’s and installed them.

Step two– First coat of chalk paint. When using chalk paint there is *usually* no need to sand your project first. It will be light and look like it wont cover, but it will after another coat. The only time I need to sand is if there is a bubble of paint or veneer peeling. This is rare, but I like to keep sand paper on hand just in case.


Step three– Second coat/third coat of paint.

Step four- Wax the dresser AFTER the paint has cured overnight. *You can also use a spray poly to finish the dresser but make sure that it is water based. If you buy a oil based poly it will yellow with time*

Step five– Spray paint the hardware and re-install them. For this particular piece we used a basic white spray paint.

Don’t forget to that down at the bottom of this post there is a place to get a free PDF of all the steps and a supply checklist. This will make it easy when you go shopping for supplies and you wont have to pull my post up a million times to check the steps while you’re working.

Finished project–

IMG_5186 IMG_5188 IMG_5189


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  1. The liece turned out beautiful! I have wanted to do this for so long but haven’t had time. One day i will and i will love every minute of it. Everything deserves a second chance. I love tge color you chose.

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