6 warnings to buyers from IKEA employees

If you’ve had to decorate a house or apartment at some point in your life, there’s a good chance you’ve used IKEA to get the job done. The Swedish company has 474 locations in 64 markets, making it a truly global icon when it comes to home furnishings. IKEA pieces are suitable for everything from college dorms to fancy homes. Many shoppers return for the relatively low prices on well-designed pieces – even if some claim the experience can damage a relationship. But there are still a few things about the DIY furniture company that you might want to know before your next visit. Read on to see what warnings IKEA employees have for shoppers.

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Stores use tricks to get you to buy certain items.

Unsurprisingly, all forms of marketing involve at least some form of manipulation. But while some companies use jingles to stay top of your mind or convince you that your life won’t be complete without their wares, IKEA employs a different kind of tactic that you’ve no doubt seen when shopping in their stores – probably without even realizing it.

While those large piles or overflowing boxes of products spaced sporadically around the showroom might seem like an organizational necessity, employees point out that this display method is actually a ploy to subconsciously convince you to buy them. In a 2011 interview with the new yorkerstore manager martin albrecht said it is based on a concept known as “bulla bulla”, which is the theory that products placed in huge piles will give shoppers the idea that they are overavailable and therefore much more affordable – no matter how much they actually cost . Just make sure you truth need these tea lights before checking out.


You may be leaving the store unprepared.

The only thing more agonizing than struggling to assemble a piece of IKEA furniture is getting close to the end of a long construction process and discovering that an essential screw is missing. But while you can’t count every piece before you leave the store, you can set yourself up for success by making an extra stop on your way out the door.

“One thing to keep in mind about screws is that we always have extras you can buy,” IKEA employee SteveUnicorn said in an AMA thread on Reddit. “Almost any piece of hardware can be found near returns.”

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Certain items will always be more expensive.

Part of IKEA’s undeniable allure is the fact that it offers some fantastic furniture options that fit budgets big and small. Sadly, however, there are some products that never seem like a decent bargain – especially when it comes to how to outfit a specific room in your home.

🇧🇷[The kitchen splashbacks] they’re the only products in the entire store that are custom-made by a third-party factory,” IKEA employee IKEAthrowaway explained in a Reddit AMA discussing the company’s secrets. “Everything else is mass-produced, so the price difference can be really big.”


There are some items that you definitely cannot return.

Some shoppers may be surprised to discover that you’re not necessarily stuck with every IKEA product you can take home. This might even be true for items you’ve started putting together, as long as you’re within a specific time frame. However, employees warn that customers cannot exchange some products after leaving the store.

“IKEA is pretty lax with their return policy. The only thing they absolutely won’t take back is the bedding. Absolutely nothing,” explained IKEA employee thaiangel9008 in a Reddit AMA.

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You are missing an important step during furniture assembly.

IKEA furniture can make even the most skilled carpenters feel helpless with its occasionally complicated instructions. But no matter how skilled you are at furniture construction, employees warn that there’s likely an essential step you might be missing as you open up the boxes and start hammering.

“A great trick is to build [the furniture] on the mat. It shows it in the directions, but in all honesty, it helps,” explained IKEA employee NickNac113 in a Reddit AMA. “All of our electric construction tables have carpet stapled to them.”


You are buying the wrong products.

Anyone who has spent hours perusing IKEA’s seemingly endless showrooms knows that there are multiple versions of most furniture items available for purchase. But experts point out that it might be worth doing a little research at home or using your cell phone in the store to make sure you’re getting a top-of-the-line option.

In a TikTok video posted on Oct. 7, user diywithkb says that you can avoid more fragile items by omitting certain products from your potential purchase pool. “Search the site based on material. Solid wood items tend to be much more durable,” he points out. “They can also be painted, so they make your DIY projects a lot easier.”

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