Ikea will 'buy back' used furniture you no longer want

Marie Claire Dorking
·3 mins read

Watch: Bored of your Ikea furniture? They’ll buy it back.

Ikea is launching a ‘Buy Back’ scheme, which will see customers encouraged to return their unwanted furniture back to its stores in the UK and Ireland.

The furniture will then be made available to buy as second-hand items in the As-Is Area (previously known as Bargain Corner) in Ikea stores.

Anything that cannot be resold will be recycled or donated to local community projects, as part of a sustainability drive.

In exchange for “selling back” an item customers will receive an Ikea refund card to spend in store, which will have no expiry date.

Depending on the condition of the furniture traded in, the voucher could be worth as much as 50% of the original price.

Read more: Ribena trials paper straws on cartons in bid to reduce plastic waste

Ikea is launching a new buy back scheme. (Getty Images)
Ikea is launching a new buy back scheme. (Getty Images)

The Buy Back scheme is being introduced from 27 November, a date chosen to coincide with one of the busiest shopping periods of the year in the lead up to Black Friday.

Ikea hopes the initiative will help make sustainable living more simple and accessible for its customers.

“Sustainability is the defining issue of our time and Ikea is committed to being part of the solution to promote sustainable consumption and combat climate change,” explains Peter Jelkeby, country retail manager and chief sustainability officer for Ikea UK & Ireland.

“With the launch of Buy Back we are giving a second life to many more IKEA products and creating more easy and affordable solutions to help people live more sustainably.”

Products that are eligible for Buy Back include: dressers, office drawer cabinets; small structures with drawers; display storage and sideboards; bookcases and shelf units; small tables; multimedia furniture; cabinets; dining tables and desks; chairs and stools without upholstery; chests of drawers; children’s products excluding baby items and PAX accessories.

Watch: Ikea sees sales boosted amid lockdowns.

Here is what you can hope to get back in Ikea vouchers when you trade in old furniture:

* As new – no scratches: 50% of the original price

* Very good – minor scratches: 40% of original price

* Well-used – several scratches: 30% of original price

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The company has been testing out furniture reselling in Edinburgh and Glasgow for more than a year, according to BBC.

Ikea has been taking steps to become more environmentally friendly and says it aims to become “a fully circular and climate positive business by 2030”.

A circular business is one which reuses or recycles materials and products.

The scheme is part of Ikea's sustainability drive. (Getty Images)
The scheme is part of Ikea's sustainability drive. (Getty Images)

Hege Sæbjørnsen, country sustainability manager at Ikea UK & Ireland, added: “The Ikea vision has always been to create a better everyday life for the many people, which right now means making sustainable living easy and affordable for everyone.

“Being circular is a good business opportunity as well as a responsibility, and the climate crisis requires us all to radically rethink our consumption habits.

“Currently, 45% of total global carbon emissions come from the way the world produces and uses everyday products, so Buy Back represents an opportunity to address unsustainable consumption and its impact on climate change.”

Read more: Flushable sanitary pads are helping period products become more sustainable

Customers wanting to sell back their old Ikea furniture will need to visit Ikea.co.uk and submit items for consideration by filling out a simple online offer request.

The tool will automatically generate a preliminary offer and customers will then be invited to bring the fully assembled product and preliminary offer to the Returns & Exchanges desk in their nearest store, where they will then receive an Ikea refund card to spend in store.

Ikea states that the refund card will have no expiry date in order to encourage customers to only purchase new items when they really need something.

Ikea isn’t the only company trying to up their sustainability credentials. At select stores Homebase has introduced “green shopping aisles” full of products aimed to make homes more environmentally-friendly.

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