Flipping a Trash Buffet

Written by Jessica Mitchel

I've been flipping furniture for profit for over eight months. I like to share all of the tips, tricks, and learning lessons along the way.

May 24, 2022

This trash buffet could give me a potential profit of $150.

I was so happy when I found this buffet out for trash several weeks ago. Other than some minor cosmetic fixes, this piece was in great shape when I found it.

I started off by cleaning the piece and filling in some missing corners and other areas on the top with Kwikwood. I also decided to switch from the original handles on the top drawer to knobs.

This top drawer is actually a bit deceiving. From the front, it looks like three separate drawers, but it’s actually one drawer.

The next debate was what to do with the fronts of the doors. I was having trouble deciding if i should try to pry off the fronts or just fill in the original carvings. So, I went to instagram and put up a poll. It was pretty close, but the majority voted for filling in the carvings.

I filled in the carvings with kwikwood. For things like this, I prefer kwikwood over wood filler because I find it holds up better than traditional woodfiller. I prefer traditional wood filler for more simple scratches in pieces.

Next step is sanding. I was pretty sure the top was laminate, but I was still hoping I might luck out with veneer. However, the laminate was confirmed during sanding.

So I did a quick scuff sand over the piece and focused mostly on the fronts to make sure the kwikwood was even.

Before priming, I wiped the piece down with a damp microfiber cloth. So, I’ve been seeing a lot of flippers using a spray version of zinsser primer, so I decided to give it a try.

I can confirm- I’m not impressed. This bottle of pray primer was $12, which is a little pricey considering it didn’t go that far. I also had a huge issues with drips; something was definitely wrong with the spray tip, but I’m going to give it the benefit of the doubt and say I just got a bad can.

I was able to cover the entire piece with the can, but I use the whole can to cover it.

Unfortunately, after priming, I really noticed how much wood filler was missing from the carvings. So, I decided to go back, add more kwikwood and sand again.

I don’t think the Kwikwood stuck very well the first time because I didn’t give it enough time to dry. So, this time I let it dry overnight before sanding.

The second round of Kwikwood worked a lot better, so I went in and covered those areas with primer again- this time just with the regular can of primer and a brush.

The next step is paint! I’ve been discussing a lot lately about maximizing my profits as much as possible. One way of doing that is with paint. Normally, I use mineral paint, but it can be very expensive. For a piece of this size and with spray it, I would have needed to spend $32 on a can of paint.

So, instead, I got a can of paint from the mis-tint section at home depot that cost me $2. I decided to use my paint sprayer for this piece because of all of the special curves and edges- I wanted to make sure I got in all of the nooks and crannies well.

I was so surprised at how well the piece was covered after one coat of paint- it was so impressive! But, I missed some spots, so I did go in and do a second coat of paint.

I added poly to the remaining paint in my sprayer to complete the top coat. Even after all of that, I only used about 2/3 of this paint.

So, if you’ve been feeling pressured to buy the expensive paint, but aren’t sure about the price, using a cheaper can of paint will probably work just as well if not better. I was very impressed by this $2 can of paint.

I ended up needing to pick up some new handles for this buffet, so I went to home depot and picked up three knobs and two handles that I thought would match well. Because of the depth of the doors, the screws weren’t long enough.

Yes, I could have just gotten different screws, but instead, I took a drill bit that was slightly larger than the head of the screw and drilled about halfway into the existing screw hole. This allowed clearance for the screw head, allowing me to use the same screws for the handles.

Next, I measure out the center of each drawer and drilled out the three new knob holes. I screwed the knobs in place and this was the last step for this piece.

So here is the before and the after.

I was really unsure about just doing one color for this piece- you guys might have noticed by now that I love a good two-toned look. But between the laminate top and shape of the base, I decided it would be easier to just do one color.

The hardware and primer were the most expensive components of this piece. The hardware cost $16 and the primer cost $13. The rest of the expenses were relatively low. Paint was $2. I did use quite a bit of sand paper costing $5 and needed to use 1.5 tubes of Kwikwood, costing about $10. Overall, I spent about $50 flipping this piece.

Based on other listings in my area, I am going to list this piece for $200, which would give me a potential profit of $50. I will keep you posted on when this piece sells.

Supplies Used:

Disclaimer: Some of the links in this post are affiliate links. I will receive a small commission if you purchase. Thank you for your support!

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