Finding cheap office chairs isn't just a matter of saving money, it's also a matter of finding a product that will last for several years and, ultimately, keep the person sitting in it comfortable. After all, saving a few buck on a cheap office chair doesn't do much good if the person sitting in it doesn't work efficiently on account of improper body support or an ineffective overal design.
Where To Find Cheap Office Chairs
There are several online retailers offering great budget chairs, and the best part is that most of them include user ratings, which means you can actually get real-life reviews by people who actually bought them, not just the high-pressure sales copy and catchy headlines of a site dedicated to making sales. Ideally, you'll want to disregard any office chairs that carry an overal negative rating even if the price is super low. In many instances, people purchase products because of a low price tag, only to realize the product, well, sucks.
Why not use these peoples' experiences to your advantage? There's no point in reinventing the wheel, learn from those who have already walked down that path. If an office chair carries a great overall rating, it might be worth further research, but if it carries an overall bad rating, you might want to proceed with caution.
That's not to say that you can't find cheap office chairs offline. Most cities and towns have at least one or two office supply stores, which usually carry these kinds of products. The advantage to not buying chairs on the Internet is that you can try it out before you buy it. You can sit in it, feel how it adjusts to your body, learn how the adjustment mechanism work and even get an overal 'feel' for the construction. You can't do that online. However, you can check them out offline, then look for a great deal online once you know what product(s) you like.
Buying Cheap Office Chairs Used
If you want an even better deal, you might be able to find a used office chair for a fraction of the price of buying new. Often times, people replace office furniture, such as office chairs, for asthetic reasons - meaning the "replaced" items are still of considerable quality.
There are many ways to do this, starting with auction sites like eBay - just make sure to do your homework on the seller, and take necessary precautions with online transactions.
Another solution is to look through your local newspaper's classified pages. In many instances, businesses or even individuals will post their old office furniture in these pages. If you already have a subscription, take a few minutes to browse for great deals every morning, you might be surprised at how cheap you can find what you're looking for.
And don't forget thrift shops and consignment stores. Don't fall for the trap that these stores only stock junk, because it's simply not true. Many people donate quality items to these places because of certain tax advantages. That means you can find some killer deals on hardly-used products. I know one man who replaced his entire office decor, which meant new desks, chairs and other furniture for himself and his dozen or so employees, then donated all the "old" stuff to a local charity-based thrift shop. He said the tax advantages actually put more money in his pocket at the end of the year than trying to sell them personally. Later, the office chairs he paid almost $500 for just a year or two earlier were priced at about $40, which meant that many savvy shoppers went home with some great merchandise at rock bottom prices.
What To Look For In A Cheap Office Chair
Like I said earlier, saving money isn't the only variable in your search. Ideally, you want an office chair that's comfortable, well-built and condusive to the office environment. So how do you know what to look for? The best solution is to try out as many office chairs as you can, note which ones you like, then look around for a great deal on that particular make and model.
Another reason why it's nice to "try before you buy" is that many off-brands will model lower-priced units after the more expensive chairs. And in many instances, the knock-off is just as good as the original, but costs considerably less.
In my opinion, saving a few dollars on anything that won't last very long isn't worth it. Do as much research as you can on the expected life span of any product you're considering buying. For instance, if you find a great deal on a comfortable office chair that people say will break within the year, that saving $50 over a better-rated unit probably isn't worth it, especially if the more expensive one will last for years.
Cheap Office Chair Shopping
As you start shopping for a cheap office chair, keep a couple of things in mind, such as the overall "style" you're looking for, the color scheme of the office and your personal comfort preferences.
Most companies make office chairs in the usual "industrial" colors: Black, brown, blue and grey. But many offer even more color options, such as red, greed, yellow, purple and orange. If a color like this would compliment your office style (and perhaps your personality), then check them out. I've sat in a few radically colored chairs and can say that they were very comfortable and seemed very solidly built; so don't think that a crazy color masks an inferrior product.
For many years, office chair manufacturers have built their products with a minimum of five legs. This makes it much more difficult for the chair to flip or tip over, even when the person sitting in it leans back to extreme angles. Even though you might find some old four-legged units on the market, I'd highly advise against them, they are too dangerous.
As long as you know where to look and how to shop, you should have no problem finding cheap office chairs.