Furniture and Home Furnishings stores have had quite a wild ride over the last few years. With this industry tied to the fate of home sales and housing starts, there is no doubt that furniture retailers are "swinging hard". Many stores are now promoting sales and savings of 50 to 80% off. Is this true? What has always been a challenge for the furniture shopper is even more challenging today? The real key is to ignore the savings claims and begin by comparing quality features. Of course the other aspect of finding a good deal rests in your needs. There is truth to the adage, "you get what you pay for". Do your research by asking questions of yourself and your family. How do you plan to use the furniture? Is it form or function? In other words, is this a piece that will simply sit in your "living room" for show or is it a piece that will be used everyday. Furniture is an investment. Do your homework as to your needs and do not be fooled by the hype of advertising. It is kind of like the "side show" at the circus. Some one entices you in with promises of exotic or unique entertainment. The proof is in the performance.