How to Import Furniture From China：Definitive Guide
May 16th, 2020
Furniture sellers nowadays are increasingly becoming aware of the vast opportunities of importing from China. You will find all types of furniture at discount costs that are significantly lower than retail costs. But for beginners how to buy from China still remains a big problem. In this article, we will help you to figure out how to import furniture from China.
Chapter 1 Why are people import furniture from China?
China is a major manufacturing base for various products found everywhere throughout the world. A large number of products we utilize each day come from China and furniture is one of them. Purchasing furniture from China gives you the option of saving your hard-earned money from paying for the different interests of the companies.
Let’s take a look at some of the most important factors for importing furniture from China.
a. Cheaper price
Buying furniture involves significant expenses. These expenses can greatly be reduced by purchasing and importing furniture from China at a discount rate. You should consider the possibility of going to purchase and import furniture from china because you will find that furniture costs are considerably lower compared to other countries.
b. Good quality and design
In 2004, China started to be the biggest exporter of furniture. China fabricates the greater part of the furniture of the main designers in the world. Furniture from China is kept away from the utilization of nails, screws, and glue. When made of top quality wood, the furniture can keep going for a considerable length of time. This manufacturing technique connects the various parts of the furniture without any visible joints making it look like the whole furniture was worked from only a single piece of wood.
c. The wide selection of furniture
Owing to the enormous number of furniture producers in China, there is a wide variety of designs available to suit various needs. There are almost 50,000 furniture manufacturers in China. You will find an astounding furniture market while sourcing from China. There is such a significant type of wonderful furniture for your choice.
Chapter 2 Where can we import furniture in China
There are 4 options available to import furniture from China, buying from the Chinese Furniture wholesale market, attending Chinese furniture fairs, sourcing furniture online, or selecting a furniture sourcing agent. Visiting China may include higher expenses as you have to incorporate the expenses of tickets, visas, lodging, etc. however, it gives you more authority over what you can see and purchase.
a. Go to Furniture wholesale market
There are various furniture markets and shopping centers in China. Numerous outlets offer modest furnishings for every need, however, the quality may be not up to the mark. If quality is essential to you, some of the best places to visit are as follows:
Shunde Wholesale Furniture Market
Shunde is situated in Foshan city and is widely recognized as the Furniture City and the Furniture Wholesale Market of China. In Shunde, you will find more than 1,500 producers of furniture and around 3,000 Chinese and worldwide furniture merchants.
Louvre Furniture Mall
The Louver furniture shopping center offers a wide assortment of top quality designer furniture at appealing costs. Every store in this mall offers extraordinary designs and the shopping center itself is a wonderful place to investigate. This shopping center is a fundamental hot spot for China’s furniture industry.
Red Star Machine Furniture Mall
Situated on the Wenshui Road in the Dadong District the Red Star Machine Furniture Mall exhibits many top furniture brands including Maiso, Beking, Landbond, and Natleer. These stores represent the most recent patterns in furniture. During the sale season, costs drop significantly allowing purchasers to save money.
b. Go to Exhibitions and Fairs
Exhibitions and fairs of furniture displays occur on a half-yearly basis. You might need to time your visit to match with these presentations. The most notable among them are:
China International Furniture Fair (CIFF)
This is China’s and probably the world’s greatest furniture exhibition. It is held two times per year; once in March and once in September. China International Furniture Fair (Guangzhou) is the most committed and longest-running business fair taking part in the furniture business. CIFF covers the whole business chain including home furnishings, home stylistic layout, outside and relaxation furniture, office furniture, business furniture, lodging furniture, and furniture apparatus.
Canton Fair (CF)
The Canton Fair is held twice in a year during the spring season and autumn season in Guangzhou. Canton Fair is a far-reaching global exchanging occasion with the longest history, the biggest scale, and the biggest purchaser participation. Although it is not limited to furniture, you can find a wide variety of furniture here including office furniture, furniture for villas and cottages, antique furniture, mattresses, interior design solutions, furniture for public places to name a few.
Shenzhen International furniture exhibition (SIFE)
Shenzhen International furniture exhibition is held at the Shenzhen Convention and Exhibition Center once in a year starting from March 19 and ends on March 22. It showcases the highest quality of Chinese furniture.
International famous furniture fair (3F)
It is held at the Guangdong Modern International Exhibition Centre once in a year from March 16 to March 20. Although it emphasizes the local market yet it has also set up an export pavilion for international buyers. There is a large variety of furnishings available and you can find your desired products easily.
c. Sourcing Online
This is without a doubt the quickest and most advantageous technique. There are majorly 3 Chinese wholesale platforms we can source from Alibaba, Global Sources, and Ali express.
Alibaba is the largest wholesale platform in China. When importing from Alibaba you should limit your provider choice to those that are appropriate suppliers. Alibaba is making huge strides to benefit from the lucrative business of furniture and has spent considerably to acquire a 15 percent share in furniture and home decoration chain Easy home. You will find various furniture suppliers on Alibaba providing a wide variety of furniture for every requirement such as furniture for home, offices, hotels, and much more.
Alibaba concentrates on little and medium-sized endeavors, while Global sources concentrated on medium and enormous enterprises. Since 1971, Global Sources has been encouraging exchange between providers in Asia and purchasers around the world. Although it mainly focuses on electronics and machinery, you can also find here a large number of furniture manufacturers. It also promotes its business through trade shows and magazines.
With a simple search for furniture, we found 26,960 results from 737 suppliers and 54 exhibitors for furniture.
Alibaba.com and Ali express are not able among importing organizations around the world. The two sites are claimed by the Alibaba Group. Although the contrast between the two sites can be difficult to spot, yet they have two altogether different plans of action with various qualities and shortcomings.
Ali Express is dependent on a B2B (business to business) and B2C (business to client) platform that connects usually Chinese exchanging organizations with customers abroad. Ali Express is concentrated on little volume requests for ready-made items rather than specially made items and consequently it is reasonable for little and medium-sized merchants who can’t bear to purchase the whole container of merchandise. You can find a wide variety of furniture here pertaining to the needs of homes, offices, outdoor and indoor furniture, etc.
d. Find a good sourcing agent to help you source furniture
For small to medium businesses or start-ups, it is a good choice to search for a reliable sourcing agent. A sourcing agent knows the market well and will be able to land you a good deal. A good sourcing agent will search for the best factory for your furniture requirements and will negotiate with them at the best price. They know the local market prices owing to their knowledge about wages, taxes, production costs, raw material costs, etc.
EJET sourcing is the leading sourcing agent in China with 13 years of sourcing experience, if you need any assistance in buying furniture from China, please feel free to contact us, we will reply you as soon as possible.
Chapter 3 Ensure Your Furniture Meets the Regulations
Remember that it’s consistently the merchant’s obligation to guarantee consistency with every single relevant standard, including regulating substances. This duty can’t be moved to an outside producer. If somebody is harmed, or if their property is harmed, the shipper might be compelled to pay a large number of dollars in harm.
a. USA regulation
1. The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) regulates the import of wood items through the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS). APHIS attempts to dispose of bugs and illnesses from wood and wood items. It necessitates that wood is heat-treated or gets compound medications before entering the U.S.
2. You have to adhere to a couple of unique principles when importing wood furniture. These standards help discourage unlawful logging and ensure the U.S. from obtrusive types of insects.
3. The Wood furniture that you are intending to import from China is likewise dependent upon anti-dumping obligations.
b. EU regulation
You can possibly sell timber items in the European market when you consent to a few European guidelines like the European Union Timber Regulation (EUTR) and a few item safety necessities. Purchasers also request forest management certification (Forest Stewardship Council, FSC) and maybe for some premium or specialty showcase necessities like ISO.
All wood products that you want to import to the European Union need to originate from legal sources. The most straightforward method to demonstrate compliance is through a sustainable forest management certification that can be obtained from the Forestry Stewardship Council (FSC).
c. Laboratory testing
Having your items tested in a lab is necessary to be certain that your imported products are safe and consistent with every relevant guideline. Importing non-compliant items is unlawful, and can incur you heavy losses if your payload is ever seized by the customs authorities.
A lab test report is a record that demonstrates that an item is consistent with the specific guidelines and benchmarks. Amazon.com and retailers are mindful of item security guidelines and require their dealers and providers to give a compliant certificate. You should work with notable and recognized testing organizations that are authorized in the United States and the European Union. You can discover certified compliance testing organizations on different government sites.
Chapter 4 Shipping Furniture from China
There are different choices for conveyance you can utilize when it concern the shipping from china. You have to figure out which strategy best suits your needs. When selecting a shipment method keep in mind timing, cost, security, and other related issues.
a. Shipping Incoterms
Delivery utilizing the Ex Works (EXW) means the seller has an obligation to ensure the purchasers can access and get the cargo at their place of business. EXW option ensures that the seller has no burden regarding transportation costs and related risks. The seller must make the item accessible at a chosen area, and the purchaser must bear the transportation costs.
FOB (Free on board)
The FOB (Free On Board) cost incorporates EXW value, trucking charge, terminal handling charge (THC), and customs duties. The seller is liable to convey the products to a destination for shipment through a method chosen by the purchaser.
CIF (Cost, Insurance and Freight)
Cost, Insurance, and Freight (CIF) refer to the cost paid by a seller to take care of the costs, protection, and freight against the chance of damage to a purchaser’s goods during the course of journey to the destination port. Moreover, if the need arises for some extra customs obligations or documentation, the seller is liable to cover these costs.
b. Different methods of shipping furniture from China
Samples and small items under 2 kg take 2-5 weeks to transport. This is a good choice of shipment if you have small amounts of cargo.
Sea freight is the most cost-effective transportation method for importing furniture from China. Goods shipped through sea are placed in 20 x 40 feet containers. An entire space of 250 square meters of cargo will be contained into a 40-foot container. Using sea freights the best alternative, particularly if you want to ship large quantities or larger items.
If your furniture cargo is a minimum of five pallets, a good option is to ship them through full container load (FCL). If your cargo is less then this volume then it is best to choose less than container load (LCL). It usually takes around 3-9 weeks to get items through sea freight.
If you avail of this option, you need to finish proper documentation before taking up at the air terminal. It is good to use air freight if you have items heavier than 300kg and take freight from China to the USA for example, the cost is USD $5-10/kg. You will get your shipment between 2 to 10 days. But remember that air freight has weight limits too.
It is a good choice for items under 20 Kg and takes freight from China to the USA for example, it is about 2-5 business days at a price of USD $ 50/kg. In this way, goods will be transported directly to your home.
Chapter 5 Payment Methods
International Wire Transfer
This is frequently utilized for small or medium amounts. A down payment is made before starting the production and the parity is paid later according to the producer’s installment terms. By paying for items in advance, the buyer can lose his underlying upfront installment in case anything turns out badly. The producer can also lose money if the purchaser doesn’t make the later installments due to any reason.
Letter of Credit
If you are purchasing huge quantities then this is the best and most secure way to make payment. It is ordinarily utilized for purchases that amount to more than $50,000. It is not good to use a letter of credit for smaller amounts due to the high fees of the banks.
Online escrow is commonly utilized for amounts under $5,000. Various escrow administrations are accessible on the web. Remember that it is not one of the safest methods to pay and resolving disputes with sellers can be a very long process.
This method is usually used to pay small amounts. If you decide to acquire the services of sourcing agents or companies, you may pay for your items through them. The sourcing agent will make payment through Chinese Escrow or cash on delivery. This is a favored type of installment as the sourcing agent can check the quality when the product is delivered and can dismiss the transfer if quality gauges are not met.
PayPal provides security to the purchasers by securing their bank account and credit card details. PayPal charges the providers a little fee for such exchanges.
Western Union is a quick and favored type of payment for small quantities or sample orders. It involves high risks due to the fact that the payment is made between two individuals rather than a buyer and an organization. Western Union charges a little fee for the transaction.
Chapter 6 Common Mistakes When Buying Furniture from China
Purchasing without doing homework
It is the most common mistake people make when buying from China. You have to prepare for anything significant particularly when it’s purchasing furniture from China. You have to be clear about the room plans or if you want to build a house or office according to a given design you should carry all the details with you so that the merchants will know definite sizes and decrease the chances of errors.
Compromising on quality
When import furniture from China never disregards quality control techniques. If you disregard the quality control checks then there are chances that the providers will begin utilizing low-quality materials. You will only found it when you will receive your shipment.
Selecting unreliable suppliers
Selecting unreliable suppliers will harm your business a lot. These suppliers prefer their commission and profits over the quality and safety of the products. They may handle your goods to poor logistics companies for the sake of commission. Therefore, it is necessary that you search for suppliers having a good reputation and who take the responsibility of shipping your products safely.
Neglecting compliance of the product
Before buying from China, make sure that your product is compliant with the rules and regulations of your country. In case your product is not compliant and the customs confiscate your shipment you will incur huge losses.
Nowadays more and more importers from all over the world are heading for import furniture from china. You have an ever-increasing number of value providers in China that can deliver quality items at reasonable costs. All you want to do is pay heed to the steps discussed above and you will be good to go.