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Can I Buy a High Quality Sofa for $1500?

By Jeff Frank


I know what to shop for and what to ask, but are there any high-quality sofas out there that will last at least 15 years like my old sofa?When I priced a sofa through Taylor King, the price was around $3K. I was hoping to pay $1500, which I am realizing might not be realistic.
Rowe, Bassett and Temple were all recommended to me, but after researching, none of those sounds like they will last long.
I’m looking for an 83″-90″ wide sofa with a seat depth of at least 22″ and a back height of around 38″.We are a tall family and want to be comfy in our new sofa.
Some of the brands I have researched are Apt. 2B, Taylor King, Lee, Smith Brothers, Hickory Chair.
One of the biggest issues is finding the seat depth I want in the sofa styles I like.
I guess what I am asking is, which manufacturer would you recommend for a decent sofa that would last ten years, meet most of our criteria and not cost $3K?
We currently have Marlow sofas (15 years), which have held up great, but I can’t find any information on them on-line?


Wow! That’s a lot of different questions.

At the $1500 price level, you will find mass-produced upholstered furniture with an average lifespan of 5 years.

It is very rare to find upgraded (more durable) cushion options in this price range. If you can find optional 2.5 density foam or Spring Down (or Spring Fiber) cushions, the sofa lifespan could be stretched to 10 years.

Bassett makes two different upholstery lines.

Basset’s BenchMade collection is custom built.

It is superior to Rowe and is approximately the same quality as Temple.

Bassett’s BenchMade and Temple sofas usually cost at least $3000 and can be far higher.

Basset’s Club Level Collection is mass produced.

Bassett’s Club Level sofas are lower quality than either Rowe or Temple.

You should be able to find a Bassett Club Level sofa for $1500.

Apt. 2B does make mass produced furniture at the $1500 price level.

My biggest concern with Apt. 2B is the 1 year cushion warranty. If the cushions wear out, losing their shape and resiliency (ability to bounce back) after 1 year, the sofa can become far less comfortable. All the glowing reviews about Apt. 2B sofas seem to be from customers who just recently received their furniture.

Rowe is superior to Bassett Club Level but below Bassett BenchMade or Temple.

Rowe sofas usually start around $2000.

I rate Temple above Rowe.

Temple’s Tailor Made Collection is available in a choice of 20″, 22″ and 24″ deep seating.

Expect to pay at least $3000 and probably over $4000.

Temple has several cushion options, including some with 2.55 density Qualux foam cushions, which should have a lifespan of 10 – 15 years.

Temple also offers Spring down and Spring fiber cushion options, which should last 15+ years with very little loss of firmness or comfort.

Smith Brothers and Lee should both give you 10+ years of comfortable service.

Smith Brothers prices start around $2000.

Lee starts around $3000.

Hickory Chair and Taylor King are superior quality.

Most of their sofas are priced above $4000. Some are more than double that price. I came across one curious exception. There is a Tennessee retailer, Chestnut & Hall, that is currently offering Taylor King custom-built sofas for $1999.

That is far below any pricing I have seen for Taylor King sofas in quite a while.

You may have to pay extra for an upgrade to Spring Down cushions that will hold up for 15+ years with very little loss of firmness or comfort.

The Marlow Furniture company was started in 1962 in Hickory, NC, but has been out of business for at least 10 years. Marlow made 8 way hand-tied sofas that were roughly equivalent in quality to Lee or Temple.
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