Purchasing everything needed for a property can be a daunting task. There is so much that needs to be bought in a small amount of time. There are two ways to go about it and it depends on how much time you have. If you are renting a property you will usually have less time than if you bought a place. With purchasing, closing periods are usually longer than with renting.
The first (and more expensive) way is to purchase everything new. I usually do a combination of Costco, Walmart, Ikea and a dollar store. I start by getting all of the prices from Walmart.ca. This allows me to get a base price. I then go to Costco and the dollar store to purchase what I can. Then go to Walmart of everything else. Costco is great for cleaning supplies; the dollar store is great for kitchen and bathroom supplies. I think go to Ikea to purchase all of the furniture I need. I furnished a 2 bedroom, 1 bathroom for about $7000. If I had more time and could take advantage of sales, I could probably get that price down to $5000.
If I had more time to prepare, I would take advantage of garage sales. Garage sales can be a great way to find lots of household items for a fraction of the cost. You may also find better quality items than what you would find at Walmart or the dollar store. Unfortunately, this takes much more time as most garage sales are on the weekend during the day.
Remember the more you can save when furnishing a unit, the faster you will be in the black. How do you save money when preparing a unit?