Many New Yorkers love IKEA. The furniture ranges in price, quality and style so you can always find something you like. Billy bookcases have extensions and drawers you can add-on for a neat, personalized look. Best of all, IKEA allows us to make the most out of our very limited space by fitting an 8 drawer piece into the triangle shaped corner behind the radiator. We get it. When it comes to moving IKEA furniture, things can sometimes get tricky.
A popular solution for people without a closet is the PAX wardrobe. Coming at different sizes, varying from 6 to 9 feet tall, you can have a free standing closet in your room. Not only that, but you can add mirrors on the door and buy all sorts of drawers and extensions for the inside to store all of your clothes in a manner so organized that even the most nit-picky will be satisfied which really makes the PAX wardrobe better than a closet. Unfortunately, moving the PAX is no easy feat. Even the narrow and shorter sized units are unfortunately too bulky to go into many elevators and staircases, unless they were built in the last decade or so. Even when the staircase is wide enough, the pieces are just not built to withstand all of the pressure of its weight on one corner which is essentially unavoidable if they are going down staircases. In theory it would make most sense to take the piece apart, transport the pieces, and put it back together at the destination. In practice, the areas where the screws hold together the plywood do not always cooperate and the wardrobe is seldom as sturdy after the dis-assembly and reassembly.
PAX wardrobes are not the only pieces that can cause problems. New Yorkers often put together the largest Billy bookcases in their apartment and never realize that you are now stuck with a big, relatively heavy, square that cannot come out in one piece. Luckily, the Billy is a lot sturdier and is much easier to take apart and put back together without causing structural damage. The most important thing when taking apart and putting back together the bookcases and dressers is to keep the wooden pegs intact.
The advice I give my family and friends is that you have to consider not just how convenient a piece of furniture is in your apartment, but the practicality of buying it. If you are staying in your current apartment for 3+ years, it probably makes sense to buy anything that will help you make best use of the space. If you potentially see yourself moving after 12 months and are not prepared to throw out a $300 piece of furniture or spend the money or your time to take it apart and put it back together, do not buy it. Listing it on Craigslist really does not work as well as people think. You are not the only one trying to get rid of a 7′ bookcase for 25% of purchase price because you cannot get it out.