The “life span” of a piece of furniture doesn’t have to end when one office is done using it: with the proper steps, it can provide satisfaction for an extended period of time. Don’t fall under the misconception that your favorite desk or chair needs to be discarded when it could be repurposed somehow, as this could lead to accumulated savings later on.

A study from MIT published in 2010 looked at the possible energy and financial benefits of reusing, refurbishing or remanufacturing furniture pieces. Looking at two different office items, a chair and a desk, the researchers behind this study compared the effects of purchasing a completely new product versus a remanufactured one.

The results showed that both items, when remanufactured, provided savings high above that needed to “break even,” with the desk in particular proving efficient.

“Furniture product life can be extended in two ways — by either continued use or by reselling it, perhaps after some refurbishing / remanufacturing,” the source states. “Remanufacturing of products avoids expending energy required for the production of new products. On the other hand reselling the product only entails the energy and cost associated with transporting it to the new consumer.”

Being convinced that a product has to have a certain life cycle or won’t be any use beyond a set number of years limits the possible functionality that offices could get from the piece in question. A used office chair that has been effectively reprocessed for extended use is a net benefit for both the buyer and the environment. Review remanufactured furniture items for sale to find the ones that will help you escape an unnecessary “life cycle” and get use that lasts without weakening the product.