Thursday, July 12, 2012

Thrift and Yard Sale Shopping Tips

So you want to save money and find treasures.  Here's some tips to do just that!

1) Keep a list of what you are looking for.  It helps to keep things fresh in your mind.
2) Have a "cap price" set for what you want and stick to it
3)Get your family involved.  Thrifting and Yard Sales are something my whole family enjoys.  We  all know what each person is looking for and it's fun to find stuff for each other. It's also a great way to teach kids the value of money and how to be wise with spending.
4) Nothing is a bargain if you don't love it or will never use it.  Sometimes it's tempting to say, "But it's so cheap."  But if it's not gonna get used, you paid to much.

Thrift Store Specific:

1) Check often.  The stores put out new stuff every day.
2) Don't ignore the little guy.  Some of my best deals came from small shops with great prices.
3) Know the sales and deals.  Most stores have a color of the day that's discounted.  Many have deals of the day, etc.  Here are specifics for some of the bigger stores:

Value Village:  Sign up for a club card.  You will get emails on the 50% off days, get off on your Birthday, and you'll be eligible for lots of specials. There are also punch cards from time to time.  If you shop regularly and fill it up, you get 30% off a shopping trip.
Goodwill: Every Monday, the color of the week is $1.29.  That's for we recently purchased a like new, high end DVD player for $1.29.
4) If you REALLY want it, don't wait.  It's likely not to be there next time.
5)Don't over look things.  If you love something but it's in less than perfect shape, can you fix it?  I've purchased vintage Pyrex that looked like it had been in a house fire, and thus was cheaper.  I cleaned it up, and it's like new.  Clothing with missing buttons, minor repairs or stains that look like they can be removed are often worth the effort.  My husband recently found a pair of high end jeans at Value Village.  They were brand new, for $15.00, but when he tried them on, the zipper was broken.  I took it to the cashier, and asked her if she'd reduce it since the zipper didn't work, and she reduced the cost to $9.  Then, I used my 30% punch card and got them for $5.50.  Then I found a local seamstress who would repair the zipper for $10.  It was worth it.

Yard Sale Specific:

1) You can't tell from the road if it's good.  I've unearthed gold mines at what looked like crummy sales with not much stuff.
2) Always make an offer on an item that you think is priced to high.  Most of the time people are willing to lower it.
3) If you see alot of thing you like, group them and offer a price for all of it. 

If you are willing to take some time and effort, you can get great stuff for a fraction of the price!  Have fun :)

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