Cheryl emailed in the following tip:
When I told my husband I wanted to be a stay-at-home mom, he was very skeptical about living on one income. I was very passionate about this however, so after a hesitant “yes” from my husband, I was determined to make it work.
One of the major ways I keep our costs down is by utilizing thrift stores and garage sales.
First of all, some of you may be thinking gunky, funky, and skunky. Usually, thrift stores don’t keep those kind of donations anyway.
Some things may be too worn, but I don’t buy that stuff. I’ve trained my eyes to look for the good condition, quality items. I’ve found plenty.
For example, I have name brand clothing in my closet that I normally would have never bought even if I was working, such as Banana Republic and Anne Taylor. But I found them at the thrift store.
A new article of clothing with the tags still on is, at the most, $4. Usually I find things for $2-3, and an even better day is when they have 50% off all items in the store.
I also find great books. I try not to buy books for myself anymore, however, I like my children to have good books on their shelf. I’ve found books such as: Corduroy, Black Beauty, Hardee Boys, Little House on the Prairie, I Spy, and Berenstain Bears all in excellent condition.
I also find good quality educational toys, board games, movies, office supplies… and even a Hunter ceiling fan with a baseball theme for my son. I just checked the price of the fan online. The lowest price was $90. I got it for $12. There is nothing cosmetically wrong with it. If I discover that it doesn’t work, the store has a 30-day return policy for store credit.
We live in Florida, so I love sandals. I would like a pair of leather Reef sandals, but they are so expensive. I figured I would ask for them as a birthday present, but I recently found my size at a local garage sale. They were worn, but not too much — and they were only $1!!! Sold. -Cheryl