MoneySavingMom.com
FREEBIE LIBRARY!
Join my email list and get FREE ACCESS to the MSM Freebie Library, including my top printables & eBooks.

Lessons Learned From My First Thrift Store Shopping Experience

Guest post by Carrie Hurst at My Favorite Finds

I went to Goodwill for the first time in my life today. Here are a few things I learned:

If you’re going to pay for it — even if it’s secondhand — make sure you love it.

If I buy five pairs of jeans for $3 each without trying them on and go home and find that only two of them fit, I’m out $9. I don’t justify secondhand purchases with “It’s only $3.” By doing so, I waste money and I’m disappointed.

Don’t be afraid to walk away from a “great” bargain.

This afternoon, I tried on a pair of COACH canvas slip-on shoes. I loved them! They were only $22, and I wanted them badly.

However, they were a bit too tight in the toes. I ended up not getting them because of this and the high pricetag. Even though I loved them, I left them behind because I wasn’t willing to pay for something that I wasn’t 100% convinced about.

Look for brands you are familiar with.

If I’m going to buy something secondhand, I want it to be decent quality and have a history of lasting. Today, I got a Land’s End swim top/trunks for my boys, two pairs of Banana Republic shorts for me, a pair of Saucony sneakers, a pair of American Eagle flats, a Baby GAP tank top for my daughter, an Old Navy polo for my boys, a pair of plaid Cherokee shorts for my boys, a Circo swimsuit for my daughter, and a Rare, too dress for my daughter. I got all of this for less than $30!

I chose these based on what we needed andwanted, but also based upon brands that I know we’ve liked and felt have held up to wear and tear in the past.

What are your best tips and tricks for shopping at thrift stores?

Carrie is a pastor’s wife, and a mom of twin boys and a toddler girl. She loves the Lord, and tries to be an example for Him. Visit her blog, My Favorite Finds.

photo credit

Subscribe for free email updates from Money Saving Mom® and get my Guide to Freezer Cooking for free!

130 Comments

  • Kelly Jean says:

    Thrift stores are a great place to find craft supplies. Want to make a frilly headband for your daughter,. buy a crazy floral blouse for a buck versus buying a yard of fabric. make a teddy bear from a sweater and old buttons. dress it up with a scarf a cute bear for only a few bucks and personal. I purchased all of my milk glass vases for center peices for my upcoming reception at the thrift store. for about $20.00 versus about $15.00 each.

    Find out when your favorite thriftstore half price day is . Yep thriftstores have a half price day.

    About 25% of my wardrobe came from thriftstores or consignment shops and about about 50% of my fiances have since we have been living together. When he works in a warehouse and needs cooler clothing items such as tshirts that can get dirty or torn why pay full price. Thriftstores are probably the second biggest thing that allows my family to take vacations. I have friends that spend around $1500 a year on clothing and I spend about $350.00.

  • trinity says:

    I am a thrift store addict. I find great deals on a lot of items. I recently got some coach loafers at my local Goodwill for $4 as well as a purse for $6. There have been so many things I have found there. I also find that many of them have different prices depending on the area as well as the state. I find the Vets and church thrift stores have better prices but sometimes it is all a hit or miss. You would be surprised some of things I have found!

  • Megan says:

    As an urban dweller who just got done battling bedbugs, I cannot emphasize strongly enough how important it is to be careful when buying things used. Bring items into your home in a sealed plastic bag. If they can be laundered, they need to be washed and dried on the hottest settings. If they can’t be laundered (furniture, etc.) they need to be thoroughly visually inspected and vacuumed off. Trust me, once they’ve invaded your home, they take a huge toll on both your budget and your mental health. This should in no way dissuade you from buying used items – but people need to be aware!

    • Joy says:

      I always seal up my bags from thrift store/garage sales then throw them in the deep freeze for couple of days (read this somewhere to do this first). Then, I try to wash everything on hottest setting and use Borax if it won’t ruin fabric. I also try to wash items separately from regular laundry.

      I also wipe shoes with antibacterial dish soap (inside and out). Then, I lightly wipe down with a spritz of Lysol on paper towel.

      • Megan says:

        The deep-freeze is a good idea too! But my exterminator told me you have to leave it in the freezer for two weeks to kill the bugs and their eggs. They’re hardy little critters.

    • Yvonne says:

      And adding to this is a little known bug called a carpet bettle. Evidence of them are their sheddings. The ONLY way to get rid of them is hitting them with wet raid -not just the spray( just hold the can close). Anyway they ride in on almost anything and the eat almost anything including dust, wood, paper,cloth, etc. Educate before having to remediate, this one is a tough bug.

  • ONe of things I have learned with thrift stores and garage sales is to shop with a plan. I never go just to browse I always try to have a list of things I need and are looking for. I also try to look at sales to see if I can get it for a cheaper price new. This for me is more specific to kids clothes with end of the year sales, coupons, and rewards (like gymboree gymbucks) I can get my kids brand new clothes for cheaper than what I can find in thrift stores.

  • Jill says:

    My ‘tip’ would have to be to KNOW your store’s policies. Just like you have to know your supermarket’s coupon policies, you must know your thrift store policies. Returns, exchanges, pricing, volunteering, etc. I am thrilled that my local Goodwill accepts returns within 90 days. 90 days!! And it’s cash back, not just in-store credit. Also, do NOT assume that your Goodwill is the same as everyone else’s that you read about on the internet pricing-wise. Because it’s not always true! My Goodwill only charges .99 per item of baby/toddler clothing (with very few exceptions, like NWT, outerwear, etc.)It changes to $1.99 once it’s 5T. That’s better than most any other thrift store’s regular prices. Also, there are NO half-price days at any of my local Goodwills. Yup. Bummer. *shrugs* It is what it is.
    This is such a great day to read about Goodwill, because I just went there this morning & got some excellent deals!! Which I will go ahead & post about here (you’re practically begging me to by posting this!) 😉 I bought a girl’s size 6 Janie & Jack shirt for $1.99. The first time I have EVER seen Janie & Jack! Yay! It’s a milestone in my book. Real cute, great condition. And on top of that, I bought a Hanna Andersson 5T dress for $1.99. I’ve purchased a Hanna Andersson thing in the past, but it was stained. Granted, it was at a thrift store for like, .40 or something ridiculous like that, but whatever. My first Hanna Andersson & Janie & Jack on the same day! Who knew?

  • Jen says:

    Thift store shopping isn’t for everyone, and that’s perfectly ok! If digging through old clothes, having to sort out sizes yourself, or dealing with a “no frills” shopping experience isn’t for you, I don’t recommend thrift stores. I’ve been going since I was a teenager though and enjoy it–I don’t get all my clothes there but I tend to get better quality items for the same price I pay for the cheapo stuff from Target/Kohls/etc. You have to have much more patience than simply going to a new clothes store, that’s for sure. I never go when I’m in a rush/feeling sick/hungry/etc and I wear comfy clothing (slimmer fitting so I can try items on) and even leave my purse in the car so my hands are free for digging. Try all the stores in your area, as some stores are definitely better than others. I’ve been to probably 10 in my big city and luckily the one closest to my house is also my favorite! See if any have a sale day too–I never shop at my local store on a regular day, only their weekly 1/2 off day. I try to go with a couple items in mind, which saves me from spending hours there. For instance, I really wanted a summer skirt the other day so I went on 1/2 price day, looked just at the skirts section, and came away after 30 minutes with two perfect skirts for which I paid $6 total. I didn’t even walk through the rest of the store. I do buy clothes for my son there too, though only if they’re in excellent shape, a great brand, or something really unique. Make sure you always, always thoroughly check for holes and stains. Sometimes I dab a little water on a stain to see if it seems like it might budge. I have bought my share of clothes I didn’t inspect fully only to get home and find out the zipper is broken or there’s an unmovable stain! I also buy toys at the thrift store. I’m really selective and don’t buy “junk”, but I’ve gotten some great name brand, like-new stuff. I generally only buy plastic-type toys that can be disinfected, though for my son’s Halloween costume last year I did take a chance and buy a stuffed animal, which I just threw in a very hot washing machine and dryer immediately.

    And actually immediately washing your clothes is another really important tip! I go so far as to tie up the bag outside and carry it right downstairs to the laundry. My city has had bed bug problems so I don’t take any chances! It goes in a hot wash and then right into the hot dryer for an hour to make sure there are no critters. Maybe a little paranoid but I’d rather be safe than sorry, and it’s not like I won’t be washing everything anyway.

    • Robin says:

      What you do with your TS finds…washer and dryer for an hour, is great. My hubby works for a pest control company, that deals with bed-bugs (they have the dogs, and everything! (keep em retrained monthly, it’s awesome)… anyway, the best thing to do is to put anything “soft” in your dryer on the hottest setting for a minimum of 30 minutes. If your dryer is full, longer is good. This does do a number on those animals with sound buttons inside…they tend to melt 🙂 (we won’t buy those used).
      and of course, we also wash all clothes that come to us second-hand, just to be safe.

      Segue, and response to other comments….When it comes to shoes, if they’re something you’re going to wear all day, experts recommend buying new, b/c shoes do mold to feet, and you don’t want something that has molded or worn to fit someone else’s feet. If it’s just a sandal or a dress shoe for special occasions, I don’t think it matters much. (And if the experts disagree even there, too bad! 😉 )
      I grew up shopping second-hand, and do it to this day. I just wish I could find jeans for my tall hubby at thrift stores. But oh well. I actually stopped at a couple shops today. The kids wanted to. 🙂 My son is on a Harry Potter kick lately, scored a Harry Potter hardcover (book 1) for $2 and a potter mug for a quarter. (these were not goodwill, but local thrift…I find our goodwill to be overpriced as well, except maybe on color sales 🙂

  • mildred lane says:

    On the last week end of the month at Goodwill everything is 1/2 price. Also check to see what day is Seniors Day w/ a certain % off.
    You can donate to Goodwill, get a donation slip and use it when you do your income tax.

  • elisabeth says:

    I love our goodwill. It has 29 cent items depending on what color tag it is. I have bought tons of stuff then listed it on ebay making lots of extra cash. I got our couch there for 15 cents. We are lucky that our store does seperate by sizes and gender. I buy all of our clothes there for 29 cents each and its well worth it. I get winter coats there for my younger boys and buy size up whenever I see them. My 18 yr old son gets most of his clothes there name brand too like areo hollister abercrombie and ect. I wait til they are 29 cents it makes the spending much easier

  • Ah, the thrift store. I could spend hours there, not only for clothes but for household items, planters and seasonal items. They may need a little work but it is fun and cheap! I can have so much fun in the thrift store. And plus, I recently began a financial overhaul and the thrift store will soon become my best friend…when I eventually need something. Also garage sales are great!

    Check out my financial journey and frugal tips here!

    http://fififrugality.blogspot.com

  • When you sees something you are interested in, grab it right away!

    My mom and I scored a white iron bed for $14 about 20 years ago. I still use the bed in my home today (then I was heading off to college, now I’m a mom and the bed is gorgeous in our guest room.)

    Right after we saw it, we paid immediately… and while we where there several people tried to buy it after us. I’m so glad we paid right away so no one else could have bought it right from under us!

  • Julie says:

    Coach & Banana Republic at a Goodwill!?! You are a lucky lady to find such awesome brands. My local thrift shops never have such high-end merchandise. (And I know because I stop in all the time.) My area is generally depressed & I have considered making a drive to a ritzier part of the state to check out their wares, but never thought it would be worth it. Now I’m reconsidering!

  • Joy says:

    We have two thrift store chains in my area, Salvation Army and Rescue Mission Thrifty Shopper. And we are getting a Goodwill soon, too.

    Our Rescue Mission has a rewards card. You accumulate points every time you buy something. Once you get so many points you can redeem for a gift certificate (I think). The Salvation Army often runs $7 off $20-$25 in local Pennysaver or Clipper magazine.

    I have bought lots of brand new with tag stuff for my three boys at Rescue Mission, including Gymboree, for under $3. I even bought a hardly worn Columbia ski jacket for $7 for my 12 year old son last fall. I love the Rescue Mission stores! I’m not a fan of Salvation Army though because they staple their tags to clothing and it often leaves pinholes.

  • Kimberly says:

    The town I live in has a local thrift store (not a Goodwill or Salvation Army) that has 2 locations….one of which is 2 miles from my house. They have a Facebook Fan page as well as an email list. I signed up for both and they send out specials daily! They always run a 50% off all clothing on just about any holiday…even government ones like MLK or Presidents Day. They often have 99cent kids clothes days. They also have 4-5 colors of price tags. Each week, a different color tag is marked at the front door as being 50% off.

    I always try to shop for my now 3 year old on either a 50% all clothes day or the 99 cent kids day. I am usually able to get my son outfitted for the season for $20 – $30 bucks.
    I never was a thrift shopper when I was growing up, but now I understand the importance of buying frugally. I tend to get things for myself there or on clearance racks at Penneys, Kohls, Target, etc.

  • Elizabeth says:

    -Make sure everything opens and closes properly. (Buttons, Snaps, zippers)

    -KNOW YOUR PRICES. That is the best tip I can give you. Some thrift stores think that certain brands are really high quality and mark them up really high. It ends up not being worth it! (I’ve noticed this more in smaller towns).

    – Don’t buy undergarments….Unless they have the tags on them.

    -Be prepared to spend a lot of time in order to get good deals. Some days you just won’t get deals. The next day you may get tons.

    Oh…I learned something pretty cool last month. Goodwill has OUTLETS. They take all the clothes, toss them in a huge bin and you go through them. They then charge by the pound. Be prepared to search to get deals, but in the end I found GREAT deals. I found NWOT Candies, Old Navy, Calvin Klein and a few others. I found tons of Kohl’s, and Gymbo in great shape for my DD!!

    • Paula Jolly says:

      Outlets are fun- if you are aggressive and don’t mind elbowing and pawing through stuff while everyone else is doing the same. It can get nasty! I wore gloves when I went because broken glass and even disgusting unsanitary things were sometimes in the mix. At ours, you paid by the pound, which is good in some respects, but bad if you are buying things like dishes and exercise weights! I finally stopped going because I was buying too many unneeded items.

  • Jeanne Simons says:

    I also find that Goodwill is much higher priced than many other thrift stores, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t good deals to be found. I bought a brand new (still in the box) pair of Timberlake sandals for $3.50. I don’t know why they were this low, but I love them.
    1) I prefer to go by myself. It does take some time/patience to “dig” through stuff.
    2) I usually just take my money in my pocket (no purse) and my iPod — listening to music is my “ME” time, so I feel really rejuvenated after I’ve spent some time listening to music AND it allows me to focus on looking instead of any “drama” that might be going on around me. I really hate listening to mother/daughter disagreements over clothing or somebody’s conversation on a cell phone.
    3) I find great deals for Christmas presents. Some people might be horrified with this, but I know that my mom & dad don’t care if it came from Goodwill. So I have ideas of what certain people like and pick it up throughout the year if I find a good deal. My mom & dad both love to read, and books can be picked up for much less than new. If you know your sister or whomever would be hurt if they found out you bought them something second-hand, then just don’t shop for them.
    4) I have a list of books I look for — I work for the library in my town. I have a list of books that I know patrons have asked for but are out of print. I am willing to keep an eye out for the books because if they are cheap, it is worth it to me to get it to make the library a better place. I also happen to know there are some books that are “rare” and therefore pricey on Amazon. I’ve found a few of these and it feels pretty good to buy a book for $1 and sell it for $25 because it is out of print but still in demand.

  • Amy pickett says:

    Sign up for thei email coupons available in every state. Also look for the color that is on sale for that day and save even more,
    We love Goodwill!

  • Barb says:

    When trying on blue jeans at goodwill be sure to check if the zipper stays up. I purchased 4 pair and two of them had bad zippers. My goodwill took them back without question but I had to take a store credit and use within 14 days- I still get ALL of my jeans at goodwill because they have the styles that I like ( Not low waistlines).

  • jennifer says:

    I love my Goodwill! Most kids clothes are 1.99 or less. I’ve scored lots of Gap, Children’s Place, Gymboree, etc for my son and even bought with the sole purpose of taking to the consignment store.

    There is one about 45 minutes from us that charges by the pound. I’ve not been there yet, but want to get there soon! Starts at .99/pound and goes down from there depending on the weight.

  • Nancy says:

    I decide what I need, and go when I have time to really look. I got through the racks, looking at the tags for the brand names. I like Ralph Lauren, Eddie Bauer, and Lands’ End, for casual wear, like tees.
    For children’s clothing, I look for Gymboree, Gap, Children’s Place.
    I look for my favorite brands of jeans, only.
    I try to go on 50 percent off days, and when they have 99 cent jeans. With today’s economy, however, it is very difficult to deal with the crowds. A couple years ago, there weren’t huge crowds, but today it is much different.
    I have found great deals and many are new, with tags still on them. My husband has a dozen Ralph Lauren dress shirts, for work, and all of them came from Goodwill.
    You need to go when you have time to search. You can’t be in a hurry, or you will make mistakes. Forget about going with little kids!
    I have also found wonderful, collectibles, for gifts. New! Some vintage, and all exceptionally nice. I have found new, in the box, Snow Village houses, wonderful Christmas ornaments, Depression glass, cut glass, and great baskets. I shop all year long to find nice items for gift baskets.
    You can get expensive baskets for a couple dollars, and decide on a theme, and create amazing gift baskets for very little money. Think outside the box and find things other than baskets to hold gifts. I recently found a large, pressed glass bowl that I will fill with gifts. It can be used as a punch bowl or a large salad bowl. Use your imagination regarding things to put in baskets, or other containers.
    My Goodwill always has nice wood items, such as birdhouses. These can also make nice gifts.
    You just need to use your creativity and you can come up with inexpensive gifts that will “wow” your family and friends. When I had very little money, I created the best gift baskets because I had to substitute creativity for funds. My family still talks about how great those gift baskets were!

  • Jenna Burns says:

    Just remember not all thrift stores are created equal.

  • Maegen says:

    I’m a Value Village girl, myself.

    I go on their half-off days, which here in WA state, are every Monday holiday (President’s Day etc…). Yes, I’m so cheap I do the thrift store only on half off day-you read that right!

  • Diane says:

    I shop at our Goodwill & they let you brings things back. At our Goodwill they have colored tages on them & each wk a diff. color tag is 50% off. They also give 10% for seniors every day, you just have to ask for it. I was told that they can’t ask. Also thrift stores don’t charge tax. So there is even more savings. I bought a really nice binder with handles for my couponing, I paid about $2.50 for it. I went back a few wks later & bought a Mead binder with several pockets in it, put all my coupons in it & went shopping. I didn’t like it at all because it had no handles. It’s a great binder & looks like new. Just wasn’t meant for me. I paid about $3 for that one but have seen them in the store for over $10.
    I have bought 2 pc Alferd Dunner outfits (3 sets at 1 time) for $5.00@ at the Goodwill. Even the cashier said what a deal.

    I also shop at out Salvation Army thrift store. On the first & third Fri. of every month they have 50% off everything & they too let me return things.

    When I go shopping for cloths (blouses) I have taken clippings off of my pants (inside seams or pockets) that I want to match up & store them in my purse. So next time I get a new blouse it will match the pants I have. I was so tired of buying blouses & not matching anything I had. Which meant I had to buy a new pair of pants. So now I don’t waist my money.
    Love to shop those thrift stores.

  • Shawn says:

    After years of thrift store shopping here are my tips:

    1. Shop on 1/2 price days or sale days. Some stores have sales on certain color tags every day…focus on those tags.
    2. Coats, dresses, jeans, dress clothes are good buys at thrift stores like Goodwill or Salvation Army, however with the popularity of stores like Old Navy, Ross, & TJ Maxx I find that I can get shirts at a better deal new.
    3. Stick to name brand, higher end used clothing…even if you have to spend $3-$4 instead of 99 cents…they will last longer & you will get more for your money.
    4. Look for thrift “boutiques”…they are becoming more & more popular…many specialize in used, name branding, teen clothing. They usually buy & sell. You will spend more per piece than you will at Goodwill, but if you have teenagers you will find very nice, fashionable, name brand clothing at a fraction of the price that you would pay for it new….and if you take good care of it & turn it frequently you can sell it back for store credit. (I have a 16 year old daughter who refuses to buy anything but used jean because they are already “broken in”.)
    5. Thrift stores are a great resource for sports clothing…baseball pants, soccer shorts, etc. Kids wear these items for short seasons then promptly grow out of them before the next season, why buy new?

  • Joanna says:

    If I’m close to a thrift store, I like to stop in if I have time. I never know what I might find on that given day. My lastest and best deal: a pair of running shoes that were my exact size in great condition that retailed $100. It was almost the exact same pair that I had almost purchased that day!
    One tip: I volunteer at a thrift store and I get 50% off anything. My thrift store already is cheapest in the area, and when I pair just 75 cents for each pair of shoes, etc. I don’t mind wearing something for just a season! I then donate it back to the thrift store. I go in just one day a week for 2-3 hours. I love it!

  • Michelle says:

    I love thrifting! I just bought my brand new loveseat from goodwill for $45 bucks, 2 real wood audio towers with glass off craigslist for 90, My nice glass coffee table from Habitat for Humanity for $55 bucks. I like to mix new and old (buying used gives me more money for new stuff, like my $350 dollar recliners). I have found here our Salvation army is crazy overpriced so I usually score knick nacks from there (I love brass and ‘scroll’ metal style works).

    Clothing wise for my child I look for Gap, Childrens Place, Gymboree, I have even found some cute Janie and Jack jeans new for a few bucks!

    For me I look at Banana Republic, Gap, Talbot, NYCO, Ann Taylor. Check for missing buttons and clasps, broken zippers, rips, stains.

    I figure you wear something one time and its used, so why not score some nice deals from something someone outgrew, or bought and never wore…lol

    My husband loves to read and gets new books from Barnes and Noble, but always seems to find 4 or 5 thrift books to throw in my buggy, which ends up being more than half price for all of those than for the one new book.

    I like to have a good mix of old and new, and if I want to spend an afternoon shopping, I grab a Starbucks coffee and shop away without worrying about breaking the bank!!

  • Andrea Q says:

    A quality thrift store is great if it is in a convenient location, but if you have to drive out of your way, consider the cost of gas in your bargain hunting trip. It takes two gallons of gas for me to go to the Goodwill and back, so that’s almost $7. If I come home empty handed, I wasted money (and an hour of my time driving).

  • Jen says:

    I show a a local private owned thrift store rather than Goodwill or Salvation Army most of the time. If I happen to have a few extra minutes while I’m in town running errands or picking up my son, I can stop and quickly look for items we need. Now that the owner has gotten to know me, she will often keep things back for me or let me know about upcoming sales. Last fall she asked me if there was anything in particular I was looking for. She ended up saving for me a brand new American Eagle wrap around sweater with tags on that cost me only $3.

  • Teresa M says:

    Like several people said, I can buy clearance and get so much in the way of new clothes for my daughter. I have learned when is the best time for clearance for stores like JCPenny, Sears, Old Navy and Kohls. My best deal for clearance was a 65 dollar dress at Penneys that I got on clearnace and then a coupon for less than 3 dollars. My goodwills are just too expensive here. They want sometimes 10 for a purse I can buy on clearance at KOhls for that price or less.

  • Kristine W says:

    I too have slowly been going to Goodwill more. I don’t necessarily buy clothes there since I am like many of you and buy new on clearance for cheaper. But I go on their 50% off everything day, and get amazing deals on books for my kids. I have found many chapter books that look like they have only been read once for .30-.50 a book. I love that price on books. 🙂

  • Kristen says:

    Man! I live in South FL… And let me tell you I have no good GW’s near me! I do get great deals, but no sales as mentioned in above comments. I do however have a great book store run by our library where discards and donations are sold for anywhere from free to $5! I was wondering, do any of y’all have this in other states, towns, etc?

  • Teresa says:

    At my nearby Goodwill in a more wealthier town, it is very clean and has really nice young fashionable girls working there. I went in on the 2nd of the month in spring and the girls were putting outfits together, etc. on the floor. I wasn’t sure if an outfit with their tags still on was only $1.99, so I asked. She gave me insight that stores like Target, Kohl’s, etc donate merchandise that didn’t sell on clearance on the 1st of every month. They usually take 1-3 days to unload and mark the merchandise depending on the truck load. I was able to get several outfits and a sleeping bag set…all from Target…all with the original tags still on. That seems like a great deal to me!

  • Mona says:

    My mother and I used to go thrift store shopping ever Tuesday. It was our “junking day”. We had such fun finding our treasures. We had 3 stores and it would take us all day, but we loved every minute of it. I lost my mom 6 years ago and it just isn’t the same. I still love to thrift shop, but miss my best friend with me!

  • syd says:

    Some thrift stores for whatever reason seem to unintentionally specialize in a particular thing. For example, I have learned the Goodwill in my town does not have decent kids’ clothing, but they have a wonderful selection of books for 50 cents. However, the Goodwill in the next town has a great selection of kids’ clothing $1.50 – 3.00 a piece (Gymboree, Justice, Gap, Ralph Lauren, etc.) and womens’ tops, but no good books.

    So it pays to familiarize yourself with the different shops in your area and see what kinds of inventory they have.

    I’ve also found good used clothing at Peddler’s Malls. It’s not just antiques!

    Another weird example — the Habitat store here in town has wonderful cheap prices on furniture and books and household items. The next town over has a Habitat store which is ridiculously overpriced.

    I love Salvation Army because they sort everything (at least around here) by color.

    I also agree don’t pay for something just because it’s cheap. If you don’t love it, it doesn’t fit, it’s partly broken, torn, or whatever, it’s not worth it. You will find those gems in one piece and great condition!

  • Aly says:

    Think of how many things you or someone you know has bought shoes, clothes, gifts that don’t fit, aren’t your taste or are never used. I have donated tons of things over the years. I love finding deals on things that are sometimes new with the tags still on. I hate paying full price & if it doesn’t work for me I usually have a family member who can use it or sell it in a garage sale or just donate it again if I don’t use it in a reasonable amount of time. It’s recycling at its finest. Good for the environment & our wallets. I get great deals on clearance at regular stores too, but for me it’s the thrill of the bargain hunt.

Money Saving Mom® Comment Policy

We love comments from readers, so chime in with your thoughts below! We do our best to keep this blog upbeat and encouraging, so please keep your comments cordial and kind. Read more information on our comment policy.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *