Whether you’re hitting up the local junk store or garage sale, consignment shop or charity store, thrifting for items can be time-consuming. Buying used can be beneficial for various reasons, including frugality, sustainability, and even just for the sake of finding a one-of-a-kind quirky item.
Some simple tips can help make your purchase a whole lot easier.
1. Make a budget.
While all purchases should be budgeted, it’s easy to go overboard in a resale setting. The items are usually cheap, and almost always one-of-a-kind . The price tags add up quickly. Before walking up to the register with your final selection, take the time to close your eyes and envision how this item is going to fit into your life. How will it look in your closet next to your other articles of clothing? How will it fit into your existing decor? Will it fit in your car for the trip home? If there are any snags in your plan, put it down, and let your awesome find become someone else’s treasure. This will save you the pain of lugging the junk back later.
2. Check for signs of damage, wear, and tear.
Many times items are abandoned by their original owner because they no longer serve a purpose. Other times it’s because they’re useless junk. Check clothing thoroughly for holes and stains, glassware for chips, cracks, and other marring, everything for smell, and furniture for durability. Nothing is worse than getting home and promptly placing your newly acquired find in the trash.
3. Be aware of your local store’s Sales Promotions.
Yes, even thrift stores have sales! Many become overloaded on one type of item and need to liquidate for extra room. Others have revolving color price tags, and even 50 percent off event days. Some have Senior Citizen, Military, and bulk purchase discounting as well.
4. Be ready to haggle.
Most thrift stores have fixed pricing, but occasionally you can talk them down if there’s a flaw. Garage sales and flea markets have the most flexibility in this area. Come early to inspect the items, and wait until later in the day to get the best deal. The vendor will want to take as little home as possible, and you could land a great bargain.
5.Come with some of your old junk in hand.
Have you worn that fantastic dress in the past five years? Are you hanging onto those “fat clothes” just in case? These items are weighing you down. If the item no longer serves a purpose in your life, it’s time to let someone else give it a new home. Just let go. Donations are tax-deductible, and more expensive items can often be sold on consignment.