Everybody loves a bargain. Whether you have $20 in your pocket (thanks to Macklemore and Ryan Lewis for the fun beat) or trying your best to keep your budget in check, thrift stores are a great place to shop. The treasures that can be found in these stores are endless. Mix and match outfits from endless people’s closets. Find used household items and toys for the kids. You don’t have to have a large budget to have style. The trick is how you shop.
Shop often - A thrift store’s merchandise relies on donations. The store doesn't order the inventory. There is no guarantee that shoppers can buy certain items. It is most helpful to find out when the stores get deliveries and have new merchandise on display to sell. It’s a great way to get first dis on many unique and necessary items.
Walk the whole store - You can’t assume that thrift stores will put the best items up in front. Thrift stores have different sales procedures than a typical department store. What no longer works for or fits the original owner does not make it invaluable to someone else.
Inspect items - Look for hidden wear and tear. Loose strings in seams or zipper problems will categorize the items as defective. If you still want it, check with the store clerk for a discount. If you can’t fix it, don’t waste your money. You may not find a dressing room, so wear something you can try clothes over.
Catch the discounts - Some thrift stores offer discounts to senior and students. There may be special sale days to make room for new inventory. See if your local stores have a website or a social media page that you can follow and keep up with promotions.
Shop change of seasons - Lots of people clean out their closets every season or after holidays; it’s a great time to pick up off season items. If the thrift store is in a higher income neighborhood, you can find a great selection of higher end clothes for a steal of a price. Think how happy the budget is at that point. Buy a whole new wardrobe without filling credit cards or getting a fast cash advance to fund it. You can get more bang for your buck if you look for it.
Making a lifestyle work on a skinny budget is possible. Go ahead and get the finer things, but just in a different way. Visit a variety of thrift shops if you have the time. Don’t forget online venues offer up a different selection from all over the world. A tight budget does not mean you have to go without, it just means you have to make smarter choices.