Save Money Shopping For Clothing At Thrift Stores
On average, most people clear out their closets at least twice per year. All of the clothing they no longer wear it taken to charity locations and thrift stores. Many people donate clothing items that they only wore a couple of times or that still have the tags on them. The most common thrift stores to find such clothing are the Salvation Army and the Goodwill. Both of them inspect clothing for stains and tears so you can be sure you will find good quality clothing for men, women, and children at very low prices.
Many people think these thrift stores only carry outdated clothing but that is simply not the case. Children often outgrow clothing before it has been worn out or the style has faded. There are also plenty of clothing articles that never go out of style including t-shirts and denim jeans. While you may not find the same styles offered at the trendy retailers in the area you will find plenty of quality clothing for less than you will pay for it anywhere else. I have walked out of such thrift stores with bags of clothes that cost me less than purchasing one outfit at a retail store.
Jackets are very expensive but not if you purchase them from a thrift store. There are plenty of winter jackets, pullovers, and windbreakers to choose from. To make finding things in the right size easier most thrift stores separate clothing by the type that it is and by sizes. However, you will need to spend your time looking through what is available. The downside is that if you do find something you really like and it doesn't fit you won't have very good luck finding it in another size as you do in a department store.
Depending on the location of the thrift store, they may carry various household items as well. Some of the larger facilities offer used furniture, appliances, and books. I found a couple of nice wood end tables at a thrift store once that I like so much I have never replaced them with anything else even though I can now afford to do so.
Too many thrift stores have gotten a bad reputation for being viewed as a place to shop for individuals who don't have very much money. If your pride keeps you from visiting thrift shops then you will be throwing your money away. If you have never been into a thrift store you really should take the time to do so. You will be pleasantly surprised at what you find there.
Another good alternative is shopping at consignment stores. These are places where individuals take their unwanted clothing and furniture to be sold. The store splits the profits made from anything that sells with the person who brought it in. Most consignment items can only be on display for a limited amount of time. Towards the end of that time frame the items are generally sold at a discounted price before they are taken off the list of items to be sold.
You will pay more for items at a consignment store than you will at a thrift store but you will also be able to find some wonderful bargains that still save you money over buying them retail. The reason you will pay more is because the person selling the items and the store want to make as much profit as possible. You generally won't be able to negotiate the prices though.
One good example of saving money at either thrift stores or consignment stores is for party dresses, wedding dresses, and prom dresses. It is likely that they will only be worn once so it is silly to spend hundreds of dollars on such a gown. You will likely be able to find a good selection of such dresses that are still in style. Even if you have to pay to have the dress altered a bit you can still have the beautiful dress you want without the expense.
Can Discount Stores Really Offer You A Bargain
It seems like dollar stores and other various discount stores are becoming a common retailer in most areas. Can these discount stores really offer you a bargain or do they just sell poor quality items? In my opinion, there are plenty of gear bargains to be found in dollar stores and discount stores if you look for the right items.
I give lots of cards to people, but they can cost $3 each at most retailers. I can find some great cards at discount stores for about $.50 each. They are still funny or pretty or sentimental in nature and I never feel like I had to settle for less than what I wanted to say.
Disposable items for a party are a great deal at discount stores. The cost of napkins, paper plates, cups, silverware, invitations, and tablecloths can really add up fast. Wrapping paper and gift bags are another area of party items that can be found for a good price at discount stores.
I wouldn't recommend going into discount stores and buying gifts for your family members or friends, but there are some good items in there. I personally enjoy buying picture frames from discount stores because they look just as nice. However, I would feel bad giving picture frames from these stores as gifts. For example I bought a very nice set of three frames from a discount store recently. They look like glass and make a beautiful display on my dresser. Yet when you pick them up you can quickly tell they are made from lightweight plastic.
Most discount stores have plenty of toys for children, but remember that children are very hard on toys. They will be very disappointed when the head pops off the doll or the tires fall of the car. I wouldn't recommend buying such toys from a discount store as the quality just isn't there.
Yet there are plenty of fun children's toys you can get from a discount store including cards, marbles, bubbles, sidewalk chalk, and coloring books. These all make great items for stocking stuffers or even for traveling to make the trip go by faster. I like to bring bubbles for when we stop at a rest area as an incentive to get them to treat each other with respect while we are on the road. Simple, but it works well every time!
There are also plenty of items at discount stores that you can use to decorate your home. I refuse to pay $35 for a shower curtain! It just isn't going to happen. I always get them at the dollar store for just a couple of dollars. They last a very long time and they were well. I have not problem at all when the time comes to replace it. I have also found neat soap dishes and wall hangings for my bathroom at discount stores.
Office supplies are something most of us use on a regular basis. You can get them for a very good price at discount stores. Notebooks, paper, pens, glue, rulers, scissors, calculators, and envelopes can all be found for a really good price. I have never had any problems with the quality of such items. They are very comparable to those I buy at other retail stores for much more money.
I think when it comes to finding bargains at discount stores there are some to be found. It is important that you don't have too high of expectations when it comes to the quality of the items. Yet in most of the cases relating the different items I have described above, the quality doesn't have to be exceptional. They will work to serve the purpose without costing you a fortune. This makes party planning much more fun when you know you have the budget to cover it all. If you don't shop at discount stores you are really missing out on some great bargains!
Finding Bargains While Shopping For Antiques
Many people have the misconception that antiques cost more than they can afford. Shopping for antiques is a great way to spend a free afternoon and you may be surprised at how many good bargains you come across. The hardest thing is many people don't know the true value of the particular item they are looking at in an antique shop.
It may have caught their attention because of the style of it or it brings back happy memories. You never really know if the shop owner is trying to up the price or if you are already getting a good deal. Since you can't quickly go to another store and compare the price you pretty much have to decide the maximum you are willing to pay for an item and then walk away if the negations don't work in your favor.
It is a good idea to do some checking into the reputation of a given antique dealer before you even step foot into their store. You will find you are able to get good deals on antiques when you get to know the owner of the store. If you are a frequent shopper in the store you can build a good relationship. Brining in other customers to the store is something that will get noticed as well. The owner of the antique store will want to work with you on items so that you keep generating more business for them.
You will be able to negotiate the price for what you want if the antique shop is operated by the owner and not several different employees. Even though you will find more selection at antique malls, you won't be able to negotiate the prices as much. Small antique shops can generally offer you some history on the pieces you are the most interested in.
For most antique shop owners, money talks so carry plenty of cash when you go out looking for antiques. This way they don't have to mess with credit card transactions that cost them money. Many of the older antique stores are hesitant to take personal checks, especially if you are from out of town. Showing that you do have the cash with you in an unobvious way is also helpful. For example, you can count it and then say will you take $100 for it, that is all I have with me today.
It is important to remember that you will be purchasing antiques in the condition they are in. Make sure you take the time to thoroughly examine what you are purchasing. You don't want to get home and discover what you thought was a great bargain is nothing but junk. Most antique dealers take pride in offering quality items but you still need to check. You will be disappointed if you think you are going to take home an antique in mint condition for a very low price though.
If you are looking for certain antiques, take a look around online to get a good idea of what the going price is for them. Try to negotiate something that is about 25% less than the rates you find online. Don't be afraid to ask the antique shop owner to cut you a better price. It helps if you say something along the lines of "would you accept $100 for this"? Instead of "can you lower the price"? It definitely helps you get what you want if you are assertive but not going overboard.
Get The Very Best Rates On Hotel Rooms
It can be fun to go on a trip and enjoy staying in a luxurious hotel room. Yet many people have to pass up that option and go for a more moderate hotel because of the expense involved. There are some good ways to get the hotel you want at a price you can afford though. It does take some research and planning but it can be done.
Regardless of the hotel you are looking at, weekends are generally their busiest time. Planning your stay during the week will help you get a much lower rate. You also need to do research to find out the slowest time of year for that given hotel. They will offer lower prices during that time period so that they can sell rooms rather than leaving them empty.
If you have any type of membership such as AAA or military, you may be eligible for discounts on various hotels without even knowing it. Call the hotel and ask them what discounts they offer. While you have them on the line ask them to quote you the very lowest price they can offer. Then compare this price to different online sites.
Sometimes the hotel offers the best price and other times you will find it online. If you are more comfortable booking with the hotel directly, ask them to honor a price you found somewhere online. Many hotels offer discounts for people who have stayed with them before, even free nights or upgrades after you have stayed with them a set amount of times.
If you will be staying at the hotel for several days at a time you will likely get special treatment. This could be a room close to the elevator or with the best type of view. Make sure you mention the length of your stay and what you are interested in when you make the reservation. There is generally no extra cost for such features but make sure you ask before you agree to the reservation.
When you arrive at the hotel you can ask them for a free upgrade. If they have the room available they may be able to honor your request. There is no guarantee that it will happen though so be prepared that you will be in the type of room you paid for. If you are visiting the hotel on the off season or during the week you are more likely to get such an upgrade at no extra charge. You may mention that you would really love one of the balcony rooms if they could offer you an upgrade if you want a specific type of upgrade amenity.
Many people plan their hotel arrangements way in advance. This is good so that you are guaranteed a room. However, if you can get away with flexible days to stay then you can keep a watchful eye on the very best prices. You can grab some great last minute deals on hotel rooms online at different travel sites. You have to be careful though because you don't want to end up with no hotel room at all.
You can try to work out a deal by simply walking into a hotel in the late evening to see what is still available. You have a good chance of working out a good deal since the room may go unused if they don't offer it to you. However, they may be viewing it as a chance to get more money for the room since you are looking for one at the last minute. Don't be afraid to say no to their offer and try to renegotiate it. Too many people simply walk into a hotel, as the price, and then pay for it without any negotiating taking place whatsoever.
If you know several other people who will be staying at the same hotel you can ask for a group discount rate. In some cases the rooms all have to be paid for together but the majority of hotels will accommodate individual billing.
Save Money When You Purchase Damaged Goods
No one wants to get any item they have purchased home and discover that it has been damaged in some way. In the event that it does happen the course of action to follow is to return it to the place of purchase for another product in excellent condition or for a refund of the cost they paid for it. However, the retailer has to try to make some money of these damaged goods so they will sell then at a cost that is much less than the actual cost of the item.
If you are handy with repairs, then this could be a great way for you to get a bargain price on the products you really want. Furniture is a very common type of product that can be damaged. Yet it is fairly easy to repair a torn cushion or cover up scratches on tables and desks. The more severe damage the item has then the more money you will save on the cost. It is a very good idea to take find out exactly what repairs are involved and the cost of the materials to complete the job. If you won't be able to complete the work on your own then you need to find out how much it will cost to take it to someone else.
The majority of retailers don't leave these returned items with scratches or dents in them out for everyone to see. It is definitely worth the time to ask the sales clerk if there are any damaged items of a particular product that you may be able to purchase at a lower price. I did this at Sears once with a TV and got exactly what I wanted for $600 less because there was a huge scratch on the top of it. I was able to fill it in with some Old English Polish and I placed a couple of picture frames on the top of it anyway.
Grocery stores often sell damaged goods at a lower cost as well. They only do this with products where the packaging has been damaged but nothing else. Canned goods that have been dropped and dented offer foods that are still good inside but that can on the shelf for regular price is going to get passed over time and time again. These items are generally found in one particular area of the store, often with other discounted items.
You may not realize it but many discount retail stores such as Ross and TJ Max offer designer clothing that have some defects in them that make them not suitable to be sold at high priced retail stores. In most cases you can't even see the damage to the clothing when you try them on. However, if you can get a designer jacket at
Take The Vacation You Want Without Paying A Fortune For It
Take the Vacation you want without Paying a Fortune for it
The majority of us live a very fast paced lifestyle that involves more things to get done than we really have time for. As a result, it is ourselves that we don't fully take care of. Planning a vacation is a great way to reward yourself for your hard work as well as have some time to relax. Many people think they can't afford a vacation, but with some time spent looking into various aspects of things it is very possible to take the vacation you want without paying a fortune for it.
First, you need to decide where you want to travel so that you can collect all the information about getting there and the various attractions. If you need transportation to get there look at the various options. Many people think getting a package vacation that includes airfare, hotel, and a rental car is the best way to go. In many cases it can be but that isn't always the case. It depends on the various specials that are available.
For example my husband and I wanted to take our children to Disneyland. Yet the cost was several thousand dollars for the roundtrip flight, hotel, passes to the parks, and rental car. We thought about going somewhere else but decided to see what our options were first. We discovered that it was almost $300 per person to fly to California and back.
Yet we found roundtrip tickets to Las Vegas Nevada for $99 per person. We rented our car from that airport instead and drove the remaining 4
Save The Most Money With Holiday Sales
Many shoppers love to take advantage of the sales that take place around the various holidays. Yet in most cases it is the time right after the holiday when you will benefit from the most savings. One exception to this rule is the Black Friday that occurs the day after Thanksgiving. It is considered to be the biggest shopping day of the year. You can definitely benefit from tremendous savings but you have to be willing to fight the crowds and get up very early to get the best deals.
Jewelry is commonly on sale the weeks before Valentine's Day. This is because many men buy their wives and girlfriends beautiful bracelets, earrings, necklaces, and engagement rings during this period of time to surprise them on Valentine's Day. In the weeks after Valentine's Day though you can save at least 30% on the same items. Now, I am not recommending that you delay giving your sweetheart their Valentine's Day gift late to save money. But you can benefit from such sales by getting quality jewelry at a bargain price to give on a birthday, at Christmas, or for any other occasion.
Easter clothing isn't the cheapest thing to purchase, and the larger your family is the more expensive it will be. Yet right after Easter all of those pretty dresses and little pant suits are very cheap. You can buy them to use for other occasions throughout the year. They make good clothes to wear to Church and weddings without costing you a fortune. You can also purchase them for the following year to save you plenty of money.
From the day after Thanksgiving that we talked about through Christmas Eve, shoppers are in a frenzy getting the perfect Christmas gifts for those on their list. It can be stressful and it can cost you a fortune. Many people are willing to pay more for gifts this time of year because it is a necessity and they really are more interested in getting their shopping done. That is until the credit card bills start rolling in!
To help reduce the amount of money you spend on Christmas gifts, try shopping for them all year long when you find sales. How many times have you seen something on sale and said to yourself that would be the perfect gift for a specific person? Take advantage of these opportunities and store all of the items you pick up in one location. This way you always know where to find them. Using this method you can give wonderful gifts to those on your lists without spending more than you have to.
Don't forget to take advantage of those great sales the day after Christmas as well. This is another opportunity to pickup gift items that you don't want to pass up. You can even buy items for yourself without feeling guilty. Those perfume gift sets will be at least 50% less the day after Christmas. I buy a couple of them in my favorite fragrances so I don't have to buy perfume throughout the year.
You can take the expense out of shopping if you take advantage of holiday sales. If you plan in advance you will find that the actual sells after the holiday has passed are much better than the sales prior to it. If you enjoy shopping as much as I do then you will be very happy to find out how much money you can save on items you will eventually need to purchase anyway.
Do You Really Save Money If You Purchase Items In Bulk
Do you Really Save Money if you Purchase Items in Bulk?
With the continued cost of various items in our society the concept of buying in bulk is getting to be more common that ever. Yet many people question if they are really saving money or not. The answer to this question that yes you will save money when you purchase the right items in bulk. For example you really don't need to purchase a case of 200 light bulbs as that will last you for many, many years. On the other hand if you have a fairy large family or lots of guests on a regular basis you might consider buying toilet paper and paper towels in bulk.
Any item that you will use up in a short period of time is a good candidate for being purchased in bulk. There are many membership warehouses that offer bulk items that focus on families and small businesses. Dry ingredients for your home including sugar and flour are good options. Avoid buying bulk items that will result in eating the same thing day after day though as no one wants to have to do this. For example, don't buy snacks and potato chips in bulk because everyone in your family will quickly tire of the taste.
If you find that such items like that are a good deal but more than you reasonably need, consider buying bulk items with another family. This way you can share the items and the expense. It is good idea to take the other party shopping with you so that everyone gets a fair say in what items will be purchased. You may need to be willing to try new brands of items to make this work. If the other party already uses that brand ask them to give you a sample. If you want them to consider your brand then offer them a sample of it to try as well.
Meat is probably the best item you can buy in bulk to save money. This will likely involve investing in a freezer that can be kept in your garage or basement to store the meat in. You can purchase a whole beef,
Save Money When You Purchase Refurbished Products
Most of use enjoy being able to buy the items we need as well as enjoy some luxury items now and then. The cost of many items though makes it difficult to budget for them if you don't want to simply run out and charge up your credit cards every time you want or need something.
One of the best ways to get what you want or need is to take a close look at refurbished items, also referred to as reconditioned, that are for sale. These items offer you the same name brand and the same quality but they are sold for less. This is because the item has been returned because it did not work properly. Yet it has been looked at and repaired so it is just as good a purchasing a new one. Many refurbished products come with a warranty as well but several of them are purchased in an "as is" condition. Make sure you ask about this before you make the purchase.
Some individuals avoid refurbished products because they fear they won't work well for them. They figure since the product has already proven to be defective one it surely will again. This is very rarely the case as refurbished products are examined by those trained to repair them. Once the problem is identified the work hard to correct it. Before the product is resold it is thoroughly tested.
Some items that get refurbished are more common than others. Generally all of the various types of electronic products out there can be refurbished. Vacuum cleaners and computers are two of the most popular. Why pay for a new computer or a new vacuum when you can get the same model with the same features for less then
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