6 Essential Thrift Store Shopping Tips

Have you ever shopped at a thrift store?  It is a great way to get bargains for things you may need in your apartment home.  Here are 6 essential thrift shopping tips you can use at your favorite thrift store that will help you navigate the aisles of your nearest shop and save you money while doing it.  

Thrift Shopping Tips

clothing bargains at the thrift store

Here are six pointers on thrifting itself. Everyone knows that thrift shops and second hand stores can be great ways to buy awesome stuff on the cheap. However, everyone also knows that finding great used items can sometimes seem like searching for a needle in a hay stack. Never fear, however, because we’ve got you covered.

1. Set a Budget

Pretend your trip to the thrift shop is like an episode of Storage Wars and give yourself a maximum bid amount. The last thing you want to do is to depart the store with a bunch of stuff you don’t really want or need simply because you were overcome with an impulsive pang of sentimentality. Keep your number on the low-side (ex. $15-$25) and see what you fancy.

2. Pay Cash Only

The old slip-n-slide of a debit or credit cost can take the actual fiscal impact of a purchase out of sight and out of mind. Prevent impulsive buying by making payment take the form of a deliberate handing over of physical cash, preferably in ones, so that you really think about your purchases in a deliberate fashion.

alarm clock

3. Scout Ahead

 Thrift shops and second-hand stores are usually niche-specific in some way, from “something for everyone” stores like the Salvation Army to local gems that carry antique and vintage goods, each place carries a distinctive flavor and feel that accompanies their inventory. Consignment stores are better for vintage-style clothes, while big box stores are more likely to have cheap cooking pans, pots, etc. Scout ahead to see what’s out there in your neighborhood and attack the day like a general planning a battle strategy.  Find unique items like an alarm clock, cowboy boots or a fake fur coat!  IMPORTANT: If you buy furniture from a thrift store or consignment shop, always have it professionally cleaned and/or checked for the dreaded bed bugs! It’s a national epidemic.

4. Look for the Unusual

 At the risk of sounding too hipster-like, we encourage you to strike out in new ways while you’re thrifting. The whole point of the experience is to find the peculiar, whether it be in price or fashion. Sometimes odd bits and bobs are the perfect way to spruce up your apartment’s feel or to add a distinctive flare to your life. Remember that strange is sometimes the best thing to mix up an otherwise mundane existence.

dishes at thrift store

5. Use a Tailor

Don’t be scared of an item of clothing just because it doesn’t fit snugly the first time you try it on. The reality is that consignment prices are still going to be lower than designer items even if you bring them to an expensive tailor. Furthermore, if your dear old mother is any good with alterations, you might save even more money.

6. Bring Along Your Grandparents

Clearly this is meant be tongue-in-cheek, but you should know that the elderly carry discount perks! Seriously, though, your grandparents might know more about particular items from vintage shops because they were your age when they were being used! Draw upon the wealth of their experience and knowledge.

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