Attention all deal seekers, August 17th is National Thrift Shop Day! There’s no time like the present to walk into your local Thrift Store with a purpose. On this special day, Thrift Shops feature more deals and sales than usual. It can feel overwhelming to search through seemingly endless racks of clothing and shelves of figurines, books, and more. So, check out our shopping guide below to learn what to buy and what to avoid.
Know your Shops
To prepare for this shopping holiday, you can start by visiting the following websites to find thrift shops near you: The Thrift Shopper, Good Will, and Savers. While you’re searching these sites for locations, make sure to look for any applicable coupons or clubs you can join for further discounts (such as senior or military). In particular, Savers has a popular shopping club. You can even buy Goodwill Gift Cards from Raise.com to save an extra 5%.
Look for Quality
Whether you’re buying furniture or clothing, shopping at a thrift store doesn’t mean sacrificing quality. Thrift Shops sell items donated to them, so the quality varies greatly from store to store. Be sure to pack your hand sanitizer as you will be getting your hands dirty inspecting for quality. Steer away from cheap office furniture in favor of older items crafted from real wood. When it comes to clothing and purses, look for designer labels, smell the garments, flip clothes inside out, and scan every inch for stains, rips, pulls, and tears before you try them on. If anything smells like smoke, move on. That smell won’t come out. Know that vintage clothing will have much smaller sizing, so you will need to size up to fit into older clothing. Skip bathing suits, socks, and underwear. You can get those same items brand new for very low prices at stores like Big Lots, Target, and Ross. Better to be the only user of delicate intimates.
Research, Research, Research!
As you search the shop take note of any items of value. If you see clothing, furniture, books, art, or figurines that appear older or collectible, look them up online. You never know when a treasure is actually worth more than the Thrift Shop is asking for it. In those cases, you could buy the item and then later resell it for a profit. Etsy and eBay are great sites to see what items are worth. Load up their apps on your smartphone so you can quickly determine the value of your findings. With the low prices of Thrift Stores, one valuable purchase resold could pay for all the other items you buy to keep. Special tip: if you find art you don’t like, but in a beautiful frame, buy it for the frame. You can always replace the art and save tons of money on framing.
Stock up on holiday decorations and gifts early. With the holidays so far away, you can swoop in and score great deals. Why not buy gifts for your friends? Being prepared always feels better than rushing because you procrastinated. Let National Thrift Shop Day inspire you to get ahead in your holiday planning with great sales.
Don’t forget, if you’re going to the Thrift Store to shop, bring something to donate. Give back to the store’s ongoing supply of goods. An item you no longer want just might be one that someone else needs. Remember, you’re doing more than snagging great deals from thrift shops, you’re making purchases that directly help charitable organizations.