We all want to get the best buy for our money. No one wants to be stuck with cheap stuff, because that’s all they can afford. The trick to saving money on quality items is to buy them secondhand or at close-out prices.
Where To Find Quality Secondhand Items
Where you buy your items depends on what you are looking for, and how much you have to spend. Check out sites like Freecycle and Craigslist for good local buys or freebies. Yard and estate sales are usually the cheapest route. Thrift stores always have great prices on secondhand things, while consignment prices may be higher, but items are usually in better shape, and there is the possibility to negotiate. Resale and closeout stores offer new or near-new merchandise at amazing discounts.
Know Your Merchandise
If you know quality merchandise when you see it, and you aren’t opposed to putting in a little work to refurbish something, you shouldn’t pass by the items with a little wear or neglect. Upholstery can be cleaned or replaced. Scratches and water marks can be sanded and refinished. If you have the opportunity to get something worth much more than its price that needs just a little tender loving care, you could end up with a diamond in the rough.
Give It a Good Once Over
Even if a piece looks good, you need to inspect it thoroughly. Open drawers and doors on furnitureto see how well it is built. Look for loose joints and missing pieces. Check for rusting, corrosion or dry-rotted belts on appliances. An older appliance may not be as pretty as something new, but a quality name brand from a time when things were built to last will probably serve you well for years to come. Ask if you can test it to see if it works, and if not, ask about a return policy.
Buy New at Resale Centers and Close-Out Stores
If you simply must have new quality items, save money by shopping at resale centers and clearance stores. These places specialize in end-of-stock and items that are barely used. You may find furniture that was only used for a few months in a model homes or barely used office furniture. End-of-lot stores have small inventories of heavily discounted items that are leftover from major retailers when they change out their inventory or discontinue an item.
Secondhand and close-out doesn’t have to mean cheap or low-quality. Keep your eyes open, know your items, and be willing to do a little fix-up work, and you will save money on everything you buy.