9 Tips to Shopping at Goodwill - Simply Complicated Mom

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9 Tips to Shopping at Goodwill You’ll Kick Yourself for Not Knowing

9 Tips to Shopping At Goodwill You’ll Kick Yourself
for Not Knowing

It is no secret that I love a good deal, but a  lesser known fact about me,  is that I love to venture into Goodwill stores on what my kids call “treasure hunts.”  These shopping expeditions are comparable to tiny hunting expeditions.  Always hoping to find something great,  but never really knowing what to expect.    A Goodwill store is like no other,  there are store codes and sales to decipher. Throwing even the professional shopper for a loop. To clarify some of the confusion for you and help you to get the best deal,  I have put together a list of the things you need to know about shopping at Goodwill I wish I would have known.

9 Things you Need to Know Before you Go to Goodwill!

  1. There are no listed prices only color codes. The colors/prices  are organized by racks. It took me a good ten minutes of wandering around to figure this out and ask an employee to explain the system to me.  The day’s are  chosen by color/sale day.  The day I was in happened to be  a “Orange” day.  Meaning every thing with an orange tag was 50% off.  Making one of my purchases only $.99!   The color of the day changes from store to store, and day to day.
  2. Shop Early and on Mondays~ The bulk of donations are made on the weekend after garage sales and house “purgings.” Therefore merchandise is heavily stocked on Monday mornings.
  3. Every day of the week there is a ” Special.” The day I was there it was Military day.  Military members received an additional discount with a valid I.d.  This is the sale schedule in my neck of the woods.

    9 Things about Shopping At Goodwill You'll Kick Yourself for Not Knowing
    Sorry for the weird pic, It was taped to the cash register!
  4. Be ready to work for the best treasures.  At first glance a Goodwill store may seem a little daunting but once you know what and where you are looking for,  get to work.  You never know what you are going to find.  I went in that particular day looking for a medium size vase and I set my kids free.  This is what they came home with! $16.71 for a bag of almost brand new Hollister, Nike, Ecco, Victoria’s Secret, Old Navy &  Target! 9 Things about Shopping At Goodwill You'll Kick Yourself for Not Knowing
  5. Keep an open mind~ My son had just moved into his first apartment, Goodwill just so happened to have that day a perfectly good leather and matching chair set for $99! Yes, you read right.  The set had zero stains, zero smell and was in great condition.  Would I buy cloth furniture from Goodwill? Personally, probably not.  But for a starving college boy,  It  fit the bill just right.
  6. Halloween Happenings!  Looking for a “vintage” wedding gown or unique costume for Halloween.  Goodwill is the place to shop.  I found a real wedding gown, satin, veil and all for $29.99.  I desperately tried to convince my daughters to me a Mexican day of the dead bride doll for Halloween, but I had zero takers!
  7. shopgoodwill.com ~ This online auction site by far is the coolest little nugget so far.  They have everything you could possibly want online. From the most bizarre and unique grab bag of $2 party supplies to a $20,000 ring going up for auction and everything in between.  There is always something that makes my chin drop, in awe and wonder,  “Why would someone just drop that off at a goodwill?” I bid on this piece of art and WON!  for $14.99 I will update this post when it arrives to let you know if I like it or not!

    9 Things about Shopping At Goodwill You'll Kick Yourself for Not Knowing
    Yes, I know, I have eclectic taste in art 😉
  8. Sign up for your local Goodwill newsletter or mailing.  Some local Goodwill’s send out mailer’s or emails alerting their shoppers of special store happenings and events even coupons for greater savings. You can search for your local Goodwill HERE> 
  9. If you don’t like your closest Goodwill…Keep looking!  I didn’t like the first Goodwill I ventured into.  It was overcrowded, kind of smelled, and was disorganized.  It quite frankly, put a bad taste in my mouth for quite some time. UNTIL a new Goodwill opened up near my house and it was organized,  clean and the employees are so friendly.   And again, if you aren’t a fan of crowds, Go early, to avoid tons of people , to hit a clean store and shop best selection.
Do you have any Goodwill Tips?  I would love to hear about them in comments!

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