10 Tips to Shopping Goodwill!

Well Its superbowl Sunday and Im not watching the superbowl. Why, you ask? Because I went to best buy two weeks ago to buy a 50 inch plasma that was on sale. They didnt have anymore so I got a raincheck. Well I went back into the store and to my surprise THEY NO LONGER SELL that plasma. To make matters worst the display I ask to buy was even sold. So alas I dont have a T.V. to watch the superbowl. They did not honor my raincheck either.

Its ok. That means I can update my blog. Sorry I have been away for so long. Here are my tips.

1. Get to know the workers at your local GOODWILL (or any thirft store). If the workers get on your good side they will tell you when all of the great items come in. For example. In my local city, Wednesdays are the days when GOODWILL stocks "salavaged" Target items. The items are in perfect conditions, they just dont sell and GOODWILL has a contract to purchase the items at a significant discount. So if I see sale items in Target and go back and they are no longer available...they have probably made the voyage to the Piedmont GOODWILL stores (I think 9 in all...maybe more.) Often workers will give you discounts because you shop regularly. Trust me on this.

2. Stop by as often as you can. For me. I go on my lunch break everyday. Literally everyday. Some days are awful. Some days are GREAT! You never know what to expect.

3. Be aggressive! Some GOODWILL stores have different policies. For the one where my mother lives, they ring a bell and everyone crowds the door to see what is being brought out. They park the cart and people go at it. I HATE IT!!! It reminds me of pigs being called to supper to eat out a trough. Incidently, I never shop there for that reason. Also, being aggressive assures you get the best deals. For example, the workers were bringing out a set of EXCELLENT clean lined contemporary lamps. A pair actually. I was gonna wait til they placed them and grab them. Well some old lady hollered from out back "GIBE ME DEM LAMPS RIGHT DERE!" and I never saw them again. I was hurt. Mortified even.

4. If it doesnt fit, dont buy it. The worst thing is to buy a $4.99 shirt thats too big and sitting in your closet waiting to be taken to the tailors. I should know. I have a closet full of them.

5. If you like it..buy it...no matter HOW BIG!! I no longer drive an SUV so Im very reluctant about buying sofas and chairs and dressers and such because id have to get a U-Haul and pay $20 and then 49 cents a mile. A hassle, but seems like I bite the bullet and do it anyway. Some items if left alone will be bought by someone who will not treat it right. BUY IT!

6. Be creative! I love bowties, pocket squares and the whole gammet. So sometimes I take linen shirts...send them to my mother and she makes me a pocket square or a bowtie out of them.

7. Think gifts. Birthdays, Baby Showers, Anniversarys and so on. Even if you cant think of anyone to buy it for at the immediate moment...if it catches your eye and you really like it buy and youll find the perfect recipient later. Also, you make here someone say at work, "I need a coffee pot," BINGO!

8. Use restraint. I caution my mother about this daily. She has listened. FINALLY. Be careful not to grab a whole bunch of knick knacks, and flowers and this and that and the other. Why, because by the time you get to the register and IF you make it home, you will empty out all your treasures and realize you have no place for them...then we will be watching you on Hoarder Across America.

9. Plug and Test. Make sure you test and plug in all items before leaving. Sometimes you cant return them.

10. Check the return policy. Please make sure you know what items can and cannot be returned. Although I have never returned items to GOODWILL, I see it done (or attempted) EVERYDAY and I see disgruntled customers EVERYDAY. For example. Middle of January woman and her over grown son says, "Haff dees chrima lights dont work...we plugged dem in didnt we momma?" Momma says "Uh huh suuuurree did!"

What are some of your tips?