Shopping for clothes can really add up, and reselling items usually produces a terrible resale value. This week my wife, Jennifer, and I share with you 5 solid tips that together provide a strategy to maximize your clothes shopping. These tips will be especially helpful to you with these upcoming holiday sales. I’m ready to dive in! Are you? Let’s do it!
1. Work Your Way Up
Because fashion changes so frequently and clothes have a terrible resale value the principle of “Work Your Way Up” that I teach is to start at the lowest tier you are comfortable. Then, if you don’t find what you’re looking for work your way up to the next tier until you do. The tiers are…
- 1 – Goodwill or Savers
- 2 – General Local Consignment Stores
- 3 – Department Stores (i.e. Walmart)
- 4 – Retail Name Brand Stores (i.e. Old Navy, Express, A&F, etc.)
You’d be amazed what you can often find at Goodwill new with tags on it. Also, with consignment and retail stores make sure to sign up for their emails so you receive promotional coupons to implement into your plan of attack.
2. Be Prepared… To Save!
When you shop on the holiday itself, at Goodwill Easter Seals locations and Savers you will save 50% off everything! 😮 Retail stores also often have great savings on holidays as they often time mark the change of seasons as well.
Bonus Tip! – Shopping the name brand outlet stores with a coupon on a holiday weekend is a great way to make a killing! Plan on it!
Lastly, shop smart. You most likely have nearby surrounding towns. Find the consignment and Goodwill locations in all of them and start in the most affluent towns in your radius. You’ll have the pick of the litter!
3. Be Prepared… To Shop!
A failure to plan is a plan to fail. Don’t go in blind! It’s going to be busy so leave your dignity at home! Throw on a ball cap if it’s a bad hair day and get out there and make the savings happen!
Go early! You’re going to have the best selection this way and beat the crowds. It’s a double win! Then you can go home and crash the rest of the day while basking in the spoils of your success!
Shop Solo. Leave the kiddos at home with your spouse or relative so you can be fully focused on your savings mission. Kids don’t do well standing still, if you didn’t notice.
Dress for Success – Avoid long fitting room lines by dressing in smart clothing that enables you to try things on over your clothes. Ex. leggings, tank tops, and fitted shirts. You know your wardrobe best as to what will work should you find you need to use this method.
4. Don’t Forget The Tax
With these kinds of savings it’s easy to get carried away when items are in the single digit dollar range. If you live in an area where clothing is taxed make sure to factor into your overall budget the tax on those items.
Ex. Here in glorious tax-burdened Connecticut all clothing is taxed at our sales tax rate of 6.35%. If you just scored a mountain of clothes for $80 multiply that by 1.0635 to get a true cost of $85.08.
5. Know the Return Policies
Lastly, before you shop and especially before you checkout, make sure you are clear on each store’s return policies. Most consignment store’s sales are final with no exchanges or returns, while at places like Goodwill or Savers it may be an “even exchange” only policy. Likewise, on holidays there may be other unique sales that come with unique limitations. Just know your limits and be prepared!
I know from experience that these tips will equip you to stock up your entire wardrobe for the whole next season! One last thing, often the best time to use these tips is on holidays that coincide with the change of seasons! Happy shopping!
Question: How much do you think this strategy will save you next time you buy clothes? Share in the comments below!