I would have to say about 90% of the things in my home have come from these 3 places. I would not have appreciated any of these places before I got married. I didn't like going to yard sales with my mom on the weekends growing up. I was always afraid I would see someone I knew or people would know that things were second hand. When I got married I didn't know I married such a cheapskate. And I say that in the nicest possible way. Along with my husband's "always got to find a deal" attitude and my learning that money needs to stretch as far as possible perspective, I changed my mind. I have decorated my house for a fraction of the cost of retail and I love everything in it. I can look around my house and remember all the places and yard sales things have come from. I am glad that I got over myself and am not to good for yard sales and second hand stores anymore. Here are a few examples of my latest treasures.
Lee and I went to Goodwill a few weeks age looking for a bar stool little did I know I would walk out with this. I have been searching for a play kitchen for L. This one was at the top of my list in the want column but at the bottom of the list on the price column. You can find it on Amazon used for around $150 and off the kidcraft website it retails for $285. I am grateful for the person who dropped it off at Goodwill so that I could buy it for a total of $22.50!
Next there was a yard sale in my neighborhood one morning. I drove by it taking the B to preschool, then on the way home, then picking him up and dropping him off. Each time I saw this lamp from the road. Each time I wanted to stop but was in to much of a hurry and I thought it would be to much money. When I did get a moment to stop and check the price it was $15. Too much so I offered $10 and she said sure. I had no money on me so I had to run home get the kids lunch and try to scrounge $10 bucks up from somewhere before my sister got to my house to go to the movies. Well I only found $8.92 around the house. I was to crunched for time to go to the bank so I went back hoping that would be enough for them. It was. So I guess it never hurts to ask. When I got home I looked up the lamp on the Internet and found that it came from Pottery Barn and retails for $150.00. So $15 was a steal and $8.92 was even better. Never hurts to ask. Which leads me to my next great find...
This little red wagon. After buying the kitchen I had to pull around the back so that it could get loaded up at Goodwill. Right in front of me a lady had a uhaul full of things she was donating. I have joked in the past that I wish I could go through the thing people donated before they dropped it off at Goodwill. So my sister and I were in the car and I noticed the red wagon. I was like should I ask her if she is giving it away. L was all for it. So I worked up my nerves a little bit, got out of the car and asked if she was donating the wagon. She said yep an asked me if I wanted it. I said yes! So just my asking this lady if I could have her wagon I saved $89.99. Free is always good!
Then there was this bedroom set. I already mentioned the dresser and 2 nightstands but never posted the bed. All 4 pieces were $350 off of craigslist. My stomach was in knots over the price tag. It seemed like so much money! Luckily because of my preschool money and a bit of money saved from one of my husbands off duty jobs I could get it. I am glad I did. The people we bought it from mentioned they bought it new a few years ago from Ashely Furniture. $350 may have been a lot for me to spent but it not only gave L a bed but finished off my bedroom set too. It is still for sale at Ashely furniture so I looked up the prices; twin bed $314, Dresser with mirror $288.00. 2 nightstands $240. Retail price $842. So $350, not to shabby.
If I had bought each one of these items at full price I would have spent $1366.99 without tax. But by being patient and searching for a good deal I spent a total of $381.92. Saving me $985.07.
I have had people ask me before how I find such good deals. Well you have to be looking for them and not be afraid to look through a bunch of crap to find the good stuff. You can't go to Goodwill once and not find anything and never go again. You have to go to yard sales, Goodwill and search craigslist consistently to find the deals. I go to Goodwill 4 or 5 times a month. I don't always leave buying things. I have a mental list of the things I am looking for, if it isn't there I don't need to spend money. Don't be afraid to rummage through stuff or ask for a deal. Happy hunting everyone!