PTA Thrift Shops Complaint - I Thought Thrift Shops Were Supposed To Be Affordable

Review by buyersbeware2008 on 2011-11-03
PITTSBORO, NORTH CAROLINA -- I thought thrift shops were supposed to be affordable? Thrift shop? (Or) are they really pawn shops? I have noticed in the past several months that thrift shops all around are jacking up their prices....Why are they being allowed to do this on item's that were donated?

New item's (or) used..... A thrift shop is suppost to be selling the item's cheap for people to afford.....Not sky high retail store prices!

If that's the case you might as well buy the item new (at least if anything is broken you can return it at the retail store)... Thrift shops I have been visiting has the "sold as is".

What really made me write this article is I saw a brand new Christmas item (never opened) in one thrift shop priced at $15.00....While in the meantime a few blocks down that same exact item can be purchased for $19.99.

To me....If an item is sold for more then half the face value...It's not considered thrift store price!
Comments:11 Replies - Latest reply on 2012-04-19
Posted by Johanna on 2011-11-03:
Donated items or not, thrift stores still have overhead to contend with. Things such as lighting, heat or A/C, water, sewer have gone up quite a bit in recent years. If they want to be able to stay open and still raise about the same amount of money for the charities they represent, they have to raise prices. Additionally, if the shop is not staffed with volunteers (and there are some that are not), payroll comes into play as well (not that employee pay as risen much in recent years).

That being said, some thrift stores are cheaper than others. I can remember going to a church thrift shop and buying a shirt for $6 (normally about $12-15 in a retail environment). However, if you hop over to the Goodwill store across town, that same shirt could probably found for $3-5.
Posted by GenuineNerd on 2011-11-03:
I once saw a coffee maker at a Goodwill going for $15...about the same price as a cheap coffee maker (brand new) at a nearby Walgreens. As for clothing at thrift shops, I notice the prices going up as well...and not on just the so-called "designer labels". Shirts and pants that used to go for $2-$3 are going for $8-$10 or more. It does pay to watch the "color tag" discounts when you shop at thrift shops. Most of them discount a different colored tag or tags weekly. And many of the pricier thrift shops are those that are "for profit", with part of the profits going to a charity, such as Amvets, National Federation Of The Blind, Purple Heart Veterans, Volunteers Of America, etc. Once you factor in administrative costs, salaries/wages, and overhead/utilities, these organizations make only pennies on the dollar from these thrift shop sales. Even Goodwill and the Salvation Army have to deal with payrolls, utilities, and other overhead for their thrift shops. No more can you buy a shirt or a pair of pants for a dollar. Even thrift shop prices are higher now, but, for the most part, is still cheaper than buying the same items brand new.
Posted by At Your Service on 2011-11-03:
Thrifts don't have regular inventory. They can price at any price they like. If it's too high for you, the next customer may find it a good value.
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-11-03:
I donate a lot of clothes and some household items to Goodwill. From the sounds of this review, I need to open my own thrift shop, I could be rich! j/k..I agree with clutzy, the increase in all of those things is going to be seen in an increase in the price tags.

I do wonder about those brand new items never opened though, and agree with you I'd rather pay $4 bucks more and be able to take it back if needed then to save $4 for 'as is' condition.
Posted by D. on 2011-11-03:
Some thrift stores around here sell at 'antique' or 'collectible' prices. If the item is something I want, I buy it. Another reason prices went up is because of the gas prices for their trucks. Pretty much all of the Goodwills and trift stores here have special dicounts on certain days, or tag sales so it's best to try to shop on those days. But, I do agree the prices are sometimes not worth the item.
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-11-03:
I love antique shops!

I also love the new font in the reviews and comments...good job, Admin!!
Posted by Anonymous on 2011-11-04:
I go to Goodwill sometimes. The last time I was there, I saw a shirt for $10. Usually their shirts are $5. But, they have dollar days once a week and 50% off days. So it's still cheaper to shop there sometimes
Posted by andbran on 2011-11-04:
in my area we have a Thrift Town. about once a week they have a 30 or 50 percent off sales. mostly on clothes. and i usually go home with a good haul. i have two brothers in law i buy clothes for xmas from them.
Posted by GenuineNerd on 2011-11-05:
Most thrift shops keep their "pricier" items (typically jewelry, antiques, collector's items, and higher-end electronics) in display cases and/or behind a counter in one corner of the store. Also, pricier clothing (such as vintage jeans and designer labels) are kept behind the counter as well. This practice is most common at the "for profit" thrifts.
Posted by denosfan on 2012-04-19:
I have been on disability now for 2 yrs. I have a fixed income with none to spare. So I need the usualy clothes and shoes and go to the Goodwill. I could not believe how much they were on the merchandise. It should be illeagal for them the sale the stuff so much. Not only the Goodwill, but I have noticed, yardsales, flea markets,all of them were too pricey and I can get stuff brand new of clearence racks for cheaper in the malls and other shops. I think we should picked these places. Give me a break, I couldn't afford any of them! I am so mad. They are there to help out, who, themselves of course! The half day prices are still outrages! I would never recommend or give them another thing! I want to write the goverment about this matter!
Posted by D. on 2012-04-19:
Denosfan, I understand what you're saying...but the things that are sold at yard sales and flea markets are not the same as the things donated to Goodwill and Thirft stores. Yard sale and flea market things are sold by their owners and they try to get back some of their money and many of them sell because they need the money. As for Goodwills and thrift stores, those are all donations.

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