Thursday, December 16, 2010

Goodwill Pricing

Goodwill Industries International logo

Bloggers have talked awhile now about the inconsistencies with the prices at their Goodwill stores. I have run across this several times in my area. Part of what bothers me about the pricing issues is that I KNOW needy people are also shopping at these stores. I know that the money raised from these donated items do go to a good and worthy cause, yet I think they need to keep their shoppers in mind when pricing.

Recently, I was at the Goodwill in St. Lucie West Florida. A man and his wife were shopping for a table. In fact, it was a table I wanted but they’d beat me to it. I could hear their conversation and knew they were having money trouble. They tried to talk the manager down but the manager would not hear it. This couple needed a table. They didn’t just want it like me. He was disabled and without a job. None of this affected the manager. He just did not care. They did end up paying what the manager wanted, but I wondered at what cost to them?

Some of the stores are also not being honest. At this store, I had been watching an item. Those of us ‘thrifters’ that are regulars at Goodwill know how it works. They have a ticket that they price the item and mark the date. So this particular item, as I said, I was watching. I knew what I wanted to pay and, well, if it got away, that was the risk I took. However, two or three weeks out, the ticket changes. A new ticket was put on with that had that days date with the full price. I have also found that whether or not they haggle with you will depend upon on their mood. Some days they are happy as a clam and will state a fair or even great price.  Then you may come in a day that they have had a bad day and they won’t even consider it.

I know that they are not all this way. It seems just the ones that I shop at in South Florida are inconsistent, over-priced, etc.  I have come across a few great sites that I’d love to pass along to you in your quest for good deals. The first is The Thrift Shopper. Here you can search their locator for thrift stores in your area, there is a forum for discussion on all things thrift (they have even discussed the inconsistencies and over pricing), etc. It really is a great site. For those of you in the DC area, you lucky dogs, there is a great priced Goodwill and they have their own blog called DC Goodwill Fashionista. I say lucky dogs because, if you take a look at their blog, the prices are amazing. I am jealous :) If you google Goodwill, a lot of information comes up from their own websites to people discussing pricing. I came across one in which an employee was disheartened by Goodwill Industries. 

Although it can be frustrating, I will not stop my quest for beautiful things at a great price. I love ‘thrifting’.

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