The holidays are approaching, and I have had to look out for nice thrift stores near me to donate the mountain of items in my closet which are still in very good condition but have not been used in a while.
Most of these thrift stores aren’t for profit-making. They are largely set up to support a charitable cause. So, if you are currently looking to donate or you are just searching for thrift stores near you to purchase nice items at a very cheap price, you’ll find help with my discovery.
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We live in a world where everyone has an abundance of something. And there are chances that you have some items in excess which you are willing to give out to thrift stores, at least to free up space for new ones.
Some items are discarded because there are too many of them. This is where thrift stores come in. They help to collect and resell these excesses at very cheap prices. These stores get what they sell through charity.
What Is A Thrift Store?
A Thrift store is a store or shop that deals in used (or second-hand) household items as a form of charity to a church or the general public. Items at the thrift stores are often far cheaper than those from regular retail outlets.
So, it is a good idea to patronize thrift stores if you want to save some money. You will find items that are in very good conditions, just as you’d find in some retail outlets.
But then, you might have to let go of high quality for the price because most of the items present in the thrift stores have already been used elsewhere. There is also a probability that you might find brand new stuff too! But that would be like a scavenger hunt.
So, whether you provide or buy your items from thrift stores, you are offering support for their mission, since they are largely non-profit ventures and are instituted for charity. But this doesn’t mean that you will not find profit-making thrift stores. However, you offer support to them when you patronize them.
How Do I Locate Thrift Stores Near Me?
For ease of locating thrift stores in any given location, use your desired map application – you can consider Google map – and search for “thrift stores.”
One of the benefits of making use of the map application to search for thrift stores is that it does not only give you the location of the store but also gives the direction.
Interestingly, when the map application is used, it submits the entire local stores in that area that the map recognizes as thrift stores. Besides, some stores may not be under the internet radar. You should check them out within your local shopping area.
You should find it convenient locating these stores around you. Especially if you live in a remote community with fewer shop-options to pick from.
The Best Thrift Stores Near Me
Living within the urban centers allows you to pick from multiple alternatives around you. Since every store has its uniqueness, it would be a good idea to visit these stores so you could have first-hand information and decide which is best for you.
Since donations also come in every time, the contents of the stores change from time to time – you could visit a store at a particular time and not find your expected choices, but your next visit could just make you smile broadly.
These listed thrift stores have stores scattered across the United States – you might just find one in your neighborhood.
The Society of St Vincent De Paul
The Society of St Vincent De Paul is a subsidiary of a Catholic organization that is focused on feeding, housing, healing, and clothing the people that do not have anywhere to go. They are available everywhere in the United States of America with volunteers in charge of these stores. Volunteers running these stores make it different from other stores around.
The Thriftshopper is a one-stop online shop for every of your thrift donations and shopping goals. Check out for vintage items, secondhand, and consignment shops directory on the web platform. You can also be part of their thrifting community and be more equipped with necessary information on thrift shopping.
ThredUp is one of the world’s largest online thrift stores you can find online. They boast of a mission to inspire a new wave of shoppers who would consider firsthand clothes first. You will find kids clothing and women’s clothes that are near brand new and at very much reduced rates. More importantly, most of the loved and enviable brands are available, with thousands of arrivals being welcomed daily!
Savers Or Value Village
The Saver/Value Village is another thrift store chain present almost everywhere in the country. Watch out, it’s referred to as Value Village in some areas. They are a profit-oriented business that partners with many non-profits organizations. They buy items from them and resell them to the public. However, their focus is on the disabled, kids, and people suffering from a disease.
Goodwill Thrift Stores
Goodwill Thrift Stores is one of the most popular and largest thrift stores in the United States. Surprisingly, they have also registered their presence in 12 other countries. It began operation in 1902. However, their focus is on assisting people to get the necessary skills in advancing their careers.
However, their donation centers and stores are available in every city within the US, so the chances are very high that you would locate one in your neighborhood.
Salvation Army Family Stores
Salvation Army Family Stores is a Christian charitable organization that focuses on the less-privileged. They provide accommodations, food, and relief for disaster survivors & rehabilitated drug addicts. Their thrift store is known as “family stores” – where they sell these donated items and the fund raised can be used to help the people in need. Also, their stores and donation centers are scattered around the country.
Community Thrift Stores Near Me
Many Community thrift stores are independently owned. It could be owned by churches who make use of proceeds to fund different things. Some private individuals can have a thrift store they run as a profit-oriented venture.
In some cases, owners of these thrift stores could use their profit to build homes for women recovering from addiction and other social vices. It is arranged in such a way that the store is run by the women recovering.
These local small thrift stores are highly recommended because they have better deals than the bigger stores. So, patronizing these stores means that you are supporting small businesses in your area.
Items You Should Look Out for In A Thrift Store
Thrift stores are nice for getting great deals. If you are just getting started with shopping at thrift stores near you, below are items you should look out for in one:
Books – Books are mostly donated to thrift stores. So, are you a lover of books? If yes, then you might want to shop at a thrift store because they sell for less than a dollar. It would usually be a good idea to patronize a thrift store and own the book rather than borrowing from a local library.
Clothing – This is one of the most common items donated to thrift stores. Good clothing is available at cheaper rates compared to what is available in the retail stores. However, you must be thorough as you inspect the clothing – to detect any defects.
Bikes – If you are a devout cyclist, you’ll very likely want to consider lightweight performance bikes to invest in. But as a casual rider, a well-structured single-speed bike that can be purchased at far much reduced rate at a local thrift store would serve.
Dishes – Dishes are among your best discovery in thrift stores – vintage dishes especially! I look out for brown drip pottery – they are my favorite picks. But then, do your research before shopping.
Maternity Wears – I am very sure you don’t want to pay heavily on clothes you will only be able to use for a short period of time. Thrift stores will help you find maternity outfits that are next-to-new, and have been donated by other mothers who have had to return to their pre-pregnancy wardrobes
More Items To Look Out For:
Furniture – Usually, the thrift store is a place to get great deals when you want to buy furniture. People often get rid of it to free up space, so they usually donate them. On the contrary, it could be donated because it was damaged – check thoroughly if you do not wish to embark on some repairs.
Salt and Pepper Shakers – With just 25 to 50 cents, you will be able to buy salt and pepper shakers at thrift stores. Well, except you’d rather some really fancy crystal shakers.
Toys – You’ll find really nice toys in the thrift stores around you. These vintage toys can be cleaned or bleached if they have hard surfaces.
Baby Clothes – Your baby will outgrow their tiny outfits very quickly, and you may find it a bit hard changing those adorable outfits within a short period. But thrift stores will help you achieve this, and also save so much money from your purchases. Ensure to select clothes that are not damaged and are in good condition.
Wooden Hangers – Wooden hangers are perfect for hanging heavy items like winter coats, and they can last for a very long time. And these hangers do not leave dents or creases in shirts or sweaters. They can however be quite costly when you are getting them in bulk!
But thanks to thrift stores. You are sure to get many with only a few pennies.
Kitchen Tools And Appliances – If you really wish to have a good novelty kitchen tool consider checking out a thrift store near you. Popcorn machines, bread making machines, and pasta makers are good items you’ll find. However, since you are not getting these items brand new, it is advised that you thoroughly clean them before you use them.
Here Are Items To Avoid At A Thrift Store
The following are the top pick of items to avoid at thrift stores;
Used Mattresses – Mattresses can have bed bugs and germs in them. Also, it’s often difficult getting rid of these bugs and germs. So, it might be a good idea to look for a new one at a discount. Besides, there might be someone who wants to get rid of one – this would enable you to find out about the history of the mattress.
Underwear – There are lots of options to pick from in a thrift store, but underwear is not one. Well, only if the under wears have never been used at all, and this would likely mean that they still carry tags on them.
Safety Equipment – It is usually not advisable to buy fairly used safety items like car seats and helmets. It is not advisable taking a risk with helmets because it can degrade and lose its integrity after use. Also, child safety gadgets and car seats should be avoided because something might have gone wrong with it, which can result in injury.
Linens – Mattresses, towels, blankets, sheets, and other linens are vulnerable to germs and attacks from bedbugs. And even though you can consider washing these items in hot water, that is not going to totally decontaminate them. You may want to consider the sale section of a department store instead for some less expensive linens.
Stuffed Animals – Stuffed animals can take different germs on them. You might wash it in the washing machine but this might result in damage.
How to Choose A Thrift Store Near Me For Donation
This could be a daunting task especially if you have a lot of thrift stores in your neighborhood. You could visit the website of the thrift store to know what they do with their money – this you can get from their mission statement. Besides, if they are not online, you could call them to inquire about what they stand for.
Having a good understanding of these thrift stores would help you make an informed decision on where your items should be donated. You could visit the store physically and be sure your money is channeled towards the right cause. In some cases, these stores have drop-off points for collecting the items.
Also, these items for donation can be written off on your tax. So, keep a tab on the things donated for proper documentation.
So, even though I donate to thrift stores near me, I still look out for opportunities to get great deals from the stores!
Some people have argued that it’s wrong to shop at thrift stores when you are not cash strapped but on the contrary, it isn’t. Usually, the sales made by the thrift stores serve as a life wire to the business, making them carry out their charitable responsibilities. So, the more their sales, the more they have to fund their charitable cause.
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