As you shop for fall, there are many ways you can save money as you update your wardrobe. A little careful thought and planning can go a long way, as can common sense that often becomes lost in the tantalizing glitter and glitz of department store displays. We’ve all made mistakes we regret. How often have we gone to the store to buy a new pair of jeans and stopped at an attractive display to save 80% off something we will never use? We all have a tendency to look through the sale racks, and almost invariably find something that looks too good to be true at a price too good to pass up. Learn to be the winner rather than the victim of advertising. Thrifty fashion shopping tips you may find helpful as you shop this fall include:
- Avoid impulse buying. Impulse buying is the biggest single cause of overspending and spending thoughtlessly. Buy only what you went shopping for and don’t fall prey to tempting displays and bright sale signs.
- Shop with a well thought out list. Plan your shopping in advance, considering what you really need and want to buy.
- Compare sales and specials before leaving home. Use newspapers, television advertisements and the internet to look for the best deals.
- Always try on clothing before purchasing it. If something doesn’t fit well and isn’t comfortable, don’t buy it. Even if it can be returned, you’ve lost time and travel.
- Keep receipts in case you need to return items. Most stores will not refund your money, credit back your credit card or even give you store credit with your receipt.
- Never remove tags until you are sure you will keep the item. Items without tags can generally not be returned and will end up being given away or lost in the back of your closet.
- Do not buy what you do not need and will not use. If an item will not be used, it isn’t worth spending your money on.
- If something seems too good to be true, it probably is. Stores often have come-on sales and loss leaders to attract customers. One particular item may really be too good to be true, but its intent is to lure you to purchase other items as well.
- Use coupons and shopping passes whenever possible. Look through the Sunday newspapers, magazines and store fliers to clip coupons. Many department store websites have coupons you can print and take with you or promo codes you can use when you shop online.
- Use Walmart’s and other stores’ price match guarantees. If you find a lower price on the same item somewhere else, show them and they will match it. Bring the advertisement with you to prove your point.
- Use department store credit cards cautiously – it’s easy to charge items but sometimes difficult to pay the bill. Everything you charge must eventually be paid for. Shopping can be fun, but stretching your budget to pay a bill or paying only the minimum due can be discouraging.
- You may save by applying for a store credit card. This is usually a one-time only offer, so use it judiciously.
- Ask if a flawed item might be discounted. Generally you can receive a discount of twenty to thirty-five percent off an item that has fallen on the floor, has a pulled thread, or is missing a small piece. .
- Shop end of season sales for the lowest possible prices. Right now is the best time to stock up on camis and tanks to layer throughout the year. If you need a new bathing suit or a pair of shorts, get them now while they are on final clearance.
- Always ask about senior, military and other discounts. You can often save 10% or more by shopping on particular days of the week or by showing your military, student or senior citizen card.
- Use Reward Points, store cash, and other store credits. These build up every time you shop and pay off cash or store credit that’s as good as extra money in your wallet.
Shop smart as you transition into fall. Your wardrobe and budget will both improve and you won’t be left with items you never meant to buy or bills you can’t afford to pay. It may take a little practice, but will eventually become second nature and, the more often you follow these tips, the easier it will become.
As always, maximize your style and minimize your spending~