I had a close call yesterday! No, it wasn’t an accident or anything serious like that. I went shopping in the Target back to school clearance section. I’d been keeping an eye on a couple of items and knew that the 30% markdown would soon increase to at least 50% and later increase yet again to 75%! I wanted to wait, simply because I was in no hurry to buy the new backpack and thermoses. And, when I was in the store just a few days prior, there seemed to be plenty of the items I wanted.
Then, my daughter decided she really, really needed her new Sofia the First backpack for her first day of a class she is taking. I figured I could go ahead and buy the backpack and then check back on the thermoses later in the week, in hopes that I’d get a better deal with time.
Well, that is NOT what happened! When I glanced over at the thermoses, there were plenty of the Sofia thermos we had picked out for my daughter but none of the Planes thermos my son liked. None! So much for waiting! I went ahead and picked up the girly one and decided to just get a plain one for my son. But, to do that, I had to go to the kitchen section. As I looked at all the plain, very grown up-looking thermoses, I realized that there was one, just one, Planes thermos completely out of place and in the wrong section! Thankfully, I got it and got the clearance price $7.49 (regularly $14.99). That was a very close call. And, it served as a reminder of the risk you can run waiting for items to get more deeply discounted. You may lose your great deal to all the people happy to get a good deal.
Here are a few more tips to keep in mind when shopping clearance:
Budget. Make sure you have a budget in mind. It’s easy to spend much more than you need when you see mark downs. But, getting good deals doesn’t take away from the reality that you are still spending money!
Check Your Receipt. Sometimes the clearance prices don’t show up at the register. So, be sure to check your receipt before you leave the store to make sure you get the deal you thought you were getting.
Don’t Buy What You Don’t Need. It seems like common sense. But, something about trying to save money and discovering great deals turns an I-can’t-miss-this-deal switch on in your brain. But, if you don’t need it or don’t need much of whatever “it” is, then just don’t buy it. If you’ve made the mistake and bought too much, return what you don’t need.
Do you impose any limits on yourself when shopping clearance?
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