I love off-price retailers, specifically T.J. Maxx, Home Goods & Marshall's. They are my favorite stores by far and great places to score good deals. Whenever I show friends the things that I find there, I get, "what? you must have a better store than me, our T.J. Maxx sucks" or "how do you find stuff there?" or "not fair! you're so lucky!" Just the other day I was talking to friends who think our local T.J. is horrible. I was blown away. What?!?! The fact is, these stores generally carry most of the same merchandise - they're all owned by TJX Companies. Even though I found Kate Spade Lenox at my store and you don't see any at yours, doesn't mean it won't be there tomorrow. The thing is, you just have to know what you're doing to make the most of your shopping trip. If you saunter into one of these stores unprepared, and think tons of amazing finds will just fall into your cart, you will leave disappointed. Here's a few of my secrets that will help you find all the best deals:
Know Designer Brands:
This tip is probably the best. Even after all these years of being a loyal customer, I continue to be amazed at the brands these stores carry. And I'm not just referring to clothing brands. Everything from Melissa & Doug toys, Le Crueset cast iron pots, Betsey Johnson Lingerie, Coach purses and Snapware kitchen storage containers. The list goes on.
These stores get up to 3 or 4 shipments a week. That can mean over 10,000 new items. That means if you are looking for a decorative chair and couldn't find anything, don't write the store off. It is not uncommon for me to go back to a store a week later, and find what appears to be a completely different store. It's amazing!
Ask the manager when their shipments come in. Don't feel weird either because you definitely won't be the first person to have asked that question. Locally, shipments come in on Wednesdays here and there is a large group of people who are there regularly Wednesday afternoons or Thursday mornings to check out the new goods.
Walk Down All The Aisles:
Become familiar with the store. Walk slowly, look at everything and don't be afraid to rifle through things. I have found so many things by looking under or behind other items.
Shop Here First:
At any given time most people have a list of things they need or will need in the near future. Whether it's workout clothes, a new pillow or even olive oil... check these stores first! Especially if you don't absolutely need the item asap. Good things come to those who wait... and shop at T.J. Maxx. THEY HAVE EVERYTHING!!! I bought some baby items at Babies R Us and later found the exact same products at T.J. for 30% cheaper.
These tips have worked for me, hope something here helps. Have you scored big at an off-price retailer? I'd love to hear about it!