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View Full Version : RIP Bargain Shoppe



Terry Yager
April 1st, 2005, 06:04 PM
Went to my favorite thrift store today, and they were closed! I mean, really closed -- permanently. Doors locked, store emptied, the works. No more GoodWill Bargain Shoppe! (You know -- the place where they dump all the junque, like old computers and such). AAAARRRRRRRRGH!

--T

joe sixpack
April 1st, 2005, 08:10 PM
Ha the ones in my area are worthless / greedy anyway.
Much better check out http://www.freecycle.org
it'a group of people in a local area that give away stuff to each other
they are all over and not just in the US. it's a great way to pick up old stuff
and also give away stuff you dont want but dont want to end up in the trash.

i still checkout the thrift store but not as often. im really starting to get turned
off with them. this one down the street from me has a locked dumpster full of
items going to the local dump. i mean stacked 3 feet above the top.
it makes me sick that they would rather they go into the landfill then to
give them away to people and im not just talking computer im talking about
shirts, pants, books, everything yet i walk in and try to buy a computer repair
book from 1983 and they want to charge me 5bucks just because it's 300pages.
the stores in my area are run very much like a business. they wear uniforms with name tags.
they toss anything that is not in tiptop shape. there are cameras out the yinyang & they're over priced.
My sister was getting new couch a few months ago and we tried to give the old one
away to a thrift store down the road. it was a very good couch and in good shape the only thing wrong
with it was a small snag about the size of a dime on the right arm rest. they said they wouldnt take it.
So we took it to a friend house she lives in a apt complex we sat it out next
to the dumpster. then we went inside to visit an hour later we left, the couch was gone.

thifts stores try to make to much money on each item what they need to
do is try and sell as much as they can "quick turnover" they have almost
no overhead. staff, electricty, heat/cool
they almost never go pickup an item and they get special breaks from the
state and federal government.
the crap is givin to them for free what is there to lose?
as it stands now a lot of times i wont buy something because it's over priced
and the stuff im intrested in is odd ball shit that only people on this board would
be intrested in. the mass public does not care!
so if i dont buy it chances are its going to end up in the trash and what money
did they make on it? nothing!

Terry Yager
April 2nd, 2005, 08:18 AM
I did go to the other thrift shop yesterday and bought a bag-o-books for a buck.
My ex-wife used to manage thrift stores, first at St. Vinnie's (charity), and then at another, privately-owned, for-profit place. The for-profit place had to buy thier stuff, in bulk, by the truckload, sight unseen, so if there's nothing but junk in the truck, they're screwed. The nut in that place was $10,000.00/week, so yes, there are operating costs. (They did have a pretty choice location, inside a major mall). They ended up going bankrupt after five years, but after they closed, another thrift store opened in the same location, so there must still be some money to be made there.

joe sixpack
April 2nd, 2005, 09:03 AM
must be nice where you live in my area a lot of times something in
the junk store i can get new for about 20% more. I buy books more then
anything else from junk stores. The ones in my area start at 2bucks paperback 3bucks hardback per book
and work there way up based on page count. several in my area have there own
buildings that they "own" in fact one had there's built from the ground up about 5years ago.
all the junk stores im speaking of are not private for profit.

yes i know they have bills to pay but in my area they charge for things like
they are a major chain. it never use to be like this it's happend in the last
4 or 5 years. There is no reason to try and sell that pentium 100 for 80 bucks
they paid nothing for it. not to mention 80bucks is way beyond it's worth.
not long ago i was looking for books and ran across a poster in a frame.
they was asking 10bucks for it. or a pressed wood desk i seen i kinda liked
they wanted 165 for it. FOR PRESSED WOOD! it prob cost less then that new!.

but it's all a moot point now anyway as freecycle is where it's at you get stuff
you give stuff and best of all it keeps it out of the landfill.

Terry Yager
April 2nd, 2005, 09:18 AM
Of the three charity thrift stores in my area, St. Vincent dePaul uses it's "profits" to run a free soup kitchen, Goodwill runs a training center so that handicapped people can get off the Dole and into the workforce, and The Salvation Army runs a Men's Shelter, where destitute men can stay for free. None of these services are free, so I don't begrudge them the money they make off of me. If the price is too high, I just don't buy it, but someone else usually does. That's the reason they price things so high -- some fool will buy it for that price, and leave feeling like they got a good deal.

--T

joe sixpack
April 2nd, 2005, 09:34 AM
i dont buy it if it's too high and no at least in my area i see the same
stuff sitting there for weeks, the one i was telling you about 3feet
of stuff in there dumpster at the end of everymonth if the item has
not sold thats where it goes.

i do not know what the one's in my area run, im not trying to hold out on them.
but they also have to be reasonable, the stuff is as-is and in unknown condition
im not going to buy it for near "retail" price. some of the stuff such as books
have pricetags on them from the original store a lot of times the store sold
the book for less then they are asking. i use to buy 10books at a time when
they was 50cents paper back & 1.00 for hardbacks (all) or 3 paperbacks for
1.00, large computer books the ones that are like 1200 pages even softback
i see marked for as much as 14 or 15 bucks. Example: about a year ago
i bought a MCSE NT4 server book for 2bucks. just a few months ago i seen
the same book for 6.99.

they have gotten very keen on charging high prices on anything computer to do with computers.

would you pay 1.50 for a used phone cord in a ziplock bag? i can go to "big lots" not sure if
you have those but they sell discounted stuff that is being clearanced out
of stores. for 1buck + tax and it's new.

Terry Yager
April 2nd, 2005, 12:33 PM
We have BigLot stores here to, but I always buy my phone supplies from one the many "Dollar Stores" that have sprung up over the past few years. They always have a good selection of (formerly) hard-to-find telephone adaptors, etc.
When my ex was working at the for-profit store, one of her pet peeves was people who would bitch about the prices, and use the same argument you did, "it didn't cost you anything". She would gently reassure them that indeed, they paid for all thier merchandise. These are the same people who will blow $500.00 at the casino and never think twice about it. (Really, I heard it with my own ears). One day I overheard this (well-dressed, probably courtesy of a thrift store) lady bragging to her shopping companion about how much $$$ she lost on her last casino visit. Later, the same woman almost had the cashier in tears, because she couldn't mark down the price on something (cashiers aren't allowed to mark down, you hafta find a manager to do that). Made me sick just watching. Another thing I hate is theft! While at the Sally yesterday, I found a Compaq laptop case with a $55. price tag on it. Naturally, I was curious, so I asked the cashier, who told me that there had been a laptop with it earlier that day. After a thorough search of the store, we had to conclude that someone had stolen it, since the cashier knew he hadn't sold it. I mean, how low will some people go?
Another thing to keep in mind is that even the non-profit stores have to buy some of thier merchandise, direct donations are only a portion of what they take in. There's a big clearing-house in Detroit, where goods are auctioned off, and all the local thrift stores buy there. (Did'ja ever find, like, a half-a-set of encyclopedia at one store, then see the other half at a totally different store?) Anyways, the clearing-house sells off stuff that is donated to charities that don't have a retail outlet of thier own. (The American Cancer Society is probably thier biggest seller). When they auction it off, all that the buyer knows is that they are buying a trailer full of stuff. They may be allowed to open the doors and see what is visible, but digging thru it is a no-no.

--T

barryp
April 2nd, 2005, 02:57 PM
Much better check out http://www.freecycle.org
it'a group of people in a local area that give away stuff to each other



I joined my local group for a while, but they mainly asked for stuff, givers were in the minority. So I left.

joe sixpack
April 2nd, 2005, 09:58 PM
When my ex was working at the for-profit store, one of her pet peeves was people who would bitch about the prices, and use the same argument you did, "it didn't cost you anything".
She would gently reassure them that indeed, they paid for all thier merchandise.
"for-profit" & "non-profit" is not the same. the ones i know about are all "non-profit" i know this much for fact.


These are the same people who will blow $500.00 at the casino and never think twice about it. (Really, I heard it with my own ears). One day I overheard this (well-dressed, probably courtesy of a thrift store) lady bragging to her shopping companion about how much $$$ she lost on her last casino visit. Later, the same woman almost had the cashier in tears, because she couldn't mark down the price on something (cashiers aren't allowed to mark down, you hafta find a manager to do that). Made me sick just watching.

i would'nt know what to do if i had 500bucks in hand.
i've never asked for a mark down i dont bitch i just dont buy.


Another thing I hate is theft! While at the Sally yesterday, I found a Compaq laptop case with a $55. price tag on it. Naturally, I was curious, so I asked the cashier, who told me that there had been a laptop with it earlier that day. After a thorough search of the store, we had to conclude that someone had stolen it, since the cashier knew he hadn't sold it. I mean, how low will some people go?

i agree. i've never stole from a junk store, besides it would hardly be worth it. again i just dont buy no skin off my nose.


Another thing to keep in mind is that even the non-profit stores have to buy some of thier merchandise, direct donations are only a portion of what they take in. There's a big clearing-house in Detroit, where goods are auctioned off, and all the local thrift stores buy there. (Did'ja ever find, like, a half-a-set of encyclopedia at one store, then see the other half at a totally different store?) Anyways, the clearing-house sells off stuff that is donated to charities that don't have a retail outlet of thier own. (The American Cancer Society is probably thier biggest seller). When they auction it off, all that the buyer knows is that they are buying a trailer full of stuff. They may be allowed to open the doors and see what is visible, but digging thru it is a no-no.

i've not noticed it, i can't say or not say that they do or dont do that here.
however several of the junk stores im talking about have very large piles
of stuff outside in and near the collection box(s)

no matter where they get there stuff

I did go to the other thrift shop yesterday and bought a bag-o-books for a buck. if i could get just one book for a buck this would not even be a issue with me.
im unsure where you live but unless your local economy is very different
sounds like your getting a pretty good deal next to the prices i see.

TO barryp
yea in my area i would say 50% of the messages a day are for wanted items
some are very reasonable while a lot are just greedy, a lot of people asking
for big ticket items like cars, new computers (i mean really new like p4's)
xbox's and tv's
the only wanted ad i've ever posted was for 5.25 disks and people was
happy even greatful that i came to get those relics.
other wise i just wait untill someone is getting rid of something old
and i am very open and honest about what i want the items for and even
suggest they give it to someone who has nothing rather then myself
and to think of me as a "before it hit's the trash" guy.
the local group here has grown 108% since i joined 6 months ago.
we have a rule of 1 wanted ad per week per member. still there is a lot of
people giving away stuff and even business's are starting to recycle there
systems using freecycle minus the hdd's of course.

even if your not planing on getting anything it's a good way to give away stuff
i've done it several times with good out comes in all cases twice i was
able to give several semi complete computers to people going to tech school.

It's one of the reasons i find freecycle so attractive over junk stores.

Mad-Mike
April 4th, 2005, 10:21 AM
That's one of the very very very few things I'm probably going to miss when I move to the northwest is the thrift stores we have down here. We have such a huge number and such diversity that if one place pisses you off, you have another to run to.

Our Salvation Army thrift just moved to a new location (into an old Wal-Mart building of all places), I still have yet to check that place out, I might do it this week. I remember when they moved, the guy gave me 3 IBM EduQuests for $8.00. The one thing I've learned about thrifts is when they are going to move or going out of business, and have found stuff they don't need or have had for awhile that has not sold, some of it they will give to you. I've got a whole stack of keyboards, several pieces of software, a printer, 3 monitors, a couple mice, all for about $5.00 total because it had been there so long.

Down from where they used to be is a store run by a nice old lady. I bought a decent Zenith Data Systems 1490 VGA monitor for $2.00. Bought a Citizen GSX color DOT Matrix printer for $1.50. She sold me an entire Pentium Pro 200 for $4.00 complete with keyboard and monitor!!! I keep on going back with prices like that. She hardly ever has stuff for computers, but when she does, it's cheap but decent.

Our Goodwill is schitzophrenic when it comes to pricing computer products. At one time they had a pile of monitors, including a 17" SVGA, all marked at $10. However, they had an IBM PS/Valuepoint 486 with Windows 3.1 on it for $59.00, for just the computer. Go figure. However I can't complain, I got a Belkin 6 port AT OmniView KVM for $2.50 there.

Another downer is a woman who's shop is open only on thursday-saturday. Every time I have been in there if she has a computer anything it's going to be over $50.00! I was once there with a friend, we fixed up a Pentium 1, and instead of selling it for $90 like she said she was going to do, she decided to keep it and offer us her IBM PS/2 Model 55Z 286 for $130!!! Now if that's not nuts I don't know what is. And heck, she would not even let us see it (the PS/2) up close (rolls eyes).

Then there a retired dude on the main drag who apparently once was a used computer store. If nobody had told me I would have not had an idea he was even there. I come by and fix stuff for him and he usually gives me parts and stuff for free. He has a ton of computer stuff to get rid of. Lots of old Macintosh, Pentium 1, a few 486's, and once in awhile he keeps an 8088 or 286 around. Last time I fixed something for him he gave me somewhere in the neighborhood of 20-40 30 pin SIMMS of various capacities. He's got a ton of monitors starting at $20.00. That has to be my favorite store. I definatley don't mind repairing old computers for a discount.

The one place in town that has huge prices is the Mission Thrift store. It's kind of like a Baptist thrift shop if you will. They have hymns and bible verses written on the walls over there, the place is clean and kempt. When they first opened I wondered how they would stay in business because the two cute girls at the counter sold me and a friend a pile of keyboards big enough to warrant half a shopping cart, as well as an IBM PS/2 Model 35SX, and mice, monitors, and so on, for about $10-15 for everything. Now I come in there, whoever does the pricing is insane. I went in there, they had a white box 486 for $40.00, and it had a note on it saying "Needs Programmed". Then there was a Pentium II for $50.00 on the desk that was running but had no monitor attached to it for some reason, then next to it, hooked up to a monitor, was a Packard Bell Legend 286....now get this.....the price tag on the Packard Hell was SEVENTY DOLLARS that's right $70.00! W/O Monitor, or keyboard, or mouse. and it had a slow Windows 3.1 install on it. Needless to say, I hardly ever shop there anymore.

I don't know what thrifts are like up around the Washington areas though. Maybe because of all the IT industry up there there might be a good place to hunt for strange white box clones? Around here the most common stuff are old Packard Bells, IBMs (the saving grace), and post 1988 Compaq Deskpro, Prolinea, and Presario. It seems if it has a recognizable name it's worth more though. Anyway, enough of my yakkin...