Save money: the best deals are off the beaten path

Posted on September 1, 2013

When looking for home décor, refurbished furniture, and antiques, the best deals are found away from the beaten path. Perhaps that’s a no-brainer. But that money-saving tip came alive for me today.

My sister-in-law is a photographer, and her clients love her for many reasons, one being that she owns great props for them to use in photos. Through facebook group connections, she discovered a family that runs a store out of their home of all their great finds. It’s reminiscent of the show American Pickers. Sarah loves to buy items from them for props.

Sarah, my mother-in-law, and I loaded into her SUV and drove an hour to get to this store. As we drove deeper and deeper into the country, seeing only horses and white-picket fences zoom by, I wondered where she was taking us. A garage-sale-like sign pointed up a driveway towards a house that was hidden by dense trees. This was The Barn. As we drove closer, it was surprising to see all the items displayed on the lawn and in a shop so far out in the country. It turned out to be a great place to find cute pieces at great prices.

Sarah bought an awesome red tricycle and kids’ bench, and I got a pretty mirror. After eating Chinese food for lunch, Sarah showed us another store she likes with similar kinds of pieces at a main-street location much closer to her house. This place was great, too! It makes me wish I knew how to buy old pieces from garage sales and then paint them to look trendy and nice. But the prices? Not terrible … but still, twice as much as The Barn’s prices.

So the lesson is to keep your eyes open for less-centralized stores that spend less on overhead costs. They are harder to find, and take a little longer to get to, but it may be worth it!


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