We’re all aware that inflation is a serious problem nowadays, and it feels like everything is way more expensive than it ever has been. Whether you love to shop for fun, or just need to buy the essentials, I think we’re all feeling the strain on our wallets. Looking for ways to find what you need (or just want) without breaking the bank? Try secondhand shopping! Not only will buying secondhand ensure lower prices, but it also helps the environment by offsetting the carbon footprint of constantly buying newly manufactured goods. Here are a few great options for shopping secondhand:
The first place you probably think of when you hear secondhand shopping are thrift stores like Goodwill (did you know you can shop Goodwill finds online?), where you can buy goods that people have donated for an affordable price. It can take quite a while to sift through the racks and shelves, but if you’re dedicated, you could walk out with some really incredible finds at a great price! Check out this interactive map of thrift stores in Maryland!
Instead of waiting for people to donate their treasures to thrift stores, go right to the source! Especially now during the summer, all you have to do is walk or drive around on a Saturday morning and you’re sure to finds a “yard sale this way!” sign within a few minutes. Yard sales area fun way to find some unique items, but it can also be a great way to meet your neighbors and feel more connected with your community. Check your neighborhood website and social media pages to see if there are any organized yard sale events coming up soon!
Facebook Marketplace or Buy Nothing Groups
Speaking of social media, you can go secondhand shopping without even having to leave the house! If you have a Facebook account and you haven’t been looking through Facebook Marketplace, you are seriously missing out. Marketplace is especially great for furniture and home goods (over half of the furniture in my house is from Marketplace). Oftentimes you will have to go pick up your purchase, but some sellers will even offer delivery service with an extra fee.
Another great Facebook feature are “Buy Nothing” groups. They are usually location-specific groups where people will offer and ask for certain goods they may need or want. The main rule? You can’t ask for any money in exchange. Everything in these groups must be offered for free, which is a fantastic system that allows people in the same community to support each other without any financial burden. Try looking up “[your town/neighborhood] buy nothing group” on Facebook, and if you can’t find one, go ahead and make one! Be the change you want to see!
Other Social Media/Websites
Nextdoor – social media platform for neighborhood-specific communication. Their “Finds” feature works very similarly to Facebook Marketplace
Poshmark – a great place to buy and sell secondhand clothes online. I personally have not used this service, but a few of my friends swear by it!
Happy shopping, my friends! Your wallet and the environment will thank you!