Tips on shopping affordably


Emmy Johnson, Writer

Splurging on an overpriced item in a cute boutique or store is an easy feat, but after splurging it’s easy to regret the purchase that was made. Shopping for affordable items that last is a more reasonable way to go, but starting out on this tactic is hard, and overspending is a tricky habit to break. For affordable shopping options, there are some listed below.


Buying from second-hand places with low prices and sales is a good way to feed the need to shop while getting clothing and other necessities. Goodwill has been known for having ‘color sales’ where a certain color of clothes is on sale or items (such as shirts, sweaters, pants, kids clothes and toys, etc) are on sale as well. 

“Honestly thrifting and consignment shopping is so much more fun and easier than buying from places like JCPenny, where I find myself overspending. But thrifting is different, I can buy what I need for low prices or get something for my bedroom,” said Molly Vaughan, a sophomore at Powers High school.

Places like the Salvation Army and flea markets are also ways to buy items in bulk for cheap prices. Flea markets are known for their extremely low prices and items that are easy to reinvent or clean, if not already in good condition. However, to find good clothes at flea markets, consumers need time and energy to look through them. The Salvation Army will take old clothes, books, music and bedding, instead of them going to waste.

Farmers Markets

Overspending produce is also quite common. Farmers markets are a great way to buy what’s needed for low prices, and it supports local businesses. Farmers markets in Detroit, Genesis, Brighton, Flint or Ann Arbor are open year round. While Fenton has a summer one open during the weekend once a year, both options of produce you can hand pick yourself.

Farmers that own certain stations also offer sales on their products when in season, so checking what fruits, game and vegetables are in season can save money. Other farmers that make jams, preserves, pies, breads and other pastries offer different sizes to buy from. 

Places that make juices, kombucha, cocktail mixtures and teas often have sales for products that are in season. For example, black tea is popular in the winter, tea based on spices like chai are popular in fall, and spring can be known for green tea, lavender tea and rose tea. At these times of the year is when the teas will be most popular.


Unlike thrifting, TjMaxx gets products directly from the source or accepts donations from people with unused products. TjMaxx buys or receives designer clothes, purses, perfumes, shoes, underwear and toys that they later restock for cheap and sell to the public. Buying from TjMaxx makes shopping easier; buying designer products is made affordable at Tjmaxx.

“We get a lot of shoppers here that saw something they liked in a store that was too expensive, so they come here looking for it at a cheaper price,” Stephanie Bauhl, a worker at Tjmaxx, said. ”It reminds me of online stores that resell stuff, places like Ebay or Aliexpress, but it’s in your neighborhood or city.”

Online Retailers

There are many websites that allow users to buy and sell items from one another, like Ebay, Depop, Aliexpress, Etsy, Poshmark and more. These items may be used or new, and are often marked down to resale prices.

Websites like Depop, Etsy and Poshmark are places where users can list items (usually clothing) and sell them, as well as buy from other retailers. Bundles have also become increasingly popular, where buyers get a full outfit in your style with accessories, shoes and other things for low resale prices or commission for pieces of costume clothes, jewelry or shoes. 

Unlike Depop, Aliexpress caters to a widespread range of products along with clothes varying in prices, consumers can buy furniture, bedspreads, art pieces, silverware and more at the prices that sellers mark it as.