True Bargain Hunters Need to Know This Online Shopping Tip

True Bargain Hunters Need to Know This Online Shopping Tip

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Carrie McBride
Feb 25, 2018
(Image credit: Liz Calka)

Some people are very straightforward shoppers — they know what they want and they don't want to spend a lot of time or mental energy getting it. For the rest of us, shopping is a game. A game we want to win. We'll gladly spend hours paging through websites, weighing all our options and cross checking everywhere for the best price. We're convinced there are treasures hiding in the clearance aisle and we've never passed up a perusal of the as-is section. If this sounds like you, let me let you in on another shopping strategy to keep in your back pocket.

Have you heard of "open box"? It means that a customer ordered something, decided it wasn't what they had in mind and then returned it. The returns department then inspects it to ensure it's in good condition and then they offer it for sale again at a reduced price. So it's a new, unused item that, typically, has been opened or unboxed. (Although I've bought open box items over the years and many haven't been opened at all.)

Open box sales are most common in retail electronics (Best Buy and Walmart have robust offerings in this category worth checking out) but there are also home goods stores with open box sections on their websites including Wayfair, Bellacor, Lumens and Lamps Plus (these lighting stores sell furniture and decor, too, if you didn't know).

Below are some current open box sales which will give you an idea of the savings. You can see that they range from 25-67% off in my samples. The downside to open box is that the offerings are unpredictable. You may find something you love, but it's best as a fun place to check in rather than likely to yield a specific item on your list. Also inventory can change from day to day and there is usually only one piece offered at that price — so act quickly if you want to buy.

(Image credit: Wayfair)

Carolos Pouf at Wayfair, $160.99 Open Box Price: $120.74 (25% Off)

(Image credit: Bellacor)

Moe's Home Collection Godenza Walnut 15-Inch Coffee Table at Bellacor, $645.12 Open Box Price: $323.97 (67% off)

(Image credit: Bellacor)

Uttermost Crofton Antique Gold Mirror at Bellacor, $257 Open Box Price: $129.97 (52% off)

(Image credit: Lumens)

Kartell Small Fly Pendant (Cardinal Red) at Lumens, $305 Open Box Price: $178.29 (42% off)

(Image credit: Wayfair)

Cordele Sofa at Wayfair, $569.99 Open Box Price: $427.49 (25% Off)

(Image credit: Wayfair)

Yoan 3 Piece Bistro Set at Wayfair, $141.99 Open Box Price: $106.49 (25% off)

(Image credit: Lumens)

Acapulco Chair at Lumens, $398 Open Box Price: $265.87 (33% off)

(Image credit: Wayfair)

Aidan 29.75" Bar Stool at Wayfair, $225.99 Open Box Price: $105 (54% off)

(Image credit: Wayfair)

Leominster Upholstered Platform Bed at Wayfair, $564.99 Open Box Price: $209.99 (63% Off)

(Image credit: Lumens)

Philippe Starck Prince AHA Stool (Pigeon) at Lumens, $125 Open Box Price: $78.33 (37% off)

(Image credit: Wayfair)

Stanger Accent Stacking Patio Dining Chair at Wayfair, $369.99 Open Box Price: $148 (60% off)

(Image credit: Wayfair)
Cottage Bloom Hexagon Pot Planter at Wayfair, $49.99 Open Box Price: $25 (50% off)
(Image credit: Wayfair)

Bindera 3 Drawer Nightstand at Wayfair, $267.99 Open Box Price: $200.99 (25% off)

Do you know of other good sources for open box deals? Let us know in the comments.

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