What To Look For In Thrift Stores, According To Pros

What To Look For in Thrift Stores

OK, so you’ve decided to head down to a thrift store to snag a bargain and maybe even turn your thrift store finds into some extra cash.

But what do you look for in thrift shops that might have good resale value or that you can be sure is the “good stuff” for your own use?

We’ve compiled a list of key items that you should pay special attention to in thrift stores if you want to get the most out of your thrifting experience.

Items To Look For In Your Local Thrift Shop

We confess we’re addicted to thrift stores and even though they’re all the rage at the moment, you can find some seriously awesome stuff in a thrift store if you know what to look for.

You should also combine these ideas with our sustainable thrift shopping tips and tricks for the best results.

Vintage Board Games

Once you’ve played your vintage board game, you can sell it on eBay for between $30 and $300!

You’re not likely to find these in any of the more popular online thrift stores because they know about the value of these things. However, local stores are great for finding vintage games.

If the game is complete, it will be worth more than if it has missing parts but even incomplete games are worth something as they can be broken up and sold for parts.

Vintage Pyrex

Yes, from low-cost cookware to a highly collectible item – many people don’t know it but Vintage Pyrex can be worth a fortune and even a single piece from a set can fetch a pretty penny thanks to collectors trying to complete sets themselves.

You can get an idea about the Pyrex market at PyrexLove. Just remember to check for the Pyrex stamp of authenticity before you buy anything.

Maternity Clothes

Maternity clothing and, indeed, baby clothes are often sold at thrift stores for ridiculously low amounts.

Now this means you can use the thrift store to help you get through pregnancy and celebrate the arrival of your little ones without breaking the bank and it also means, you can often resell the items that you find for a very tasty profit.

These clothes are super expensive to buy new and eBay has a super busy marketplace for them.

Home Decor

Thrift stores are great for home decor items and we often turn to them for holiday decor if we can’t find what we want in local garage sales before the holidays arrive.

Many of the things you find can also be sold on for a nice profit (and this is especially true in a college town where everyone is on a budget) as they can be bought for very little in the store.

Look for picture frames, wall hanging, lighting, etc. if you want to buy thrifted items that are easy to sell.


Books sell well online, they’re much cheaper than items like costume jewelry in the store and people absolutely love to read in any kind of economic condition.

You will get a great price in your local Goodwill or similar stores for books and once you’ve read them, you can sell them on eBay or Amazon for a profit (or, at least, enough to get your money back).

And if you want valuable things, look out for first editions, box sets, art books, comics, photography books, etc. as they tend to sell better and can make your money work harder for you.

Designer Clothing

Buying clothing from thrift stores to resell is a great idea – it’s one of the reasons we love thrifting so much, you can get an amazing wardrobe and then sell it on for a profit!

The secret to selling clothes for the most money is great photographs and lots of detail about the brand, material, etc.

Vintage Glassware

Vintage glassware is super easy to sell and much less problematic than say power tools which need to be properly tested before they can be sold.

Just watch out for shipping costs. Glass requires careful packing and that adds substantially to the weight of parcels.


One of the great tips for making money on your thrifting is to buy furniture.

You can use it around the house for a bit, and when you’re bored, it’s easy to sell for a profit – particularly if you don’t mind restoring it a little.

We’ve known people to buy furniture for as little as $5, give it a quick lick of paint and then sell it for $100+!

Vintage Toys

Nostalgia sells and after you (or your kids) have played with the vintage toys, they can make serious money when sold on eBay.

Good items include cars, train sets, Star Wars, etc.


It’s not the most common find but silverware is often cheap when you do find it and as long as you check the hallmarks are legit, you can almost always sell it for a profit (or keep it at home because it looks awesome).

Final Thoughts On Making The Most Out Of Your Local Thrift Store

It’s not often you can buy things that are decent quality, use them, save money in the first place and then make money in the future, is it?

Yet, if you get into thrifting, that’s something you can do every day! And who doesn’t like bargains and having more money?