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Value Village: Are the prices too high?

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Aug 14, 2012
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Value Village is completely nuts. They price garbage at retail.
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turkey9000 wrote:
Aug 18th, 2014 9:41 am
Value Village is completely nuts. They price garbage at retail.
The scary part is that they receive twice as much stuff that's even MORE garbage than the stuff they actually end up selling :lol:
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Aug 4, 2014
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uber_shnitz wrote:
Aug 18th, 2014 9:39 am
As someone who used to work there, I'll say that management has a set pricing scale on some items such as books/DVDs regardless of anything else. The rest is subjective and I would often lower the price of items I was in control of (namely the furniture and "non-fancy" electronics section) just to get them out of the store; it's amazing how many people treat VV and thrift stores as dumping grounds so on average, I wanted donated stuff in and out of the store within 48h (usually after that time frame, we'd start literally throwing stuff out because of the overload of junk).

VV has those 50% off days which makes their prices a bit more bearable but I mean, it's not a guaranteed bargain no.
So you are an insider? Do you know how much of the stuff they receive is dropped off the store versus them picking it up somewhere? When people drop off stuff, do they go through any of it and refuse it? The problem I have is that the stuff is given to them FREE. Many of those people would not give their clothes to them if they knew it is a for profit business.
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SteveRoss wrote:
Aug 18th, 2014 9:54 am
So you are an insider? Do you know how much of the stuff they receive is dropped off the store versus them picking it up somewhere? When people drop off stuff, do they go through any of it and refuse it? The problem I have is that the stuff is given to them FREE. Many of those people would not give their clothes to them if they knew it is a for profit business.
I worked there about 8 months 2 years ago during the school year so I know a bit. I was the drop-off guy actually. But to answer some of your question, the stuff they pick up from the bins is brought in a truck by the Canadian Diabetes association which is dropped directly to the sorting center at the back so I can't comment on how much, but on average I'd say the trucks have more volume in terms of clothing (probably 70/30).

When people drop off stuff, I would only do a superficial inspection aka I wouldn't really check, but I was allowed to refuse items we specifically said we didn't take (there was a sign outside but people never read it). Otherwise, the only things I filtered were things that were obviously too bad to sell and I've seen a LOT of junk be dropped off...plates/containers with food stuck to them, dirty/rusted appliances, couches where everything was falling off, used heath products, the list goes on and on so I as an employee had a certain leeway in terms of deciding what was thrown away vs what made it to the sorting center.

And to be honest, I don't agree with your assessment. My experience with VV if anything showed me that more people than not treat VV as a dump for the stuff they don't want more than them trying to help any charity (the charity is just a "bonus" to make them feel better about them throwing stuff out every month). Literally, there's donation hours on the front door which aren't unreasonable yet every morning I would come and it would be a garbage dump in front of the door.
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There are many threads made to let other rfders know VV is not the best choice for their for charity donations but you can only do so much.
SteveRoss wrote:
Aug 18th, 2014 9:54 am
So you are an insider? Do you know how much of the stuff they receive is dropped off the store versus them picking it up somewhere? When people drop off stuff, do they go through any of it and refuse it? The problem I have is that the stuff is given to them FREE. Many of those people would not give their clothes to them if they knew it is a for profit business.
The Devil made me buy it - RFD. :twisted:
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Shoppersbeermart wrote:
Aug 17th, 2014 10:44 pm
First I apologize if this has been talked about already. I did a search and couldn't find a thread.

What are your thoughts on Value Village? Do you shop there? Did you used to?

It's a thrift store but the prices on some items are just strangely expensive. Don't they get their items mostly donated to them?

Books - Books with a cover price over I believe $10.00 are priced at 4.99. Pretty much any hardcover book will have a cover price over $10. So 4.99 a book is very high. 3.99 for a DVD?... Walmart has hundreds of Brand New DVDs for 5.00 in their bargain bins. I am not a parent but I hear horror stories over the prices of baby clothes and toys. Another problem is that many of their items are scracthed or damaged and some of the clothes have an unwashable stink.

I have found some good bargains there, but usually shake my head.
Must be related to the cost of high wages they pay to their floor staff.
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eldiablo wrote:
Aug 18th, 2014 10:13 am
Must be related to the cost of high wages they pay to their floor staff.
Damn why wasn't I notified? I was paid minimum wage to do such horrible work :razz:
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hdom wrote:
Aug 18th, 2014 10:03 am
There are many threads made to let other rfders know VV is not the best choice for their for charity donations but you can only do so much.
We have donated (and still do) all our clothes and furniture to the Salvation Army. I agree, Value Village is definitely not the best choice for donations.
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uber_shnitz wrote:
Aug 18th, 2014 10:02 am
I worked there about 8 months 2 years ago during the school year so I know a bit. I was the drop-off guy actually. But to answer some of your question, the stuff they pick up from the bins is brought in a truck by the Canadian Diabetes association which is dropped directly to the sorting center at the back so I can't comment on how much, but on average I'd say the trucks have more volume in terms of clothing (probably 70/30).

When people drop off stuff, I would only do a superficial inspection aka I wouldn't really check, but I was allowed to refuse items we specifically said we didn't take (there was a sign outside but people never read it). Otherwise, the only things I filtered were things that were obviously too bad to sell and I've seen a LOT of junk be dropped off...plates/containers with food stuck to them, dirty/rusted appliances, couches where everything was falling off, used heath products, the list goes on and on so I as an employee had a certain leeway in terms of deciding what was thrown away vs what made it to the sorting center.

And to be honest, I don't agree with your assessment. My experience with VV if anything showed me that more people than not treat VV as a dump for the stuff they don't want more than them trying to help any charity (the charity is just a "bonus" to make them feel better about them throwing stuff out every month). Literally, there's donation hours on the front door which aren't unreasonable yet every morning I would come and it would be a garbage dump in front of the door.
I think it is wrong that people dump stuff that should be taken to the dump. They just want to avoid dump fees or it is too inconvenient for them to take it to the dump because of the operating hours. They don't want to be caught dumping garbage at the locked gate. I wonder how many people donate furniture and clothes with bedbugs in them?
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SteveRoss wrote:
Aug 18th, 2014 10:34 am
I think it is wrong that people dump stuff that should be taken to the dump. They just want to avoid dump fees or it is too inconvenient for them to take it to the dump because of the operating hours. They don't want to be caught dumping garbage at the locked gate. I wonder how many people donate furniture and clothes with bedbugs in them?
This would happen very often (especially on weekends). We're not allowed to accept certain items such as mattresses and we often don't accept couches (unless it's in really good condition) for the bedbugs reason but this is a localized decision so many stores probably do carry these types of items. We also weren't allowed to accept heavy electronics such as TVs and appliances because we had no electronics recycling program. People would get around that by dumping these kinds of products overnight in front of the donations door so in the morning we would have to deal with it regardless.

I'd say in my experience these types of "dump donators" are probably close to 30% of the people I would meet while working there.

While the other 70% weren't dumping garbage, I still got the distinct vibe they cared little for where their donations ended up and just wanted an easy outlet for their consumerist behavior, but that's just my opinion/observation. I'd often see the same people come in and drop off clothing every week or two because they bought new ones and wanted to get rid of the "old untrendy" stuff. That being said, I can assert that people just wanted to dump stuff because for example, say TVs, when I would tell them we don't sell those and have no recycling program, I would also direct them to a Future Shop or Staples right down the street (like ~5min drive) that did have a recycling program and most people didn't even want to make the trip...yeah "charity" huh :lol:
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Oct 22, 2007
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savercanuck91 wrote:
Aug 18th, 2014 3:19 am
I still check out Value Village to see if I can score on some old Pentium-era (90s-2000s) desktops. Definitely worth it for just $10-15.
I`ve found better computers beside the curb. Even $10 is too much to pay for a p4.
Newbie
Jul 16, 2014
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, ON
I've found that Value Village is the worst of the major thrift store chains for pricing. When I first started going there in the mid to late 90s this wasn't the case. Salvation Army is the only chain where I'll bother looking at the clothes any more. Goodwill uses a colour coding system that isn't explained anywhere. At the end of the aisle there will be a sign saying "$5.99 and up" and it's the colours of the tags that determine the "and up", but apparently they prefer to keep you in the dark about the actual price until you get to the checkout.
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Jul 3, 2013
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Aren't these places meant for the poor and needy?
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uber_shnitz wrote:
Aug 18th, 2014 10:50 am
This would happen very often (especially on weekends). We're not allowed to accept certain items such as mattresses and we often don't accept couches (unless it's in really good condition) for the bedbugs reason but this is a localized decision so many stores probably do carry these types of items.
I`m surprised you guys would even take couches or any upholstered furniture... Technically they would have to be retagged WRT to the upholstered and stuffed articles act. Come to think of this, stuffed animals, and bedding with filling materials (like comforters) would be fall under that legislation. Did the mattress police (aka TSSA inspectors) ever visit your location ?
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FutureCEO wrote:
Aug 18th, 2014 11:20 am
Aren't these places meant for the poor and needy?
Why would you think that ?

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