Tuesday, March 9, 2010

lesson learned

So last night, we decided to take a drive out to Home Depot to pick up wood for the 3 new garden beds we want to build this year. For 12 six-foot lengths of untreated pine (we make our beds out of pine - some folks use cedar - but we find pine works well), we paid over $75 (eek!!!). Half way home I realized we had made a big mistake - why were we going to Home Depot when there's a small, locally owned lumber yard right in our own town?? We called the lumber yard this morning, and asked their price for the same wood. The answer? Just $23 and change! So guess which family will be returning to Home Depot this morning, bringing back last night's purchase, and stopping by the lumber yard this afternoon?? Yep, that would be us!!

Lesson learned - when you need something, look to the local guy first!! It's certainly not always the case that what you can find locally will be not only less expensive but also better quality - but it frequently works out that way. We're so conditioned to think "big box store" when we need something - it's a habit that's not easy to break. I haven't shopped at Walmart for years, but I still go to Target, Home Depot, Lowe's, etc. more frequently than I probably even realize. I wonder if I could go the rest of the year without shopping a big box store. Hmm... that's a challenge I might have to consider for myself. Stay tuned!

4 comments:

plentyo'moxie said...

I would love to be reading about that adventure! I'm pretty well off chain stores except for one major thing: clothes. I don't buy a lot, but haven't been strong at finding alternatives when I need items.

Sara said...

I want to quit "big box stores" too. I rarely use Walmart - except for my medicine because it is cheaper there...I can't get meds for $4.00 or $10.00...

Amy said...

I haven't been to Walmart for years and the others less and less. I rarely even go to the grocery store. I still do go to the ones you mentioned, but FAR less than ever before. I also really think before I make the trip to decide if I really need to go there. I started using Brock's in Rochester, recently and have found them to be cheaper on some things and a smidge higher on others, but the quality of the wood has been far better than HD or Lowes. Which store did you go to? I'd love hardware store/lumber options in the area...oh, and sometimes I can get just what I need at the Restore in Dover.

Colleen said...

Hi all -
Shopping really is an interesting thing to think about - even yesterday when we needed a couple groceries, I was debating the merits of Shaws vs. Hannafords - and I realized I don't have enough information to make a good choice between the two. This whole issue of shopping deliberately and with thought (instead of just popping into stores that are "convenient" etc.) is definitely something I want to explore more, and I'll be writing about my adventures and discoveries for sure!

Amy - the lumber yard we went to is Fernald's - the folks there were really helpful, and they had exactly what we needed. All good!!

:)Colleen