Apparently, more middle-class folks are shopping at thrift stores, according to this article from CNN.com.
From the article:
“We’re seeing a lot more middle-class and upper-class customers we haven’t seen before,” (said a Salvation Army store operator). “Without even asking, you can just look in the parking lot (at their cars).”
I’ll make some broad assumptions, too. I guess “middle class” people drive certain types of cars. Which might these be? Shiny new cars? Clunkers? Something in-between? You can’t tell by looking at a car if it’s paid for, leased, or financed. I’m going to be bold and assume a lot of these middle class cars aren’t paid in full. Hard telling, unless you actually ask the driver.
Recently, J.D. Roth of Get Rich Slowly pointed out that slightly more millionaires drive Fords than Cadillacs. Interesting.
So, for pete’s sake, don’t judge a person’s financial status by the car they drive! I’d rather have a paid-for Ford than a six-year note on a Caddy.
Other interesting tidbits from the article:
- “The Salvation Army reports a dangerous decline in donations. Just as consumers are now more likely to buy secondhand goods, they are also less likely to get rid of their used clothing or furniture.”
- Shoppers include bargain-hunters and people interested in recycling.
- Now that thrifting has become more mainstream, industry folks expect the trend to last — at least while the economy is in the toilet.
I love thrift and consignment stores. I’ve found things for my home, maternity clothes (hi, clothes with tags still on!), baby clothes & gear, and plenty more. I’ve gotta be careful, though. It’s easy to overspend there since you know you’re getting such a bargain.