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Hoarding Etiquette for Shoppers

HOARDING (as defined by the ConsignmentMommies.com dictionary): The practice of scooping up anything and everything cute, then debating those items in a corner for an hour, only to put back WAY more than you needed. (We are talking about intentionally taking WAY more than you ever intend to buy… not just taking your time to filter through your selections later.)

Whether you call it a creative shopping strategy, hoarding or just part of the consignment experience, some shoppers will gather a large number of items off the racks to sort through later.

Here are a few suggestions to make shopping more pleasant for everyone.

1. If you don’t want something, put it back in the right place, find a discard rack to hang it, or just give it to a volunteer. Those are the best ways to make sure someone else has a chance to find it and buy it.

2. Go through and pick up the items that you know you need for your kids in their size. There’s nothing wrong with picking up (and buying) a lot of clothes! Just don’t clear out an entire section in a size just because you don’t want to take the time to go through things on the rack.

3. Be aware of others’ personal space. Please don’t block an aisle with your cart, stroller or tubs. It can create a dangerous situation for others, especially children. Make sure you leave room around you for others to pass.

4. Take advantage of the holding area if your sale has one. When you fill up a tub or basket of things you KNOW you want to buy, see if they can hold it for you while you continue to shop. Don’t use the holding area as a place to store things you want to look through later.

5. Find an out of the way spot to check your stack for stains, holes, price, budget priority, etc.

6. Stalking someone else’s stash is not the best way to make friends. If she steps away for a moment, keep your hands to yourself.

7. However, if it looks like someone is discarding something you’re interested in, there’s nothing wrong with asking them if they’re putting it back, then looking at it.

8. Make up your mind on things before you get to the checkout area. Don’t hold up the line of shoppers while you make a decision.

9. Don’t use items that are for sale as storage for your stack unless you’re planning to buy them, too. That means strollers, laundry hampers and baskets. You may be keeping someone else from buying exactly what they need.

10. If you need help, ask a volunteer!


About the Author

Elizabeth Renfroe has a passion for all things consignment sale-related.  She enjoys coordinating the Children’s Market Sale at First United Methodist Church, Jacksonville, Alabama.