Inexpensive Antique malls are great for shopping for things that you might not have thought of!
Antique malls are usually a large space that the mall owner rents out to many antique dealers. The dealers rent small areas and fill it with their own goods. The mall provides on floor staff and cashiers and any items that are sold from the dealer the mall gets a percentage of (often 10 to 20 percent).
At antique malls you will notice that each booth has a different code on their sale stickers, this is for inventory, and the mall owner keeps a tally of what each antique dealer sells.
While an antique mall that has several dozen antique dealers means a variety of goods to chose from, it also means that the antique dealers are competing with each other and that can show up in some great pricing.
Antique dealers buy their goods from a variety of sources, private sales, auctions, house sales to name a few. Since they are buying from such different places their pricing can be all over the place as well. They need to make a base amount of money a month to cover their rent so they are willing to slash prices on some items.
How do you use this to your advantage? You can check through everyone's booth to see who has the best deals. With small items that they all carry you will find the greatest range of prices. This is were you will find they are inexpensive antique malls.
Jewelry is always at antique malls and when you have several dealers specializing in it there is a lot of fun stuff to look for. If a dealer bought the jewelry when prices were very low then priced it low and the items has not sold over several years then it can be a real deal.
Even if you don't care for the design (it's ugly) if it is made from precious stones and metals than you can have it remade by a jeweler and have a stunning original piece for a fraction of the cost if bought new.
Antique malls are also great for picking up sets of beautiful china for a fraction of the cost. Odd numbers such as a set of 5 or 7 sell for a lot less than a set of 8. If you can find two odd sets you will have more than enough with some to spare. Don't think that buying one plate at a time will be money saving. For some odd reason singles tend to be more expensive than sets.
You can get known name brands like Evesham for about 50% of what stores sell it for.
Waterford Crystal, etched glass, perfume bottles, bar ware, vintage watches, vintage purses and clothes are a few of the high end items that you might be able to snag at a deal.
Gorgeous frames with truly ugly artwork can be a great find as you can ditch what is inside and replace it with your own artwork or a mirror.
Compared to high end antique shops this is were you will truly see how inexpensive antique malls can be.
All antiques are not created equal and things go in and out of fashion (remember when everyone was collecting carnival glass?)
Silver plate is really unfashionable right now and can be picked up for a song. Victorian furniture doesn't seen to be in that much demand as everyone is chasing vintage 1950's and 60's style, so if it is something that you love you will be able to get it at a great price.
Surprisingly really large items can be priced inexpensively because they are very difficult to move and not many people have the space for them.
Dealer get their checks from the mall every two weeks. If it every second Thursdays is when they get their money then the Friday after will be crawling with dealers that are replenishing their booths as they pick up their checks. This can be a great time to see what is "new" and even talk to some of the dealers.
As they are almost never there you can't negotiate the prices with the antique mall staff. If there is something in a dealers booth that you were considering buying and they are there to talk to then make a polite offer and see if they will change the price for you. They might not, but then again they might. While some antique malls might seem pricey to you at first really look around these inexpensive antique malls tend to have a range of goods from high to low and you might have to do some digging.
Enjoying this article? Get more great reading monthly. Sign up for the More Style Than Cash Newsletter!