Plastic Storage Totes & 3 Tips for Buying After Christmas

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Tips for Buying Plastic Storage Totes

plastic storage totesRetailers love to capitalize on the impatience of the average consumer. This is evidenced by the plethora of plastic storage totes that you are tempted to buy every year as soon as the Christmas spirit has left our homes.  Everyone that was once enamored with the arrival of Christmas is ready to put it behind them with an equivalent amount of zeal.  Be patient!

Retailers capitalize on impatience in a variety of ways. Think of the things that we do as couponers: stockpiling, stacking coupons, planning our trips, tracking our savings. Why would we not apply these to our purchase of non-food products as well? The truth is that we can. In fact, if you are able to wait a couple of extra weeks until the last two weeks of January, and the first week of February, you will find the absolute rock bottom prices on these items.

When it comes to buying your storage items I have some simple advice: Remember the three P’s!

The 3 Ps for Purchasing Plastic Storage Totes
  • Be PATIENT! By waiting a couple of weeks, you will be able to capitalize on the impatience of the retailers! One of the main advantages that retailers have by stocking plastics is that they are placeholders in the midst of valuable real estate in their store. Plastics are merchandised in seasonal areas that are anxiously awaiting the arrival of the Valentines merchandise. Since they are bulky and high profit, the retail managers will fill long runs of shelf space with plastics to “hold” that space without deteriorating the aesthetics of the store. If you are patient, you will be around when these plastics are deeply discounted at clearance prices to vacate the space in time for Valentine’s Day merchandise.
  • Don’t be PICKY!  If you are looking for general plastic storage totes, who cares if you buy units that have red or green lids? Many people don’t even pay attention because the price is no object to them. Not the Wiz Kids! We are going to zero in on those plastic tubs that have the red and green lids. In addition, we are looking for the extra bonus of a label with Christmas decor on it! These are clearance gold! My garage is made up of plastic storage totes with red and green lids from Christmas clearance and orange lids from Halloween/Fall clearance! If you aren’t picky and concerned about having a color coordinated attic or storage area (seriously, who does that?), then you will be in a position to grab your storage materials for 50%-75% off.
  • Be PERSISTENT!  Shop multiple stores! My favorite store for this type of clearance is Target, but that doesn’t mean that I will be ignoring Wal-Mart. Many stores will miss inventory in their back rooms due to the Holiday rush. The higher the volume the store, the more inventory allocation they receive. The last week of January is typically a final “purge” of the stockroom so that they are able to receive the last push of Valentine’s Day merchandise from their distribution centers. Once purged, all available inventory should be on the sales floor. This is when we pull the trigger! If you don’t think you are getting a good enough deal at the first store, go to another one that is in your general path of travel. These are typically not low dollar purchases (in relative  terms), so it makes sense to lay your game plan out before the day you actually make your purchases.

In closing, I will give you one last tip: don’t be afraid to pull the trigger a little early. If you see a deal and you think it’s a good deal, go ahead and pick it up. Keep your receipt!  If you are able to find a better deal in the next week or so, you can always return it. You definitely want to keep your receipt as the price of the plastic storage totes may have dropped since you bought them. If you don’t have the receipt, you will only get the current price of the item if they let you return it at all.


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  1. this is an awesome post and tips. i never realized that before!!!!

  2. I’ve gotta return some stuff already! Love the clearance prices!

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