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October 14th, 2009

Items to Avoid at Warehouse Clubs

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Consumers shop at warehouse clubs (Costco, BJ’s, Sam’s Club) for one fundamental reason: to save money. In recent years, many shoppers have associated buying in bulk with saving money. Yet, that’s not always the case.

Personal finance experts Ken and Daria Dolan say there are several items you should stay away from when shopping at warehouse clubs.

Here are just a few:

1. Gasoline: Here is one instance where selling in bulk may make the product more expensive. We have long told readers that there is a significant delay between the present cost of oil and the price of fuel at your local gas station. However, that’s not always the case at warehouse clubs that sell gasoline. “That’s because warehouse clubs are among the first to reflect the increase in gas prices since the sheer volume of gas they sell requires them to replenish their supply more often than other gas stations,” say the Dolans.

2. Fresh Produce: When we think of Costco, BJ’s and Sam’s Club, fresh produce doesn’t really come to mind. The Dolans agree. For seasonal items, the Dolans suggest shopping at your local grocer or farmer’s market. For products that are sold based on their freshness, buying in bulk isn’t always the way to go.

3. Paper Products: Here’s one that surprised us. If there’s one product that most consumers buy in bulk, it’s paper towels and toilet paper. According to the Dolans, the price per unit at “big box” stores, like Target and Walmart, for paper towels and toilet paper was the same as the clubs — “And we didn’t have to figure out where to store 48 rolls of toilet paper!”

Click here to continue reading the Dolans’ “Worst Warehouse Club Buys.”

For more, be sure to read “Money-Saving Websites for Almost Everything.”

Now that we know some items to avoid, for those of you who shop at warehouse clubs, which items do you save the most on?

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One Response to “Items to Avoid at Warehouse Clubs”

  1. Loan Modification=Better Mortgage Rates No Foreclosure | Mortgage Capped Says: October 14th, 2009 at 7:27 pm

    [...] Items to Avoid at Warehouse Clubs | HSH Financial News Blog [...]

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HSH.com's daily blog focuses on the latest developments in the mortgage and housing markets. Our mission is to relate how changes in mortgage rates and housing policy, as well as the latest financial news, impacts consumers, homebuyers and industry insiders alike. Our 30-plus years of experience in the mortgage industry gives us an edge as we break down the latest changes in an ever-changing market.

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Tim Manni is the Managing Editor of HSH.com and the author of their daily blog, which concentrates on the latest developments in the mortgage and housing markets.

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