It’s spring, which means you’re pretty much guaranteed to start making regular trips over to Home Depot and Lowe’s for flowers, mulch and other material to make the exterior (and interior!) of your home look its best.
Sure, they’ve already got great prices, but there are always more ways to save. Here are a few of our favorite shopping tricks for saving money at Home Depot and Lowe’s this spring.
Like many retailers, Home Depot and Lowe’s will price-match competitors coupons. Home Depot has a “Low Price Guarantee,” which means that if you find a current lower price on an item they have in stock, they’ll beat the competitor’s price by 10 percent.
“Just bring the ad, printout or photo with you to the register for validation,” according to the Home Depot website.
Lowe’s has a similar policy, called “Everyday Low Prices.” Lowe’s will also beat a competitor’s price by 10 percent, though certain restrictions apply (closeout pricing, special order, discontinued merchandise, clearance, liquidation, etc.)
2. Damaged Goods And Packaging
Having damaged boxes on the shelves is unsightly for retailers. If you spot damaged packaging on a product you want to buy, ask the manager if they would consider giving you a discount. Never hurts to ask, right? This will also work for items that are scratched, dented or slightly damaged.
3. Oops Paint
If you haven’t experienced the magic of “Oops Paint” yet, you are seriously missing out. Here’s the deal: Sometimes people buy a gallon of paint that they think will be perfect for their home renovation project. But later, they realize it’s too dark, too glossy, too something, so they bring it back to Home Depot or Lowe’s.
Their bad decision is your gain—both Home Depot and Lowe’s sell this returned paint for a fraction of the price of regular paint. Sure, you may not find the exact color you’re looking for right away, but if you’re vigilant or you’re willing to be flexible, you can see some serious savings.
Denise Zdziennicki, who runs the blog Salvaged Inspirations, said she found a $47 gallon of Behr Paint & Primer for just $9 in the “Oops Paint” pile at Home Depot—that’s a savings of 80 percent!
Brooke Ulrich, who blogs at All Things Thrifty, found a gallon of light pink paint for just $2!
4. Plant Guarantee
If you buy perennials, trees or shrubs at Home Depot, the store guarantees them for one year, meaning that if the plant dies before a year is up, you can get a replacement. Their policy does not apply to cut flowers or floral arrangements. Lowe’s has a similar policy.
5. Pinterest-Perfect Scrap Wood
Both Home Depot and Lowe’s have a scrap wood pile where you can find discounted wood that’s perfect for your next Pinterest project. They’ll also cut your wood for free, so don’t hesitate to take advantage of this awesome service.
6. $5 Off $50 Purchase Coupon
By signing up for the Home Depot email list, you automatically get a coupon for $5 off your next purchase of $50 or more—totally worth it. Lowe’s will also send you exclusive offers just for giving them your email address.
7. Military Discount
Lowe’s will give you 10 percent off if you’re currently serving in the military, retired from the military or the immediate family member of someone with a valid military ID card. VA benefit recipients are also eligible for the discount. Plus, over Memorial Day, Fourth of July and Veterans Day, Lowe’s extends the military discount to all veterans who served honorably. The discount is only available for in-store purchases.
8. Buy Discounted Gift Cards
You can buy discounted gift cards from sites such as Raise and Cardpool. When people get gift cards they don’t want or can’t use, they sell them at a discount. Typically you can save between 5 and 10 percent on gift cards—hey, every little bit counts.
9. Rebates, Rebates, Rebates
Home Depot cares about you saving money so much that they created a handy little website for finding rebates on their products. When you visit the site, simply enter the product number and Home Depot will find all the available rebates in your area for that product. Lowe’s has a similar rebate finder website.
This is a great tool for finding random rebates you’ve never heard of, particularly those offered by your local government or utility provider. They’ll actually give you money back for making your home more efficient.
10. Free Classes
Want to save money by installing that bathroom tile yourself? If you’re a wannabe home improvement expert, take advantage of the free classes at Home Depot. You’ll learn how to stain your deck, install floor tile, build a vertical succulent garden and prepare your yard for spring, just to name a few. They even have free classes for kids!
11. Rent, Don’t Buy
If you only plan on re-doing your kitchen backsplash once, why would you splurge on an expensive tile cutter when you can rent one for $29 per day? Of course, prices vary by region and by store, so be sure to check your local Home Depot for their rental prices.