Henrico County Surplus Sale Shopping

Since I started writing this blog, I have found myself venturing into more and more obscure warehouses around the city, and last week was no exception…

When surfing around Henrico County’s website one day, I came across the Purchasing Office page, and information about its monthly Surplus Sales. How could I resist?

Henrico County Surplus Sales are held on the first Tuesday and Wednesday of every month, from 8:30am to 1pm. Tuesdays are open for Henrico resident shopping only, ID required. The general public can shop on Wednesdays.

It is located around the back of the building that houses the Purchasing Office in North Run Office Park, 1590 E. Parham Rd, across from the Parham campus of J. Sargeant Reynolds Community College.

Tips:

    -Pick up a price sheet as you enter, which attempts to list most item categories and their particular costs. (To get a feel for what’s available and at what price, check out this sample price list.)
    -Bring cash or check for payment.
    -Everything at the sale is sold “as is,” with no returns, so test and examine carefully. There is an outlet available for testing electronics.
    -Purchases must be removed the same day.
    -Simuel, Support Specialist with the Purchasing Office, recommended arriving early for best pick!

Wandering around the sale space reminded me vaguely of what I would imagine the Room of Hidden Things in Harry Potter to be – assorted miscellaneous items at every turn. But the biggest two categories of goods for sale were office electronics and office furniture.

A number of seemingly tech-savvier shoppers than myself were browsing the electronic selections. VCR’s ($2)? Check. Fax machines ($5)? Check. Monitors ($1)? Check, check. Plus boxes full of cords ($1) and who knows what. There were also boxes of iMacs with the hard drives removed.

Chairs ranged in price from $1 to $5. Other items included lawnmowers ($25), golf clubs ($.50), in-line skates, helmets and pads ($1), bikes ($75-$150), exercise machines ($15), and a folding wheelchair ($10).

I noticed a number more items on the price list that I didn’t run across – $1 drum? $1 clothes check bag? $25 Red Bull Cooler? Either they were already sold or I didn’t look carefully enough. The inventory is different every month, whatever any department of the County no longer has need of. For example, Simuel mentioned that sometimes old playground equipment from renovated playgrounds comes through the warehouse doors.

I came away with a well-loved, but sturdy, folding metal chair ($3), and this aqua swivel chair for just $1! It could use a little TLC in the dingy department, but I like the modern lines, the small profile, and the color that blends with our living room.

surplus chair

(My Darling Husband is not so much a fan, so we’ll see if the chair gets to stay)

Who could benefit the most from the sale? Particularly college students/recent grads looking for cheap apartment seating and other furniture, and business owners trying to set up an office on a small budget (Most items are probably not in good enough condition for spaces where clients will go, but very serviceable and sturdy for general use).

While I’m not sure circumstances will permit me to be a surplus sale regular, I definitely want to go back and dig for more bargains next month!

Next sale dates are April 5 and 6.

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    March 7th, 2011 by