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What Bargain Pros Know

August 22, 1996|VALERIE J. NELSON

Geography counts. A fleece jacket that sells for $79.99 in one discount store in south Orange County could be $19.99 in the chain's North County outlet. Sometimes the prices changed within a store.

* Don't disdain swap meets, especially for jewelry. One woman picked up a 14K gold pin for $10 but didn't realize its value till later.

* Always screech to a halt for clearance sales at boutiques, especially when they are in the right neighborhood.

* Spend a few dollars on accessories and alterations, which can dress up a purchase or make it hang right.

* Always examine the quality of the fabric and the detailing.

* Don't be afraid to ask for a discount if you see a flaw. The store manager will often discount it another 10%.

* Buy a good brand. A low price tag means nothing if the item is cheaply made.

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