Raleigh, NC – Thousands of Amazon packages will be appearing on doorsteps in the next couple of days as part of the surge of shopping that comes with Amazon Prime Day.
But millions of items will also be returned. No matter where those returns are coming from, there’s a good chance they’ll end up in Raleigh.
Inside a north Raleigh shopping center, the hunt is on.
“They’re digging right now,” said Treasure Hunt Liquidators store owner George Milano.
Dozens of customers are rolling down the aisles at Treasure Hunt Liquidators – rooting through bins and looking for something special.
“You get that high of look what I just found for $ 4, or $ 2 or $ 10,” said Milano.
Inside of the store is thousands of returned items from all over the East Coast.
“Amazon has to get rid of it somewhere, so they need people like us to take it off their hands,” said Milano.
After Prime Day, Christmas or a major holiday, Milano said returns come flooding in.
“We bring in truck loads throughout the week, and we just break them down,” he said. “Starting on Friday, we load up the tables with all big box stuff, high dollar goods. You name it, you’ll find it”
That includes pads, drones, clothes, tools and lights all mixed together.
Milano buys truckloads of returned items for a flat rate, then sells what’s in them for a flat rate that only gets cheap er as the week goes on.
“If you find an iPad, it’s $ 10 on Friday. If you find it on Wednesday, it’s only a dollar, so everything must go,” said Milano.
Milano said it’s just too much stuff for his staff to sort and sell individually.
“That’s not what we get in the business for. We get in it for the treasure hunt,” he said.
When the freshest stuff arrives, on Fridays, there’s always a line, and a competition for the best items.
“Everyone wants to get the best things while they’re still out,” said customer Katelyn Hunter.
Customers saying the thrill comes from never knowing what you’ll find.
“Just looking for new, cool stuff to pick up and buy,” said customer Emorie Lathan.
It’s a joy also shared by Milano.
“The smile that comes on their face when they find these high ticket items, is priceless,” he said.