Save Money with Price Matching

homedepot.ca

Hello everyone.

Today we’re going to talk about how to save time and money price matching, which major retailers do (and don’t) price match, and what conditions typically apply to price match policies.

Saving Time with Price Matching

My most common price matches occur when I go grocery shopping.

Prior to any grocery trip, I have a quick look at retailer’s flyers to see what’s on sale.

There will often be 2-3 retailers that have sale items I have on my grocery list.

Sure, I could drop by each store, but who wants to spend the time and effort doing that, especially during a pandemic?

I save a lot of time by buying them all at one retailer, if they’ll price match the items that are on sale elsewhere. And you’ll recall from last week’s post, ‘Time is Money, and Money was Time’!

Sadly, Walmart Canada recently discontinued their price matching policy1, which is what prompted me to write this post.

Saving Money with Price Matching

Another less common, although even more advantageous use of price matching occurs when a retailer not only matches but also beats the competitor’s price.

And I’m not talking about the stores that ‘beat’ by 1 cent.

Home Depot and Lowes Canada both price match and take another 10% off the competitor’s lower price.

Here is Home Depot Canada’s price match policy directly from their website2:

Home Depot Price Match and Beat by 10% for Retail Stores:

homedepot.ca

If you find a current lower price on an identical, in-stock item from a local retailer’s store or website, we will match the price and beat it by 10%. Prices for online items will be matched to localized online prices if available.

I’ve bolded and italicized the key parameters required.

I.e. It has to be in-stock and available for sale at the other local retailer. It also has to be an identical item, for which the easiest way to confirm is matching the manufacturer’s model number or UPC.

Their policy is a bit different for retail competitor’s that don’t have physical stores.

Home Depot’s Price Match Policy for Online-Only stores:

If you find a current lower price on an identical, in-stock item from a Canadian online-only retailer’s website, we will price match only. Items from online-only retailers are not eligible for the 10% discount. Prices will be matched to localized online prices if available.

This refers to retailers like Amazon.ca that don’t have stores, putting aside that Amazon does own Wholefoods and also has some other retail locations.

I.e. Home Depot will match Amazon.ca (if it’s being sold by Amazon, and not a third-party seller listed on Amazon.ca), but they won’t give you a further 10% off.

There are other stipulations, beside what’s mentioned above, like the online competitor products must be able to be shipped to your location, and it’s for products that are not part of their exclusion list.

I checked and there doesn’t look to be anything unreasonable in their exclusion list, as it denotes things like custom or special orders, volume or wholesale discounts, liquidations, clearance, close-out prices, auction site pricing, items sold by a third-party on a website (i.e. marketplace sellers), open-box or display merchandise, pre-owned, refurbished, services (i.e. Assembly, installation, lease or financing, etc.), rebates, free offers, gifts with purchase, gift cards, misprint prices, rain checks, etc.2

Lowes Matching policy is pretty similar to Home Depot’s:

Lowes Price Match for Retail Stores*:

lowes.ca

We guarantee our everyday competitive prices. If you find a lower every day or advertised price on an identical in-stock item (brand, size, model number) currently offered at any local retail competitor’s store or website (including shipping, handling and fees, if applicable), we will match their price and beat it by 10 percent upon request.3

The * goes on to describe all the exclusions similar to Home Depot, although also excludes short term door crashers/limited time sales (including Cyber Monday, Black Friday and Boxing Day/Week prices).

Lowes policy for Online Only Websites (i.e. Amazon) has some similarities to Home Depots, although they will match and beat by 10%, but that takes into account shipping and handling fees.3

Here are two examples of how we could save money using Home Depot’s and Lowe’s price match policies.

Lowe’s latest flyer (dated Oct 9, 2020) has a DeWalt portable air compressor on sale for $499. Home Depot’s website has a slightly lower price at $498.

Lowes Flyer homedepot.ca

So, first thought is to buy it at Home Depot and save $1.

But with Lowes price match policy, we can actually get it for $498 less 10% = $448.20, which is a savings of $49.80!

Another DeWalt item in Lowe’s flyer is a table saw at $699. Home Depot has the same saw at $849.

Lowes Flyer homedepot.ca

With Home Depot’s price match policy, they would have to sell it to you for $699 less 10% = $629.10, a savings of $69.90 compared to if you bought at Lowe’s.

It’s important to carefully compare the items to make sure they are exactly the same, as often they may appear to be the same, but actually have a slight variation between the items sold at different retailers.

For example, there is a DeWalt 5-tool combo at Lowes on sale for $399. The Home Depot DeWalt 5-tool combo is slightly different, with one tool in the set and the manufacturer’s model # being different.  

Lowers Flyer homedepot.ca

Manufacturers will create slightly (or very) different configurations of products specifically to ensure there is not direct competition of pricing between big retailers.

This negates the manufacturer’s exposure to price comparisons and price matching.

Often if a Retail Buyer sees an item they carry being aggressively priced at a competitor, and/or they have to give a lot of price matches to their customers, they may go after the manufacturer to compensate them for it.

I know this first-hand from having been a Buyer at a really big retailer!

Another way to save money with price matching is by using retailers price match policies that refund the difference after the purchase.

I.e. if you buy something then see it advertised at a better price a week or more later.

Many retailers do this, so it’s worth keeping an eye on sale prices even after you make the purchase.

Retailers that price match:

*With the length of time you can get a refund of the difference in price if a competitor drops their price after you’ve made the purchase

  • The Home Depot2
    • Price match plus 10% off competitor’s lower price
    • No refund difference after purchase – they specifically mention in their policy: “Price match only available at time of purchase”
  • Lowes3
    • Price match plus 10% off competitor’s lower price
    • 30-day refund difference
  • Rona4
    • Even though they are owned by Lowes, they do not offer the additional 10% discount that Lowes does.
    • 30-day refund the difference
    • For major appliances, they’ll also give a further 10% discount off the competitor’s lower price, but only if the lower price is lower by $1.01 or more. I.e. If Lowes has a fridge for $999, and a competitor has one for $998, it won’t apply, but if it’s at $997.99 or less, then it qualifies
  • The Brick5
    • 30-day refund difference
    • For appliances, they will also refund an additional 20% if a competitor drops their price.
    • The weird thing is their policy makes no mention of giving you that 20% discount when you make the purchase, only after…
  • Kitchen Stuff Plus6
    • Price match plus 10% off competitor’s lower price
    • 14-day refund difference
Kitchen Stuff Plus Price Match Policy (kitchenstuffplus.com)
  • No Frills7
    • 7-day refund difference
  • Home Hardware8
    • No mention of a refund difference policy
  • Canadian Tire9
    • 30-day refund difference for competitors
    • 14-day refund difference if matching to another Canadian Tire store
      • I know their stores are franchises, but it still seems odd to have only two weeks to price match to another Canadian Tire store, and yet 30 days against any other competitor…
  • Giant Tiger10
    • No mention of a refund difference policy
  • Leon’s11
    • 60-day refund the difference
  • Walmart USA12
    • Walmart.com will match many competitor’s website’s prices, including Amazon.com, and if you are shopping in Walmart US stores, you can get them to price match to their Walmart.com prices (only their own, no third-party marketplace vendors)
    • That said, like Walmart Canada, they do not price match their competitor’s flyers or other pricing
  • Best Buy13
    • 30-day refund difference
  • Toys R Us14
    • 30-day refund difference if they drop their own price
    • 14-day refund difference for competitors
  • Staples15
    • 14-day refund difference
  • Office Depot16
    • 14-day refund difference
  • Hudson’s Bay17
    • 7-day refund difference
  • The Source18
    • 30-day refund difference
  • Fresh Co19
    • 14-day refund difference

Retailers that do not price match:

  • Loblaws
  • Shoppers Drug Mart
  • Sobeys
  • Safeway
  • Metro
  • Amazon – Amazon does not match prices upon request, although they often automatically match their prices to many competitor’s online prices.
  • Costco – while they don’t match prices with other retailers, they will refund the difference if the price goes down (at Costco) on an item you bought within the last 30 days.20

The retailer’s that offer price matching have similar conditions, although there are definitely some differences in the small print.

Some have different views of who their competitors are, how close those competitors need to be, whether or not aggressive sales like Boxing Day or Black Friday count, some only allow matches for advertised prices, how many items you can price match at one time, etc., etc.

There are many, many more retailers than I could possibly mention in this post.

In order to really take advantage of price matching, do some quick online checks of your favourite store’s and their price matching policies.

Increasing our awareness of how we can use retailer’s price match policies is a great way to ensure we are all Doing More with Our Money.

Happy price matching, everyone!

1 https://globalnews.ca/news/7343931/walmart-canada-is-getting-rid-price-matching-program/

2 https://www.homedepot.ca/en/home/customer-support/home-depot-price-guarantee.html

3 https://www.lowes.ca/customer-service/price-match-policy

4 https://www.rona.ca/en/in-store-price-guarantee

5 https://www.thebrick.com/pages/price-guarantee#:~:text=At%20the%20time%20of%20your,tender%20with%20which%20you%20paid

6 https://www.kitchenstuffplus.com/price-match#:~:text=The%20best%20prices%20are%20always,a%20credit%20towards%20your%20purchase

7 https://www.nofrills.ca/wont-be-beat

8 https://www.homehardware.ca/en/terms-and-conditions

9 https://www.canadiantire.ca/en/customer-service/price-match-guarantee.html

10 https://www.gianttiger.com/category/customerservice/faqs.do

11 https://www.leons.ca/pages/price-guarantee

12 https://www.walmart.com/help/article/walmart-com-s-price-match-policy/9b1a48788b0045a8a784d34aa566627f

13 https://www.bestbuy.ca/en-ca/help/payment-and-pricing/low-price-guarantee

14 https://www.toysrus.ca/en/help?fid=help-services

15 https://help.staples.ca/hc/en-us/articles/360026191831-Does-Staples-have-a-Price-Match-guarantee-#:~:text=Yes%20we%20do.,and%20we%20will%20match%20it

16 https://www.officedepot.com/cm/help/price-match#:~:text=If%20you%20find%20a%20lower,are%20identical%20and%20in%20stock

17 https://www.thebay.com/content/spp-pricematch#:~:text=If%20you%20find%20a%20lower,the%20Hudson’s%20Bay%20online%20item

18 https://www.thesource.ca/en-ca/bestPrice#:~:text=If%20you%20find%20a%20lower,%2C%20we’ll%20match%20it

19 https://freshco.com/faq/

20 https://customerservice.costco.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/628/~/price-adjustment—costco.com-orders

20 https://customerservice.costco.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/1162/~/does-costco-price-match-with-other-retailers%3F

4 Replies to “Save Money with Price Matching”

  1. I just realized I might’ve lost hundred of dollars (and more) by not doing this. I’ll keep it in mind from now on!

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