Using this strategy, Tonya scored a major deal on a zebrawood handmade dining room table. "I said, 'Could I get a better price on this?' And because I asked, I got a better price," she says.
Tonya used her eye for a bargain to land more items—from her floor sample front door to hand-painted silk lights. "I went into a boutique and the woman said, 'I want this price for them,'" she says. "I went online. I found them for less. She matched the price, so I saved thousands." To avoid paying too much on furniture for her poolside, Tonya didn't mess with retail stores—she drove straight to the manufacturer. "We saved thousands of dollars."
Another source of Tonya's bargain-hunting success—shopping for already-reduced merchandise. A large African basket hanging on her wall was a $100 consignment store find. Tonya discovered two matching chairs from the 1950s for just $5 apiece at a garage sale. And $5 towels from discount store T.J. Maxx adorn her bathroom.
"I love the way my house looks, and I didn't have to break the bank to do it," Tonya says.