Family Dollar Stores

Family Dollar. Where do I begin. I’m not a fan of posting unfavorable reviews. Really I’m not. I prefer to not post about them or just avoid them but this one was unavoidable so here is my experience with Family Dollar. Hopefully this will help the company clean up the ones in my area as from searching online it seems other areas have some great stores.

This store in the photo isn’t the first one I went to or the first time I attempted going. There is one in another town that is near our mall that I intended on going to but every time I went there were people loitering at the front door. Like large groups of guys that made me uncomfortable to have to walk through. So, I came home and looked up other locations. There was on another town over near another shopping plaza I go to so I thought this was perfect.

So when Gavin’s tumbling class in the same town was over on Wednesday night I took a drive over. When I pulled around and into the parking lot I was a bit scared. The parking lot is on the side around the back and there are no lights. I sat there for several minutes even wondering if I wanted to get out of my Jeep with Gavin in this area in the dark next to a liquor store. I noticed in that time that people were walking back to their cars that had just got there. I asked if they were closed and they said they were due to register problems. So that answered that.

For the sake of the post I went back yesterday. This time by myself. Here is what the building looks like during the day. A little paint would definitely help this place don’t you say? Well, let’s go in and not judge a book by the cover.

What I hadn’t realized was that Family Dollar is not a dollar store. I hadn’t been to this store before but I had always thought it was a dollar store with a name like Family Dollar. That’s besides the point, but thought it should be known if you were planning a trip. Let’s move on.

Many of the stores shelves were bare in spots but the selection that they did have was pretty good and consisted of a lot of name brands. I also noticed on the shelves that you could use manufacturer coupons here.

I have a lot of projects I’m working on with Gavin art wise and Johnny is starting to need his school supplies replenished so I got a lot of my stuff from this isle that was well stocked and had a pretty good selection.

The one thing you do need to look out for is a lot of stuff in my opinion was over priced. For instance this Prego sauce is $2.50 here and down the street where I normally shop it’s $1.88. That’s a $.62 difference which is huge to me. I saw this on a lot of items throughout the store. So you really need to pay attention to prices and make sure you are getting a real deal.

When all was said and done here is what I spent my $50 gift card on. The grand total was $51.58. The big puzzles in the back will make great gifts and the rest is for stockings or projects I’m working on. The Christmas bags I bought were supposed to be 25% off but when I checked my receipt they didn’t ring up discounted.

Overall, I personally won’t be going back. Half the struggle with the store was just getting in the front door which honestly shouldn’t be the hard part. Granted the stores aren’t in the nicest of areas but I shop in these areas regularly and haven’t ever felt scared to enter any of the other stores before. This store should really think about the look they give the outside world of shoppers who have never been in their store and about the safety of their shoppers allowing large groups of men loiter at the front doors with alcohol. Maybe having all their locations directly next to liquor stores is common as all the ones in our area are like this but after talking with other bloggers I feel that we get jipped because they said their stores were nothing like this. So, come one, Family Dollar clean up our stores!

ย I wrote this review while participating in a blog tour by Mom Central Consulting on behalf of Family Dollar and received a gift card to facilitate my review and a promotional item to thank me for taking the time to participate.


  1. We used to have a ton of Family Dollar stores around in the 80’s and early 90’s but most of them didn’t come back after hurricane Andrew destroyed everything. I’ve recently started seeing brand new ones pop up all over the place, but they look nothing like this building because they are brand new!

  2. worse Family Dollar Store I was in was this past summer in myrtle beach, buggys had tall poles on them so they see where your at theft reasons I guess, I bought 2 24 pks water bottles only to be told by the clerk I could not push the buggy to my car to carry them, and parking was only long side the building barely one car wide way down near the alley, in 110 hot weather, store was molded scent, terrible place to go for FDS

  3. Stephanie says

    They are very run down in our area too. To me, they are even worse than Dollar General and I don’t like Dollar General at all! I also hate how they are in the lower income places. I know this is to help with lower income so they can walk there, but the prices are more than most places! I can go to Walmart or Dillons and get it even cheaper and thats without coupons too!!! I feel sad for people that can’t get anywhere but to a Family Dollar and how I feel they are being ripped off. It also seems that they don’t spend money on maintaining the buildings like most places should and I agree, to me its too shady and there is no way I am taking my family there! Even with a gift card, I don’t think you could make me go into one!

  4. That is very unfortunate, the one I shop at in lawrenceville nj is clean. You do have to know your prices as many are over priced, I find cleaning products to have the best value.

  5. I have only been to a Family Dollar once, because I don’t think I have ever seen one in our area. When we were vacationing in Southern Florida though we were located on an island and the nearest Walmart was a 15 mile drive, but the Family dollar was just a couple miles up the road before the only grocery store in town, which was closed at the hour we were out. We were in desperate need of something for one of the kids so I was excited to find this open store, only like you said, there were loiterers and the buildings on both sides of the store were abandoned and dark. I was seriously afraid to get out and go in, I could see that there were only two women in the store and none of the men outside had driven their because the lot was empty.

    I was raised in the inner city and lived in the the city off and on and I was getting a whole mix of vibes from this place. I ended up reversing and driving the 15 miles to the Walmart and another 15 back, lied to the family too because I knew they would tell me I was being dumb and it was a half hour before I got back, but better safe than sorry.

  6. Janette says

    Every Family Dollar I’ve been in has been kind of dingy and depressing. I feel too uncomfortable safety wise to go in any of them around here. The prices on nearly everything are higher than Target or local grocery stores. Family Dollar could do with a major rebranding. Clean up the buildings, redesign the interiors, hire competent staff, and make prices competitive with other discount stores. Then I’ll give them another try.

  7. We live in a small town. The nearest walmart is 30 minutes away. The nearest target is 40 minutes in the opposite direction. Shopping in town consistes of 2 dollar stores (Family Dollar and Dollar General) and a local grocer. We refuse to go to Family Dollar. It’s in a dumpy area and the exterior is never picked up. The interior is dingy and often dirty. The prices don’t compare to the other dollar store… and the staff is questionable. There is never more than one person working and they can’t seem to stay in the store for more than 10 minutes. They then proceed to take a smoke break with a toe in the damn store. Literally standing in the open doorway puffing away. The entire store smells like old ashtrays. They’re rude and do not enjoy they’re jobs.

    It’s just bad business all around. Blech.

  8. I tend to avoid Family Dollar for all of the reasons you mentioned. They are dirty, poorly staffed, poorly maintained and the prices are not what I would expect of a “dollar store.” I think I’ve been inside a Family Dollar once or twice and it was only because there was NOTHING else available and I needed something like batteries. They definitely need a major overhaul nationwide.

  9. We live in a small town the kind with only one flashing red light ๐Ÿ™‚ Our closest walmart is about 15 mins down the road. I would much rather drive there then go to our Family Dollar we have in town. Its way over priced for a dollar store..which I guess they can do when there is no other store. We do have a walmart being built soon and I really think once its built our Family Dollar will go under. The store is always dirty. The shelves are usually in a disarray. The aisles are tiny and the whole store seems like everything in just crammed into it. We don’t usually have people standing outside of it though. Our town cops are good about making sure of that. Its just the not being clean part that really gets me. It just always seems dirty! Oh and the food you have to check the dates. I have seen several things expire within like a week or I have know some to buy food like cookies and they be already expired. Not sure where they get their supplies from but they should check that out.

  10. Lisa L says

    I’ve only been to one Family Dollar store in Salisbury, MD when I was vacationing in Ocean City, MD. It was nice, clean and not shady at all. However the prices were ridiculous…everything was overpriced. I ended up going to Walmart.

  11. Renee says

    I never have liked the family dollar, when I heard our town might be getting one I thought EEsh why…
    I think they are too high, dirty,too clutterd in one town you can not even walk down isles with out moving boxes to see things on shelf.

  12. daniele plumber says

    I live in Houston, Tx. and I do not go to Family Dollar stores or the Dollar General stores because the prices are outrageous. I don’t go to Walmart because they just as dirty and dingy as those stores. If I go to any of these stores, it is a last resort. The employees always seem to have an attitude or they follow you like crazy.

  13. Lee says

    I live in Apopka, FL and we have a TON of Family Dollars in our area. I mean we have I think 3 within 5 miles of one another. The 2 new ones are beautiful. However there are always cop cars in the parking lots that have either pulled poeple over or maybe people are shop lifting. Either way it makes me feel very scared to visit. Any time of been inside one I’ve purchased a lot of stuff though. LOL


  14. Gina M says

    Out two are NASTY and would never even consider stepping foot in them. I do, however, LOVE the two Dollar Generals near me! Always clean, stocked and friendly!

  15. There is a Family Dollar about a mile or so from my house….and it’s right next to a liquor store. LOL

    I rarely go in there….I’ve found a few cute shirts for myself but other than that I’d rather go elsewhere. The cashiers are horrible.

  16. Christine M says

    I remember when we went to visit my hubby’s family up in Ohio the store was in a rough part of town and had those security bars. I sat in the van with the doors locked feeding the baby while my hubby and FIL went in the store. This one lady didn’t want to wait in line so she walked up to the register put her money on the counter and walked out with the soda. There is one down here where we are stationed at that I go to when I win a GC its nice but too pricey. Its not worth me spending my money at Family “dollar” when I can get it cheaper at the commissary or walmart or somewhere else.

  17. The one near my mother’s house isn’t bad, but the closest one to me is pretty much like the one you went to. The surrounding area isn’t very good, but I must say it provides an alternative to over priced convenience stores for those who live near it, many of which I assume don’t have cars.

    I pop in once or twice a year, usually when I go to the discount/overstock home improvement store across the street.

  18. There are a few Family Dollar Stores in our surrounding area but I hardly ever go to them, as you say many times the items are overpriced and the stores are usually very crowded. Funny you mention the liquor store because the one that comes to mind in our area is in a plaza by a liquor store too, lol!

  19. Yikes. I don’t think I would have even walked in the door just by the condition of the building. We have a few “dollar” named stores even one here in town but I’m not sure which company it is. On the outside it looks nice but inside the place looks like a garage sale at best.

  20. Maia G says

    Our family dollar was very clean and nice (but a bit overpriced). I always liked the weird flavors of food/drinks or candy they had. Unfortunately it closed ๐Ÿ™

  21. Wow, I love the one in my area. It is a little country, but the one in your area makes mine look like the Saks. I do not blame you for giving it a bad review!

  22. Erin says

    I get confused by all the dollar stores too. I have two Dollar Trees by me, and they are real dollar stores. But the one closest to me is skeevy. The one a little further away is pretty nice and I was able to pick up some good things. So you just have to shop around I guess?

  23. Paula says

    That one does look kinda rough. I don’t think I have ever been in the local one, but it is located in a well-trafficked shopping center. I do go to Dollar General around where I live

  24. amy v says

    I don’t blame you for going back! In my area we have family dollar, dollar tree and dollar store!! i think the dollar tree has everything for a dollar,,,,,, i really like the one by me but I agree- when not all items are one dollar I also double check prices.

    annae07 at aol dot com

  25. Kristy H says

    We just got a Family Dollar in our area about 6 months ago, and I have to say, it’s a great store, but, I’m with you on checking the prices!! I like going there because I can get clothes/socks, etc. for the kids, usually on sale B1G1 50%, or stock up when they change inventory for the seasons. May not be the best quality, but if it get them thru a few months and I only spent like $3 on a shirt, I’m fine with that!
    I’ve been in some pretty gross ones too, though, where I walked in, looked around a minute and walked right back out! But as long as the one near me stays nice, I’ll keep shopping there!

  26. Dee says

    We have Family Dollar, Dollar General and Dollar Tree in our area. Actually multiples of both. Depending on the area or part of town will determine the cleanliness of the stores. I don’t go to Family Dollar all that often but the one by me is next to a grocery store so not many people loitering around but the shelves are often bare and the store itself is cluttered. I know that doesn’t make sense but what they do have is all over the place and you need to hunt through other things to find what you want. A friend of mine swears by their canned goods and says she often finds things there she can’t find elsewhere.

  27. Being a blogger, you do come across things that you like and you don’t like and it’s definitely your right to post the review however you see fit-I think your review was very tastefully done.

    I’m sorry you had an unfortunate experience with your Family Dollar Store trip. I know we have several different types of dollar stores around our area and it does depend on what part of town you go to. Honestly though, even though some could use a little sprousing up, I haven’t had any horrible experiences thus far *knock wood*

    At least you got some goods things for Christmas! ๐Ÿ™‚

  28. I stop at a Family Dollar usually when I am in a town nearby. Fortunately they keep their area nice and clean. You can usually find a nice selection of items and some decent prices. I agree with knowing your prices so that you can correctly judge what you are purchasing. I have definitely found overpriced items as well, and I am glad that I have gotten fairly savvy at what I purchase often. I do hope that the store you went to cleans up its act. Cleaning up that graffiti would be a good start. ๐Ÿ™‚ Thanks for the honest review. ๐Ÿ™‚

  29. I’m sorry you had a bad experience. we have 2 in my area that are very clean and 1 not so clean but I tend to go to the nicer one with the most gracious and helpful employee’s. Its true you certainly have to watch the prices but I’ve scored many a good deal in there and of course the added bonus they do accept coupons!

  30. Amanda S-K says

    I find it sad that a store you would think, would be very reasonably priced, is not. I mean, they know people are limited where they strategically place the stores and I do believe they mark up their prices because people will think they are getting a good deal. However all stores do this. In wealthy communities and poor communities prices tend to be higher no matter what type of store it is.

  31. Carol Webb says

    I have found the same kind of experiences with prices at all dollar stores I have been to. Some items are good prices and some are definitely more expensive than regular grocery stores. I must have lucked out though in my area the dollar stores and family dollar are clean and safe. They are showing up all over the place in rural areas so hopefully that means the majority of them are decent.

  32. We have a family dollar in our area and while it is very nice and up-kept, the prices are high. I can get most things cheaper at Walmart, Costco, or $ Tree. That alone stops me from going there very often. I’m so sorry that you had such a bad experience Jennifer!

  33. Robin says

    Family Dollar in Dillon, SC was rude today. I noticed poles on the buggies when I went in. I needed milk, three cokes, laundry detergent and several other items. I got a buggy because the items were too heavy to carry. So after paying, I bushed the buggy to my car and as always, was going to return the buggy. After getting to the car, the cashier opened the door and hollered way across the parking lotโ€” Those buggies are not to leave the store, bring it back in now! This upset me because, first I cannot carry all of the groceries and second because of how I was spoken too-hollered at in front of everyone coming and going. I will not go back and I am sure that this will leave many others unhappy. Instead of taking it out on good customers, they should have found a way to control the buggy theft situation!

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