Author Topic: Is your local HBS less or more expensive than online?  (Read 3245 times)

Offline Steve Ruch

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Re: Is your local HBS less or more expensive than online?
« Reply #30 on: April 08, 2017, 03:56:37 PM »
My LHBS is not real big and I only go online for stuff he doesn't carry or if I find a WAY better price for something online which is not very often.
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Offline brewsumore

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Re: Is your local HBS less or more expensive than online?
« Reply #31 on: April 08, 2017, 05:35:25 PM »
My LHBS (Nu Home Brew, in Spokane Valley, WA) is very reasonable, and equal or cheaper than online for many items, especially ingredients (bulk or weighed), after a 10% discount for current membership in the local homebrew club, and especially if otherwise I'd be paying shipping. 

I buy and freeze bulk hop orders separately which ensures availability of specific varieties, allows me to shop sales, is theoretically cheaper, and allows me to do spur of the moment brews.  In reality, I spend hundreds of dollars for hops this way, that as they age I have to TRY to calculate AA% loss, and sometimes end up still in the freezer 7 years later.  So it's kind of a wash although when brewing ten gallons of hoppy beer I definitely see a savings using hops from my freezer.

I also typically outside source specific brand equipment, including new or used kegs, but I certainly don't fault the LHBS for having some higher priced items - that's how businesses need to operate! 

Through my LHBS I can call him a day or two before his weekly order to order items, including Wyeast liquid yeast, that he will sell me even if he has some older yeast of the same kind in his fridge.  I find that level of customer satisfaction awesome.   

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Re: Is your local HBS less or more expensive than online?
« Reply #32 on: April 09, 2017, 01:04:17 PM »
My LHBS (Nu Home Brew, in Spokane Valley, WA) is very reasonable, and equal or cheaper than online for many items, especially ingredients (bulk or weighed), after a 10% discount for current membership in the local homebrew club, and especially if otherwise I'd be paying shipping. 

I buy and freeze bulk hop orders separately which ensures availability of specific varieties, allows me to shop sales, is theoretically cheaper, and allows me to do spur of the moment brews.  In reality, I spend hundreds of dollars for hops this way, that as they age I have to TRY to calculate AA% loss, and sometimes end up still in the freezer 7 years later.  So it's kind of a wash although when brewing ten gallons of hoppy beer I definitely see a savings using hops from my freezer.

I also typically outside source specific brand equipment, including new or used kegs, but I certainly don't fault the LHBS for having some higher priced items - that's how businesses need to operate! 

Through my LHBS I can call him a day or two before his weekly order to order items, including Wyeast liquid yeast, that he will sell me even if he has some older yeast of the same kind in his fridge.  I find that level of customer satisfaction awesome.   

My reasons, as well.  If a yeast is approaching its best by date, he sells it to me for half off...then I just use a starter and I'm good to go.  He will get any ingredients that he has access to and virtually any equipment or parts, including some things that I don't readily find online (my time is worth something, after all).
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Offline PORTERHAUS

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Re: Is your local HBS less or more expensive than online?
« Reply #33 on: April 09, 2017, 03:13:46 PM »
My LHBS is pretty Ligit, I'm so glad to have it nearby. He has just about everything you would need aside from fittings, not much selection with those other than the basics. But plenty of grain for most anything I brew, wide selection of hops, great selection of both dry yeasts and WL yeasts. His mark up might be on the odds and ends and accessories...cleansers, small parts, keg and draft parts, stuff like that. I haven't ordered online for anything that I could get there, last online order was for some draft parts, fittings and dry yeast he was stocking yet.

Is he cheaper, on some things yes, other things about the same and like mentioned, with some particular items, no, he's more expensive. What little more I may spend per pound of grain, oz of hops or $1 more on yeast, I'm probably still saving with no shipping. It's about an hr round trip to get there, get what I need and BS a few minutes and get back home. You can't beat walking in the day of or day before brew day to get what I need.

Offline brewsumore

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Re: Is your local HBS less or more expensive than online?
« Reply #34 on: April 09, 2017, 09:15:22 PM »
Distance to a LHBS is also a pretty big factor for me.  Mine is only a 10 - 15 minute drive, very convenient.  And recently I've had a couple recipes I was putting together, and decided to change the ingredients based on additional research, but no biggie - just head back to my LHBS!


Offline Jkrehbielp

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Re: Is your local HBS less or more expensive than online?
« Reply #35 on: April 10, 2017, 03:48:54 PM »
My "local" Homebrew shop is an hour and a half away. A few days ago I needed supplies in a hurry and decided to drive up there rather than risk not getting the shipment fast enough.
I ordered 30 pounds of a base malt I don't often use, along with a few other things through their website for in store pickup, and within half an hour I got a call telling me that it would be cheaper to buy the whole 50 lb bag. They switched that for me and gave me a refund.
When I went in and mentioned that I usually order online because of the distance, she told me that shipping was free.
After that kind of service, I really don't care much about small differences in price. Shout out to Maryland Homebrew.

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Offline Steve Ruch

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Re: Is your local HBS less or more expensive than online?
« Reply #36 on: April 10, 2017, 06:33:44 PM »
Distance to a LHBS is also a pretty big factor for me.  Mine is only a 10 - 15 minute drive, very convenient.  !

I can catch a bus two blocks from my house that drops me off across the street from my LHBS 17-18 minutes later. I usually brew three gallon batches so it all fits in my backpack.
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Offline Andy Farke

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Re: Is your local HBS less or more expensive than online?
« Reply #37 on: April 10, 2017, 11:57:41 PM »
I shop LHBS for about 75% of my stuff...I've got two good options both within 15 minutes driving distance. Both offer club/AHA discounts, and I'm not paying shipping in either case. So, even if many items typically are a little more expensive per unit than online, I'm usually saving money (or at least spending the same amount) by driving over to the physical location. I'll sometimes order bulk hops or used kegs online (both are often cheaper that way), but for liquid yeast I almost always buy at the shop so as to avoid the danger of it overheating during transit or having to pay extra for ice packs. For me and my location in SoCal, it's almost always cheaper to buy liquid yeast locally. I also _really_ like the convenience of being able to dash over for impromptu brew day malts or last-minute forgotten ingredient, and so patronize the local shops whenever possible because I want them to stay in business! It's the small orders below the free shipping threshold--the pound or two of malt, packet or two of yeast--that particularly make sense to purchase locally.
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Offline santoch

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Re: Is your local HBS less or more expensive than online?
« Reply #38 on: April 11, 2017, 01:56:17 AM »
My lhbs is owned by a guy and his wife that were members of our club before theh opened the shop.  Its in the same building as the brewery where we've held our meeting every month since the club formed 12 yrs ago.  Their prices are good but not as cheap as online.  I dont care, though, because i know i can gonthere and pick up pretty much anything i would need.  I buy most of my stuff there, and even more there now that Larry's is gone.
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Offline narvin

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Re: Is your local HBS less or more expensive than online?
« Reply #39 on: April 11, 2017, 04:28:37 AM »
No, and yes... I know, bad answer.

I buy most things there, except when it comes to equipment.  It's hard to beat the best price online when you're a single store. Cooler: Walmart on end of season sale.  I bought a 20 gal pot from instawares and a motor from surplus center. I also bought pumps online.  But aside from some markups on big ticket items, I buy everything there.  Excellent prices and selection for sacks of malt, hops by the 1lb bag, yeast, etc. 
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Offline kpfoleyjr

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Re: Is your local HBS less or more expensive than online?
« Reply #40 on: April 12, 2017, 01:25:11 PM »
My LHBS is pretty Ligit, I'm so glad to have it nearby. He has just about everything you would need aside from fittings, not much selection with those other than the basics. But plenty of grain for most anything I brew, wide selection of hops, great selection of both dry yeasts and WL yeasts. His mark up might be on the odds and ends and accessories...cleansers, small parts, keg and draft parts, stuff like that. I haven't ordered online for anything that I could get there, last online order was for some draft parts, fittings and dry yeast he was stocking yet.

Is he cheaper, on some things yes, other things about the same and like mentioned, with some particular items, no, he's more expensive. What little more I may spend per pound of grain, oz of hops or $1 more on yeast, I'm probably still saving with no shipping. It's about an hr round trip to get there, get what I need and BS a few minutes and get back home. You can't beat walking in the day of or day before brew day to get what I need.
I live in NWI too.  Where is the LHBS that you frequent?  I usually go to Brew & Bloom in Hammond.  Kennywood in St. John just shut down in February.  I buy locally or online, depending upon need and availability.


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Offline cdawson

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Re: Is your local HBS less or more expensive than online?
« Reply #41 on: April 12, 2017, 02:20:45 PM »
My LHBS is fairly competitive with online prices, although a touch more expensive. It is a small private owned shop. The owner is very helpful and willing to provide direction when needed. They send out e-mail promotions with product discounts. He is also a member of the local brew club and gives a discount to AHA members. But like most everyone else, some things are just cheaper to source online. I do my best to support the LHBS for my brewing ingredients.

Offline PORTERHAUS

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Re: Is your local HBS less or more expensive than online?
« Reply #42 on: April 12, 2017, 03:38:54 PM »
My LHBS is pretty Ligit, I'm so glad to have it nearby. He has just about everything you would need aside from fittings, not much selection with those other than the basics. But plenty of grain for most anything I brew, wide selection of hops, great selection of both dry yeasts and WL yeasts. His mark up might be on the odds and ends and accessories...cleansers, small parts, keg and draft parts, stuff like that. I haven't ordered online for anything that I could get there, last online order was for some draft parts, fittings and dry yeast he was stocking yet.

Is he cheaper, on some things yes, other things about the same and like mentioned, with some particular items, no, he's more expensive. What little more I may spend per pound of grain, oz of hops or $1 more on yeast, I'm probably still saving with no shipping. It's about an hr round trip to get there, get what I need and BS a few minutes and get back home. You can't beat walking in the day of or day before brew day to get what I need.
I live in NWI too.  Where is the LHBS that you frequent?  I usually go to Brew & Bloom in Hammond.  Kennywood in St. John just shut down in February.  I buy locally or online, depending upon need and availability.


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I now go to Brewhouse Supplies in Valpo. I used to go to Kennywood when it was in Crown Point. I havent been there since selling and moving to St. John. I have also been to Brew and Blooms many times, nice little shop but hard to do my ingredient shopping there.

You need to check out Brewhouse suppies in Valpo. The place is awesome. The owner is great, great brewer himself, helpful, holds the local brew club meetings and gives an AHA discount. Find them on Facebook too.

Website:
http://www.brewhousesupplies.com/
« Last Edit: April 12, 2017, 03:44:41 PM by PORTERHAUS »

Offline kpfoleyjr

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Re: Is your local HBS less or more expensive than online?
« Reply #43 on: April 12, 2017, 05:22:37 PM »
Great - I will.  There used to be a small one in Valpo, owned by the same guy that had one in LaPorte, but both of them closed.  Happy to hear about this one and I'll certainly check it out.  Thanks!


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Offline PORTERHAUS

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Re: Is your local HBS less or more expensive than online?
« Reply #44 on: April 12, 2017, 06:51:34 PM »
Great - I will.  There used to be a small one in Valpo, owned by the same guy that had one in LaPorte, but both of them closed.  Happy to hear about this one and I'll certainly check it out.  Thanks!

Your welcome, I also was at Valpo Brews a few times as well. That was a nice place too, I have no idea what happened, one day they were just gone. I'm in Hobart, how about you?