Mid-Michigan stores were busy the day after Christmas

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Birch Run (WJRT) - (12/26/17) - It's return season. People who work at Mid-Michigan stores know the day after Christmas can be one of their busiest times. Many customers have things to return.

The National Retail Federation estimates that 13% of all purchases will be returned. Mix those customers with those looking for after-Christmas bargains and it adds up to a very busy time.

Stores like those at the Birch Run Premium Outlets had lots of customers zipping in and out. One reason for the pep in the step was the temperature, which was in single digits for much of the day.

"Well, I've got the car running right now and the remote start so it's not too bad," said Amy Vargo.

Good bargains can be incentive to come out in the cold weather.

"We know there have been some deals to be had and made sure everyone's been able to take advantage of them despite some of the crazy weather we've had," said Lindsay Carpenter, Birch Run Premium Outlets general manager.

Two sisters found waiting until after Christmas paid off for them.

"We found a lot of 50% off. 50-60, some stores had 70% off. We had wanted to go shopping before Christmas together but our schedules didn't line up. We figured today would be a good day," said Vargo.

Parking spots near some of the more popular stores at the Outlets were hard to find and the cold made for a brisk walk. One family from Macomb County spent the night in Frankenmuth so they could hit the stores and snap up bargains.

"All the stores are in one place. shipping away from home always seems better," said Jeresa Monroe of Clinton Township.

One thing that can reduce the number of returns is the use of gift cards.

"It's also nice I think that people want to make sure when they give to you a gift card they want you to get what you like," said Carpenter.

Several stores have enacted stricter return policies.