Some states have better hardware stores than others.
The socio-economic status of the area might come into play, because some of the nicest hardware stores are also the ones that get away with high prices being in close proximity to the kind of people who can afford them.
My town has a fine mix of people so both of us have discount hardware stores & a locally-owned hardware store with the best selection at the highest prices. However, they have phenomenal sales on large ticket items at varying times throughout the year. I love to look at their sales paper on the internet at least once a week. It’s not love I’m shopping at hardware stores regularly, however I love to know if grills or other outdoor items are being offered at cheap prices. For instance, I have wanted a ductless mini split for our modern family room for the past year & a half, however I patiently waited for a fine sale. My friend scored a quality ductless mini split for 50% off while both of us were in a silly close-out sale while both of us were in the Winter season. They were trying to make room for heating device & space heaters. I finally found a unbelievable ductless mini split at our number one hardware store for 40% off recently & pulled the trigger within minutes of finding out that it was available at that price. Ductless mini splits are thoUSnds of dollars at minimum, so finding an entire plan at 40% off was a major steal. It’s not everyday that you can get such a large savings on an costly appliance love a ductless mini split a/c. It also covered the cost of upgrade for the whole cooling system.