When Is The Best Time To Buy Almost Anything?

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I've noticed that there are times of the month when retailers and other businesses seem to work harder to move their product.  Car dealers pay their banks or "flooring" company for every car that is on their lots on the first of the month (there are exceptions).  Other businesses have their own cycle for when they need to get stuff moving.  With that in mind I did some research to see if there are other products that are sensitive to a particular part of the calendar or some cycle.  Here goes.



Holiday Airfare:  September.  Some sites mentioned that Tuesdays and Wednesdays are the cheapest days to fly.

New Cars: Generally the last day or two of the month and the very best deals may be had in September when dealers need to make room for cars from the new model year.

Used Cars:  December.  Dealers are anxious to go into the New Year with as small an inventory as possible as demand dwindles.

Appliances:  September & October for the same reason as cars: new models are coming in and the prior year's models need to go to make room.  Having worked in sales I can tell you I was more motivated at the end of any month to give a customer the best deal because I wanted to get my commission check as big as I could and we tended to be thinking about that more on the last few days of the month.  This is going to hold true for anything that is sold by a commissioned salesperson.

Grills: October.  This is about the last month that stores want these taking up floor space and they also don't want them taking up valuable warehouse space.

Lawn Mowers:  See grills.

Computers: November, especially Black Friday and Cyber Monday.  August is another good month as manufacturers and retailers target college students who are heading to school.  I've seen very good deals in early November as retailers try to get an early start on the holiday season.

Weddings:  It's cheaper to get married in December and January when folks are eager to rent space for receptions and even wedding dress shops are eager for any customer in the dead of winter.  Same for flowers.  A elderly friend of mine once said that true love was a spring or summer wedding because, "Any dog will come in out of the cold."  I've never gotten that bit of lore :)

Televisions:  Aside from the holiday shopping season, some of the very best sales will occur the last few weeks of January as we head towards the Super Bowl.

Carpeting/Flooring:  January. I spent some time working in this industry as a part-time endeavor while in school.  January is the slowest month so the best deals were offered that month.  It wasn't unusual to work an entire day in January and not have a single customer come through the door.  Most folks who sell flooring are on commission so make sure you haggle a bit once you have their first written quote.  Also, shop at least two stores but three is better and let everyone know you are getting multiple quotes.

Cameras:  January.

Furniture: January.

Gym:  June. Memberships really drop off at the beginning of summer so memberships are offered at their most aggressive prices in June.

Patio Furniture:  August.  Plenty of summer left but this stuff is big and nobody wants to fill their warehouse up with last years furniture when next spring rolls around.

Coats:  March.  This is about as long as retailers want winter clothing out, especially bulky coats.  Every year brings new styles so they really do have to get rid of everything from the current model year.

Kitchenware:  April and May.

Mattresses: May.  The new models begin coming in around June so the old stuff must go.

Vacuum Cleaners:  June.  New models coming in.  By the way, why would we want to clean a vacuum?  A vacuum should be empty.  Okay, I'm just being silly.

Wrapping Paper: January.  Of course!

Please leave comments with any ideas from your own experience that could be appended to this article.  Now, go spend some money! 






erick99 (rep: 15.9k) posted May 01, 2012
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18 Comments
MaryRolle
I want to buy some hardwood flooring next year so it looks like January for me. Thanks!!
MaryRolle (rep: 23) posted May 01, 2012
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lilywow
I would like to go on a cruise, so I guess it's Hurricane season for me.
lilywow (rep: 8.31k) posted May 01, 2012
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erick99
My parents went on a cruise in August and spent two days traveling near a hurricane. All guests were required to stay in their rooms and were provided dry food to eat and non-alcoholic drinks. It was something of an adventure and quite an experience. Everyone got a voucher for a discount for a future cruise.
erick99 (rep: 15.9k) posted May 01, 2012
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Jameson99
Maybe I can get dad to get me a new computer in August before I start my 2nd year.
Jameson99 (rep: 19) posted May 01, 2012
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lilywow
oh believe me, I know about cruising during hurricane season. It's quite an adventure. I've done it before and I'd do it again LOL. I do love the Carribbean weather around September and October so there is no stopping me.
lilywow (rep: 8.31k) posted May 01, 2012
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encorez
I going to have to disagree with this post.... I do alot of walking around stores, and there are sales all year round on everything, if you are willing to walk, you can find the best deals. Seasonal is a no-brainer, and all the rest depends on the stores and what extra inventory they want to get rid of. I always watch, and wait for the 75% and 90% off sales. This internet shopping is good, but not the best.....
encorez (rep: 9.95k) posted May 01, 2012
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erick99
In general that is very true, encorez. But there are times of the year when you will do even better. Having sold stuff for 18 years I speak from experience. When I was in the computer industry you could get a great deal anytime if you worked at it but, it was way easier in Jan/Feb which was our slowest months. We are offered better prices up front and you didn't have to work too hard to get a great deal. The same applied to flooring. But, you are right, you can get great deals all year round. But, there are times of the year when vendors have an incentive to make it a lot easier for you :)
erick99 (rep: 15.9k) posted May 01, 2012
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encorez
One thing, it is cheaper to get married after the new year, not the cost of the wedding but what you will pay on taxes....if you both have good jobs, the taxes are higher on married than on single. I learned that mistake. It cost $1600 more to get hitched in October than wait till January.
encorez (rep: 9.95k) posted May 01, 2012
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erick99
Great point on taxes and marriage!!
erick99 (rep: 15.9k) posted May 01, 2012
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erick99
I've found, having been married twice, that it is even cheaper not to be married lol (but the psychological and physiological advantages of marriage far outweigh any monetary concerns).
erick99 (rep: 15.9k) posted May 01, 2012
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encorez
and lets face it, this economy we are in, messes with all logic.....lol
encorez (rep: 9.95k) posted May 01, 2012
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erick99
I have found it easier to negotiate the price of almost anything during the recession. And, I love to negotiate, it was something I learned from my day (he's probably in heaven trying to get a better cloud or something).
erick99 (rep: 15.9k) posted May 01, 2012
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encorez
^ ditto, my old man would go to flee markets and negotiate ( nice word for it ) down pennies and be happy........lol
encorez (rep: 9.95k) posted May 01, 2012
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erick99
I think the best one my dad did was getting a discount on a 'fridge because it had a small scratch on the BACK! Nobody was ever going to see that scratch but he insisted on the discount. It was great training for me :)
erick99 (rep: 15.9k) posted May 01, 2012
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gangstabarbie
i feel like being on DP could be soooo good yet soooo bad. good because i am learning to save money- bad because ive become so frugal i feel guilty for paying full price for anything. even a smallest jar of mayonnaise i paid $4 for. :(
gangstabarbie (rep: 9.65k) posted May 01, 2012
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erick99
I'm on a budget that is so very, very tight that deals are how I survive. As the recession ends I should be able to get a staff professorship and that will double my income overnight. Adjuncts make about 40% to 50% of what a staff member makes and zero benefits. To make that I have to teach more classes in a year than a staff member and I don't get summers off. It will be so nice when I am making twice what I make now and have June/July/August off (though I will probably still work summers just for the extra income). So, deals allow my sons and I to get by a little better. And, yeah, if I pay retail I hang my head in shame. Can't even look in the mirror. lol
erick99 (rep: 15.9k) posted May 01, 2012
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nimase85
Thanks for sharing this list is a good thing to remember
nimase85 (rep: 15.4k) posted May 01, 2012
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shimisi
Oh no. We're doomed to be consumers all year. Nice "roundup" of best times to buy. Thanks.
shimisi (rep: 56.7k) posted May 02, 2012
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