Keep your eyes peeled in September for seasonal sales as well as unusual clearances.
New cars: Conventional wisdom has been that the end of the model year is the best time to buy, as dealers try to sell off old merchandise to make room for the new.
“If you are in love with a particular model, you can find it in the color and with the equipment you want,” says Jack Nerad, executive market analyst for Kelley Blue Book’s kbb.com. “There are probably great Labor Day specials all over the place.”
You’ve probably been advised to consider depreciation in value when buying a car that’s already nearly a year old. But Nerad says depreciation isn’t as important “if you’re going to keep it forever.” Plus, with low interest rates, you’ll be able to pay less over the life of a car loan than in previous years.
Car accessories: Looking to pimp that ride, whether it’s new or used?
“There’s an increase in deals on auto goods in September, particularly in the first two weeks — accessories like floor mats, brake pads and wipers,” says DealNews features director Lindsay Sakraida.
“At this time of year [when you find discounts], it’s because they had a slow month in television sales.”
Butler says he just scored a great bargain on a 52-inch-screen model and a 43-inch one. “I ended up getting two for the price of one — two for what I budgeted.”
Home goods: Sakraida says DealNews last September documented a jump in sales of home goods, including bedding and towels, especially from retailers Kohl’s and Walmart. Kohl’s has consistently offered coupons each September that can be stacked with free online shipping, Sakraida notes.
Butler says the spike in home goods sales this time each year is tied to the bridal registry season. “September and October are the second highest group of months for bridal. You’ll see a lot of special promotions in the home stores,” he says. “It’s not unusual to see a fall white sale.”
Also look for: Back-to-school clearances, plus sales at Bath & Body Works, Men’s Wearhouse, Forever 21, Sears and Eddie Bauer.
Airfare: You might want to wait before buying those plane tickets. “It may be tempting,” Sakraida says, “but it may be better to book in October, because we saw a lot of really great sales from Virgin America, Frontier and Southwest” at that time last year.
Laptops: “You’ve basically missed out on the back-to-school deals,” Sakraida says. You’ll find better prices if you can wait, as with other electronics, for the holiday season.
– By Lauren Davidson, Atlanta Bargain Hunter