August – The Time (not) to Buy…

In August, there are usually lots of sales on things like school supplies, and it doesn’t take much shopping around to find good deals in that area. Also, in some states (like here in Texas), there are sometimes “tax holidays” for school supplies, which sometimes extends to other items such as children’s clothing. Depending on the sales tax rate, this can be a substantial incentive to buy these items.

However, there are several things that are typically a better bargain in September or October, including some big-ticket items that might surprise you.

Things to Avoid in August

washing machine

Photo Credit: aLindquist via Compfight cc

  • Home appliances. New models of major appliances typically come out in September, so if you can wait until late September or early October (and you are ok with buying last year’s model), you can save 20% or more on your new refrigerator or washer/dryer combo.
  • Patio furniture. You can see patio furniture “on sale” in August, but if you wait a month or so, you will see even better prices. October discounts can be over 50%.
  • Grills. Here again, you will see some discounts for grills in August, but the big push to sell grills is Labor Day weekend, when you will see some good discounts, especially if you can get a floor demo. Just make sure that you have the time, tools, and skill needed to assemble it yourself (or know a friend who can be bribed with an invitation to your Labor Day party), or the savings could be negated by having to pay somebody to assemble it for you at weekend overtime rates.
  • Fall and Winter clothing. Most merchants are just ramping up for Fall in August, and aren’t ready to discount until October or later. On the other hand, you can find really good deals on Summer duds, assuming they aren’t all sold out.
  • Jeans. While you might think of jeans as “school supplies,” they typically have more of a discount in October. However, if your state has a “tax holiday” weekend, it might be worth getting your new jeans then.
  • Mobile phones. The best time to get a new phone is usually just after a new model comes out, provided you don’t have your heart set on the new model. The introduction time varies a bit from year to year, but for the last couple of years, September and October have seen better mobile phone deals.


Leave a Reply