Throughout 2016, we’re bringing you a monthly series called the Smart Shopping Guide to help you save money all year long. In addition to the deals, we will also highlight items that aren’t priced to sell. Our information is gathered from sites like DealNews and DailyFinance, folks who scour the retail world to find the best and worst deals. We want to help you become a smart shopper!
The holiday season is officially over, and consumer spending has slowed to normal levels. This means retailers offer deals to attract customers back into their stores. Here are some items that are priced to sell this January, as well as a few items you’ll want to avoid this month.
Good Buy: Winter Apparel
December is typically one of the biggest months for winter apparel, but temperatures remained higher than normal last month for most parts of the U.S. With the arrival of actual winter temperatures, many retailers are offering greater discounts to push their winter weather apparel to make up for the loss last month.
Bad Buy: Spring Apparel
Retailers may be discounting their winter apparel, but don’t be fooled by the sales. Those steep discounts typically do not apply to their new spring apparel. Spring apparel typically becomes discounted closer to March.
Good Buy: Gym Memberships
Since losing weight and/or getting in better shape is one of the most popular New Year’s resolutions, gyms are ready to capitalize on the January weight loss hysteria. Be on the lookout for gyms offering membership discounts and/or waived joining fees. For those gyms not advertising discounts, just ask for them, and chances are you’ll get some sort of break on fees. Also, if you have the cash to pay for a year upfront you may get additional discounts.
Bad Buy: The Fine Print on that Gym Membership
Read the fine print when signing a gym membership. If there is a contract involved, pay special attention to any potential monthly rate increases that could be built into the supposed “deal” you’re supposedly getting. This will prevent any surprises in the future.
Good Buy: Annual White Sale Associated Items
The first “White Sale” started back in 1878 when a department store in Philadelphia established the first white sale to discount bed linens. Back then, bed linens were exclusively white in color, hence the name “White Sale.” Today, discounts now apply not only to bedding, but to towels, pillows, and other bathroom and bedroom related items. Retailers like Pottery Barn, Macy’s, and JCPenney currently offer discounts from 20-60% off.
Bad Buy: Mattresses
Though retailers are discounting all items related to mattresses, mattresses themselves are not on sale. If you’re in the market for a new mattress, it’s best to wait until holiday sales like Memorial Day, July 4th, and Labor Day to see steeper discounts.
Stay tuned in February for the next installment of our Smart Shopping Guide. Keep saving!