When it comes to sales, end-of-the-season shopping can often save you a lot of money. Due to the unseasonably warm weather in many states this winter, you can find excellent deals on winter wear right now, without even waiting for the end of the season.
But in general, if you shop out-of-season, you can often find great deals. Spring and summer merchandise usually goes on sale in June and July to make way for Fall clothing. Winter and fall clothing is often on sale in January and February. If you plan ahead, you can save money by purchasing your clothing when it goes on sale.
You can also find that prices are low on items when the demand for them is low. Winter is a good time to purchase a lawnmower or grill. Summer could be a good time to shop for heavy curtains and bedding.
Many sale-shoppers shop ahead for their children. I have a friend that buys next year's coat when this year's coats are on sale. This is a good method, but can be a bit of a miss at some times. I did this with my daughter, only to find that she still wore a size 6-9 months at 18 months. All of the next summer clothing I bought her didn't fit until it was winter.
If you are purchasing ahead of time for a children keep a few rules in mind. If you have several children that are fairly close in age, you probably won't risk too much by buying some items a year in advance. There is a pretty good chance that it will fit someone. Otherwise, I would stick with the standards. Onsies, t-shirts and jeans are items that can be worn year-round, swimsuits and snowsuits are not.
For the fast growing child, or the mom who needs something new for herself, it is nice that stores put clothing on sale before the season is really over. Many parts of the country are still experiencing hot weather for a few months after June. Buying summer clothes on sale during this time could result in a few months of wear before the weather changes. The same goes for winter clothing. You can also shop for items that you can wear year-round. T-shirts, jeans and even light sweaters can be worn all year - giving you more wear for your dollar.
Keep in mind that just because an item is marked down doesn't make it a good deal. The best way to know if something is really on sale is to know what it usually costs. Buying something you don't need is never a bargain. It is a waste of money if you never use the item. And if you put it on a credit card, you are paying more than you think. The interest will add up over the years.
Shopping the sales actually takes a little bit of work. There are many times that you will go into several stores and walk out with nothing. But each time you shop, you are educating yourself about what things cost and where the best deals are found. Take the time to learn how to really bargain shop. It can save you a lot of money.
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