January: Best time to buy a computer, holiday goods
• Other people’s unused gift cards: Consumers with unwanted gift cards hit sites like CardCash.com, GiftCards.com, and even eBay after Christmas to sell them at discounted prices. Find out how else you can get paid for your gift cards and other clutter.
• Wrapping paper: Stores slash prices on gift wrap, holiday cards, and Christmas decorations in the weeks following the busy shopping season. Buy now; they’ll keep till next year. Once they’re shredded, try out these genius uses for leftover wrapping paper.
• Bed linens: Retailers offer deep discounts on sheets, towels, and blankets in January. “White sales” actually date back to 1878, when a Philadelphia department store held a “White Sale” on linens to help keep linen makers in business during a slow period. Just watch out for these things to know when you’re buying new sheets.
• Computer: Starting in January, keep an eye on PC prices; companies offer discounts on older models to prepare for the upcoming release of the newest systems. Find out what tech products you should (and shouldn’t) buy refurbished.
February: Best time to buy furniture, washer and dryer, wedding items
• Wedding: Once you’ve finished these must-do’s for newly engaged couples, it’s time to start planning the wedding. Tying the knot in this off-season month means taking full advantage of discounted prices on reception venues, catering, and photography. Plan around the Presidential holidays, though, and beware of nasty weather. Check out these other tips on saving money during President’s Day sales.
• Air conditioner: During cold weather months, many appliance stores offer units at cheap prices—if you can find them. Once you have your hands on one, these AC hacks will keep your home cooler for less money.
• Furniture: New inventory hits showrooms in February, so retailers often offer deals around now. Politely negotiate on good-condition floor models, and you can often pay much less than cost. Just make sure you know how to spot poor quality furniture before you strike a deal.
• Washer and dryer: New models arrive in winter, meaning you’ll spot deals on last year’s appliances. Don’t be afraid to haggle.