The holidays are quickly approaching, and with them come e-mails and circulars filled with special sales.
But how do you know if the sale on that item is really the best price you’ll get all year? Just because it’s on sale doesn’t mean it’s the lowest price it will be all year. Here are five items that you may not have to buy during the holiday season in order to get the best price.
1. TVs & other electronics
While you may see some crazy price cuts on TVs and other electronics on Black Friday, these deep discounts are generally on only a few sets and can be limited to off-brand models. So, if you’re looking for a deal on a TV from a particular brand name, you might want to consider waiting a couple extra months. Name-brand TVs typically go on sale right around the Super Bowl. Likewise, laptops and tablets are best purchased during the early Spring (when manufacturers tend to announce new models and retailers move to unload old ones) and digital cameras often go on sale during September (for similar reasons).
2. Jewelry & watches
Demand for jewelry and watches spike during the holiday season, so the chances of retailers offering a deal that’s truly worth your while is pretty low. If you’re looking to buy a special accessory for your loved one, consider buying ahead of time during a less demanding season. Picking up a nice bracelet or watch during the summer months could save you a solid chunk of change. Alternatively, you could play the waiting game and try to pick something up closer to the big day if you’re shopping for a wedding band. While the number of deals may go down over time, the percentage of store’s remaining stock will go up as retailers look to unload excess inventory.
3. Winter clothing
When it comes to clothing, the best deals tend to come when particular styles of apparel are out of season. If you’re looking for the best deals on winter gear, you may want to consider holding off until December or January. While it might be a little difficult getting your current wardrobe to last, that extra month or two of waiting could save you a pretty penny.
While you may be able to find some decent deals on tool collections on Black Friday, there are generally better savings to be had during the latter months of spring. Father’s Day is primetime for tool set sales, so picking up a set then and holding on to it until next year’s season might be a great way to save yourself some cash and minimize your time in busy stores.
5. Holiday decorations & wrapping supplies
While it might be tempting to load up on wrapping paper and lights when they’re prominently on display, there’s a better way to get what you need without breaking the bank. After the holidays end, decorations and wrapping supplies are marked down to an insane degree. If you’re looking for a great savings habit to get into, you may want to pick up these things right after the holidays pass and save them for the following year. Not only will you be reaping the benefits of huge savings, but it’ll be one less thing to think about during the hectic holiday season.
When it comes to saving during the holidays, being proactive is key. Shopping throughout the year can be a great way to capitalize on the right deals. It is also an easy way to minimize the chances of taking on holiday debt and, subsequently, hurting your credit score. (You can monitor how holiday shopping is affecting your credit by pulling a free annual credit report from AnnualCreditReport.com or viewing your two free credit scores each month on Credit.com.)
Of course, as with every shopping decision, you need to do your own homework and research the best plan of attack for you. For example, if waiting another couple of months to buy a TV for $50 less than you can get it now just doesn’t seem worth it to you, it may not be. Providing you take the time to perform adequate research and resist the urge to buy for the sake of buying, you should be able to come out of the holiday season in good financial shape.
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This article originally appeared on Credit.com.
Want more money-saving advice? See our Deals section.