Even though this is the time of year when we spend the most, there are some items you should leave off the list. Hit the jump to check out the top six things you should not buy before Christmas and find out when the best deals for those items are!
Unseasonably warm weather has left scarves, coats, flannel pajamas and even luxury items, like cashmere and fur, out in the cold this year. That means shoppers can expect those items to be even more discounted than usual after the 25th, according to Christine Frietchen, editor-in-chief of ConsumerSearch.com.
If you have your heart set on buying a few of those things as a gift for a family member or friend, Frietchen advises getting them a gift card instead and suggesting a shopping trip on Dec. 27. “You’ll be able to get so much more,” she said.
But if you must have that cashmere turtleneck in eggplant and not olive, don’t hold off, added Marshal Cohen, chief industry analyst at the market research firm NPD Group.
In anticipation of slower sales, retailers have limited inventory and may sell out of some items well before the real sales start. “You’ll get a really good deal but you may not find your color or your size,” Cohen said. This year, “retailers would rather sell out than sell off.”
For those who missed the unbelievable Black Friday prices on televisions, you’re out of luck. “The TV prices on Black Friday were as good as they’ve ever been,” said Steve Baker, analyst at NPD Group.
Shoppers were able to nab 42-inch TVs under $200 and 50-inch sets for less than $500. And those record-lows aren’t coming around again anytime soon, he said.
However, there’s still hope of fetching deals nearly as good in the New Year. In January, new products are introduced at the annual Consumer Electronics Show and electronics retailers start clearing out inventory to make room for the latest models, Frietchen said.
Super Bowl sales come later in the month and you can expect even more discounts follow in March and April, when Japanese manufacturers end their fiscal year. “You will see some liquidation prices there,” added Baker.
4. Holiday Decorations
Expect discounts to the tune of 75% or even more on wrapping paper, ribbons, ornaments, holiday housewares and other seasonal items post-Christmas.
“It is the best time to buy everything you are going to need for the next holiday season,” said Jeanette Pavini, a savings expert with Coupons.com. Just be prepared for slim pickings in some categories, especially when it comes to holiday decorations.
And don’t pass up on deals on gift baskets, chocolates, spirits and other perishable goods just because they are holiday-themed. “Look beyond the bow,” she said.
3. Linens and Bedding
“While most people know by now that the fabulous velvet Christmas tree skirt you just had to have will likely be 50% less if you wait till after Christmas, what most people don’t know is that other home décor gets discounted in January, too,” noted stylist Jene Luciani.
In fact, January has been the best time to buy linens and bedding for over 100 years, thanks to John Wanamaker’s popular marketing strategy “The White Sale,” added consumer savings expert Kendal Perez.
Expect to see sheets sets for 50% off and winter-weight sets, like flannel, discounted even more at stores like Macy’s and Bed Bath Beyond, she said.
Around this time of year, we are bombarded by commercials where loved ones are surprised by a special sparkling gift under the tree. But no matter how much a shopper wants to give their loved one a velvet box, they would be wise to hold off on making an expensive jewelry purchase.
“To avoid pre-holiday jewelry price gouging, wait until after the New Year, and even well after Valentines Day — the jewelry industry’s “slow” season — for the best prices,” Luciani said. That’s when prices get cut in half at department stores and boutiques.
1. Gym Memberships & Fitness Equipment
One of the most popular New Year’s resolutions will be a little easier to keep, thanks to steep sales on gym memberships and fitness equipment after Christmas.
Expect to see great promotions and cheap trial memberships at gyms on local deal sites like Groupon and LivingSocial, said Brad Olson, founder of Gottadeal.com.
“Gyms know that this is their one opportunity a year to really cash in and offer the best deals,” said savings expert Jeanette Pavini. But don’t stop there, she advised. There’s also room to negotiate on registration and initial fees as well as getting around those burdensome long-term contracts.
Those who prefer privacy can look out for sales on equipment from brands like Bowflex and Life Fitness, added Brad Wilson, founder of BradsDeals.com.