Smart Buying

Best Buys During Labor Day Sales, 2014

You'll find great deals on appliances, bicycles, outdoor items and more over the long holiday weekend.

Many retailers will be marking down items for Labor Day sales this weekend, but sometimes it’s hard to know whether you’re really getting a good deal. In fact, more than half of those surveyed recently by deal site Offers.com said they don't know which sales are best. Well, we can help.

 

Here are five items that retailers will mark down most during Labor Day sales -- as well as items you should hold off buying because you’ll find better deals on them later in the month or into fall.

Appliances. Home-improvement retailers and department stores typically mark down appliances for sales over long holiday weekends -- and Labor Day is no exception. Yet, only 15% of the consumers surveyed by Offers.com knew that there will be great discounts on appliances this weekend. Look for discounts of up to 45% off major appliances, says Offers.com Vice President Howard Schaffer. If you make purchases online, you’ll likely find coupon codes for an additional 5% to 10% off.

Bicycles. Labor Day -- and throughout September -- is a good time to get a deal on a bike as retailers slash prices on outdoor gear, says Kristin Cook, managing editor of Ben’s Bargains. For example, online discount cycling product retailer Bike Nashbar is offering savings of up to 75% on bicycles and gear during its final summer blowout sale.

Camping gear. Look for discounts at retailers such as REI, which has an annual Labor Day sale. Cook says consumers can find great deals on tents, backpacks and other outdoor gear.

Mattresses. Expect discounts of up to 60% from retailers such as Sears, which already has marked down prices and is offering free delivery on mattresses that are $599 or more. Macy’s also is among the retailers marking down their mattress inventory.

Patio furniture. Now that summer’s almost over, retailers will be putting patio furniture on clearance. Last year, Lowe’s, Target and Walmart took up to 75% off patio furniture over Labor Day weekend, according to DealNews.com. Lowe’s already is advertising markdowns of up to 75% for its sale this weekend. And Kmart is offering savings of up to 70% on patio furniture. You’ll see grills marked down during Labor Day weekend sales, but the discounts will improve as the month goes on, according to DealNews.com.

It’s not the best time to buy …

Electronics. Although about one-fourth of the consumers surveyed by Offers.com said they expect good sales on electronics over Labor Day weekend, the real deals appear in November around Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving.

Fall apparel. Again, consumers surveyed by Offers.com mistakenly thought Labor Day sales offered a good chance to get deals on fall clothing. You will find any remaining summer apparel deeply discounted, but prices on colder-weather apparel will drop more in late fall.

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