Best Things to Buy at Memorial Day Sales

Expect to find appliances, TVs, mattresses and more on sale over the long holiday weekend.

Memorial Day sales typically offer great savings opportunities on a variety of items. Some of the best deals in 2014 will be on spring clothing, appliances and mattresses, says Vice President Howard Schaffer. Retailers trying to unload warm-weather apparel that didn't sell because of the prolonged cold weather will offer discounts of up to 80%, as well as coupons that will bring down prices even more. And Schaffer says that consumers can save 30% to 70% on appliances and mattresses during Memorial Day sales. Residents of Texas can save even more if they take advantage of the sales-tax holiday on Energy Star appliances and products May 24-26.

You'll see lots of sales on outdoor items, such as grills and patio furniture. However, Schaffer and the deal experts at recommend waiting a few months until these items are marked down much more at the end of summer.

Here are several of the sales that already have started and those that will begin in the coming days. Schaffer says the sales with the deepest discounts should start appearing Friday, and some will be one-day only.

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Apparel. Many clothing stores will offer additional discounts on clearance items during Memorial Day sales, and consumers can expect some online retailers to offer free shipping, according to Aeropostale has marked down everything, including new arrivals by 50%. American Eagle Outfitters is offering an additional 40% off clearance items that already are marked down up to 50%. JCPenney has hundreds of items for men, women and children on sale for $20 or less. Gap is offering daily deals online and discounts of up to 50% online and in stores. Nordstrom's "half-yearly sale" begins Wednesday, which means women’s and kids' clothing will be 40% off and there will be free shipping on online purchases, according to Lands’ End has markdowns of up to 65%. Sears has discounted summer apparel 50% to 60% and is offering additional discounts of up to 25% for online orders of $150 or more.

Appliances. Best Buy has marked down major appliances 10% to 25% for its Memorial Day sale. Select appliances at Home Depot are up to 45% off. Lowe’s already has discounts ranging from 10% to more than 30% on select appliances. Sears is offering up to 30% off its Kenmore appliances and up to 40% off other appliances as part of its pre-Memorial Day sale. Look for discounts to continue through the weekend.

Camping gear. You can save up to 50% on tents, sleeping bags, backpacks and other outdoor essentials during's Memorial Day sale. Plus, you can get free two-day shipping on orders of $50 or more. Outdoor gear retailer REI is having its biggest sale of the year through May 26, with up to 30% off clothing, shoes, camping gear and more.

HDTVs. If you missed the great deals on HDTVS in January and February, you can take advantage of Memorial Day sale markdowns. Best Buy is offering up to 25% off select 22-inch to 55-inch HDTVs and free shipping for online purchases. Amazon has discounts ranging from 20% to 50% on HDTVs, DVD players, streaming media players and television accessories as part of its Memorial Day sale.

Mattresses. You’ll find some of the best sales at Macy’s and Sears. Macy’s sale starts May 21, but you can reserve your purchase online now. The retailer will be offering an additional 10% off mattresses that are marked down 30% to 50%. Sears is offering savings of up to 60% on mattresses, plus an extra 10% off mattresses priced more than $599 and free delivery.

Tools. Sears has discounts of up to 50% on select power tools and 20% of lawn and garden power tools. Markdowns on tools at Lowe’s range from 10% to more than 30%.

Find your own best deal

Plenty of other retailers will have sales Memorial Day weekend. Start by checking out the lists of Memorial Day sales and coupons at Amazon also has a long list of Memorial Day deals. You might also want to visit some of our favorite deal sites as the weekend approaches to look for Memorial Day discounts.

Cameron Huddleston
Former Online Editor,

Award-winning journalist, speaker, family finance expert, and author of Mom and Dad, We Need to Talk.

Cameron Huddleston wrote the daily "Kip Tips" column for She joined Kiplinger in 2001 after graduating from American University with an MA in economic journalism.