I used to be known for my quality yard sales. My neighbors would actually start asking in mid-June when I was going to have a yard sale. I made sure everything was top-of-the-line as opposed to looking like something I pulled out of the basement. I didn’t do broken, stained or torn items, and yet I noticed people would not touch a parka in the summer. We live in the snow belt where there is a guarantee of snow every year.
If you can visualize six months in advance then you can shop out of season. Items you should buy out of season because the clearance prices are amazing.
*Coats, sweaters, gloves, and boots
*Snow shovels and snow blowers
*Pool floats, grills, and camping equipment
*Snow skis, snow shoes, sleds
* Seasonal decorations as long as that season has just passed
* Valentines and egg dye
*Gifts sets-are a great deal after Christmas and Mother’s Day
*Storage boxes/units (These go on sale in January, but go down in price until August where the price goes back up for college-bound students.)
*Have a college bound student. Do not buy supplies in the months of July-September when everything is at its highest. Stores in the college town often jump up prices on needed items for college such as dorm fridges or under the bed storage organizers.
* Pickling and salsa packs, canning jars, and Sure Gel. Come July, they’ll be full price and in short supply.
*Liquor—all though there isn’t too much off season. Champagne is on sale after New Year’s. Flavored liqueurs go on sale about the same time. You can store wine for years, if stored on its side.
* School supplies go on sale in July. Trust me as a parent and a teacher you will never be able to buy pencils or pencil sharpeners for a penny the rest of the year.
* Towels and sheets. Towels are always a popular shower gift in neutral colors
*Specialty picture frames- make sure that there is no actual year date on it.
WHAT NOT TO BUY
*Most foods because they do expire (unless canned)
*Clothing or shoes for a growing child. You never know what size they might be in six months.
*foundation/cosmetics-skin tones change, as do personal tastes
*vitamins—unless the date is really far into the future
*any popular toy you think your child will love. In six month they will have forgotten their love affair with said toy and moved onto something else.
The best way to decide if something is a good out of season deal is to ask yourself these three questions. Did you use it or something similar in the past? Is it something you will need like a coat or a snow shovel? Is it something you always wanted but could not justify the expense? Then it is a good deal. Make sure it isn’t broken or opened. Often things on clearance are damaged. There is a reason they write AS IS across the box.
Always check the clearance section or back end caps to see what has been moved to clearance. Often people sell items they don’t need at bargain basement prices because they are moving into an apartment or another climate zone. Winter will come, just like summer shows up every year.