Saturday, October 13, 2012

The Return of Lay-Away


If you’re old enough, you might remember lay-away. You pick out your Christmas goodies in October, then pay on them until you can retrieve before Christmas.  Stores got rid of layway saying it took up too much space, but stores are bringing them back as a convenience.  I heard many stores such as K-mart aren’t charging a lay-away fee. Is lay away for you?


1.       It helps you actually budget your Christmas shopping by only buying what you can afford.

2.       You also don’t have post-holiday credit card regret.

3.       It is a great place to hide items from curious family members.

4.       Keeps you out of the mall during the holidays.

5.       You can pay online.

6.       It guarantees you’ll have the hot toy or must have item that will sell out if you wait.

7.       Since you are shopping less, you are likely to spend less money impulse buying.

8.       Save more time since you are shopping less.



1.       It limits where you shop because not everyone offers lay-away.

2.       People change their minds. The drill your husband wanted he bought himself. Some stores will allow you to return an item to stock, but charge you a restocking fee.

3.       If you don’t follow up on your payments you lose everything. The forty dollars you put down, then promptly forgot you even had a lay-way belongs to the store now. ( Most will send you email reminders.)

4.       Keeps you out of stores during the busy season (some people think this is a bad thing.)

5.       It also keeps you from the major sales because you already bought everything and put it in lay-away, probably at full price.


So now it is up to you to decide if lay-away might work for you. Keep in mind, lay-away isn't magical. You don't put something on lay-away and hope you find the money in time, you budget for it.

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