The best and worst things to buy in August

WASHINGTON — August may signify that summer is winding down, but many summer-themed deals are heating up.

DealNews lists some of the best and worst things to buy in August and summer items top the list of things to purchase:

  • Summer apparel. Clothing for summer goes on clearance as retailers work to make room for autumn apparel. Some stores will take 40 percent to 70 percent off on the summer apparel items.
  • Patio furniture. Typically, outdoor furniture sales see an uptick in August and September, but this year, many stores are offering above-average sales. Stores such as Home Depot, Sears, Walmart and Target have discounts of up to 75 percent off.
  • Grills. August is the time for sizzling sales on grills. It’s the best time of the year for discounts on grills and accessories. Sears, Lowe’s, Target and Walmart offer discounts of up to 50 percent off. Also, search for coupons that can take off an extra 10 percent to 15 percent off.
  • Back-to-school items. As the beginning of school creeps up, August marks the best time to snag deals as more stores cut prices. Stores, such as American Eagle and Levi’s, took 40 to 50 percent off in August 2013. DealNews says there could be a similar trend this year.

    Also, Walmart has good dorm room deals. Last year, the retailer had futons at $89, desks at $29 and backpacks at $10.

  • Laptops. With back-to-school sales, come deals on laptops, too. The 15-inch systems with Intel’s current processor have rock bottom prices around $380. Also, when it comes to Apple products, retailers such as Best Buy can be a great place to get good deals. In late July, Best Buy beat Apple’s back-to-school deals by $200.
  • LCD HDTVs. Cool off indoors during August’s heat with a reasonably-priced 42-inch LCD HDTV. Brand-name, 42-inch LCD HDTVs hit their lowest price of the year coming in at $299, roughly $40 less than 2014’s average for the size category.

There are some things to avoid buying in August, too, DealNews notes.

  • Apple devices. In the past, Apple releases new models in September and October. There are much better discounts once the current devices are bumped to previous-generation status, so hold out for the next-best Apple gadget to come along.
  • Waterproof cases. The cases that can keep your cellphone and other electronics dry may not be worth the money — even during pool season. DealNews says it used a simple Ziploc bag on devices and found the same result for very little money.

DealNews points out that shoppers should be on the lookout for Labor Day sales in August. Since this year Labor Day is on Sept. 1, those offers will start kicking off in late August.

Editor’s note: A previous version of this story didn’t reflect the correct pricing information on laptops.

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