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Shopping for furniture that suits both your style and budget is a tough, but not impossible, task. If you make your purchase at particular periods of the year when sales abound, you can save money.
Whether it’s high time to replace that secondhand Craigslist couch or revamp your outdoor space with a new patio set, here’s when to buy.
Best time to buy furniture
The best time to buy furniture depends on the type of furniture you’re buying. Indoor furniture is a bargain in the winter or summer months, while the best outdoor furniture sales happen between the Fourth of July and Labor Day. The periods for custom furniture deals vary.
It's prudent to note here how things are a bit different these days. The transition in the economy and a healing supply chain are impacting typical sales trends. Inflation is softening consumer demand and many furniture retailers have more than ample stock. If you're in the market to buy furniture, you may be pleasantly surprised by an improving selection and even discounted prices.
Indoor furniture: Winter, summer
The furniture industry tends to operate on a biannual schedule. New styles of indoor furniture hit retail floors every spring and fall, so if you’re looking to get a deal, you’ll want to start shopping in the months immediately before the new styles reach stores.
That means you’ll want to shop toward the end of winter (January and February) or the end of summer (August and September). Retailers will be discounting their old stock during these months to make room for the new styles. Presidents Day and Labor Day weekends are especially good times for sales.
Custom furniture: Varies
Those times apply just for pre-made furniture, though. Jerry Epperson, who heads up furniture industry research for investment banking firm Mann, Armistead & Epperson, makes sure to distinguish between pre-made and custom furniture.
“It’s not that much more expensive to get something made just for you,” he says. But since custom furniture is made on-demand, you won’t find the kind of discounts retailers apply when they need to move their older pre-made stock. So if you're interested in custom furniture, there’s no need to wait for sales.
Outdoor furniture: Summer
As for outdoor furniture, you’ll generally see the best sales between the Fourth of July and Labor Day. New outdoor furniture usually hits retail floors between the middle of March and the middle of April, and stores are looking to clear out their stock by August.
General furniture-buying tips
Furniture is a big purchase, so if you can't find that perfect sofa at the perfect price, be patient. If the frequent advertising you see and hear is an indication, there’s almost always a sale in the furniture industry. If what you’re looking for isn’t on sale now, it might be in a few months.
Take your time and look at multiple stores. This will not only help you find the best deals and prices, but also enable you to assemble a distinct aesthetic that's unique to your home.