What to Buy (and Skip) in August 2024

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Written by Courtney Neidel
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What to Buy (and Skip) in August 2023

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By the time August arrives, Prime Day is behind us, and Labor Day savings are still a month ahead. So what deals happen in between?

Here’s your guide for what to buy (and skip) this month.

Buy: Back-to-school supplies

Back-to-school sales start in July, but you’ll find great deals in August too. Look on Amazon and Target and check out department stores and office supply chains for deals on backpacks, pens, pencils and other essentials. While it’s wise to wait until at least October to stock up on fall styles, right now is a good time to nab your student a new pair of sneakers. Footwear brands like Nike and stores like Shoe Carnival were running back-to-school sales with good savings at the time of this writing. As with any sale, remember to apply relevant coupons.

If your state participates in a back-to-school state sales tax holiday, use that window to buy the more expensive stuff sales-tax-free. Many states' dates fall in August. Here's a list of tax-free weekends for states that participate.

Skip: Amazon devices

Amazon just hosted its Prime Day sale in July, so wait to buy Amazon-specific devices until the next major promotion. If last year is any indication, you won’t have to wait long. Amazon offered Black Friday-like prices during its October Prime Day sale, and other retailers like Walmart and Target followed suit. We expect similar sales to occur around the same time this year.

Buy: Outdoor products

With summer coming to a close, you probably aren’t planning on doing much more work in the backyard. That’s exactly why outdoor maintenance products and patio furniture tend to go on sale in August. Buy these items now so you’ll be prepared for next year. If you need a new lawn mower, for example, take advantage of the deals you’ll find over the next few weeks.

🤓Nerdy Tip

You might even find a deal on a grill before outdoor cooking season ends. August is a good time to get a grill, according to Consumer Reports.

Skip: Major household items

Skip appliances and mattresses. Labor Day, which is renowned for its home sales, is coming soon on Sept. 2. If it isn’t essential for you to make a major household purchase in August, hold off until the big discount events arrive.

In the past, we’ve seen Lowe’s take up to 30% off major appliances and Bear Mattress offer $100 off any size Bear mattress online with a coupon code.

Buy: Summer clearance

As autumn draws near, it makes sense to want to add some sweaters and sweatshirts to your wardrobe. But prices at the start of any given season are generally higher than at the middle or end, so the price tag on that comfortable sweater you're eyeing might not make you feel so warm and fuzzy.

On the flip side, now’s a perfect time to purchase summer clothing, shoes and swimwear. Since the warm season is coming to a close, retailers are trying to clear out old inventory to make room for winter weather necessities. If you’re going to buy any clothes this month, you’ll be able to save more on summer staples than winter gear.

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Skip: iPhone

Pump the brakes on a new iPhone purchase for just a little while longer. We’re hearing that Apple is gearing up to release its new iPhone (or iPhones) in the fall.

Apple and third-party retailers generally offer deals on previous iPhone models in the wake of a new phone, making September or October a better time to buy for those less concerned with having the latest and greatest.

Bonus: Freebies

Consider circling these special days on your calendar: Aug. 6 is National Root Beer Float Day, and Aug. 24 is National Waffle Day. Check for free food offers on social media.