This weekend is Memorial Day, which means stores hold one of the biggest sales of the year.
And with the price of gas and so many other things soaring this spring, most of us could use a deal right now.
The government's Consumer Price Index shows prices up 4.2% in the past year, the biggest jump in 13 years, making Memorial Day sales even more important than they normally are.
Julie Ramhold of DealNews.com says, "This is one of the biggest shopping holidays and is probably the biggest since Presidents Day sales."
DealNews says this weekend is a great time to buy:
- Mattresses and beds
- Large appliances
- Small kitchen appliances at department stores
- Springtime fashion
- Grills and patio sets.
Outdoor gear sales good, mattress sales great
While these are some of the first sales of the year on patio furniture, DealNews says you will find lower prices if you can wait until after the Fourth of July, when the end-of-season clearance sales begin.
"If you need one, you can find some decent deals on patio sets this weekend," Ramhold said, "especially if you shop Home Depot and Lowe's."
However, she says Memorial Day is hands down one of the best times of the year to buy a new bed or mattress.
"Tempur-Pedic started their sale May 10, and they are offering $500 off on many models," she said.
Ramhold says you should also look for the first major markdowns of the year on spring fashion.
"Shorts can be as cheap as $7 at some of these sales, and discounts, in general, can get as high as 70% depending on where you are shopping," she said.
Stores are starting to clear out their warm-weather wear as they get ready for -- hate to say it -- back to school fashion.
Warning before you buy appliances, furniture
One caution: If you are buying furniture or appliances, check on availability.
Shortages this year can mean a six-month wait for couches or a dishwasher. Appliances are dealing with computer chip shortages, while furniture made in China and Vietnam is on backorder.
So make sure the model you want is in stock, as a great deal is no deal at all if that couch doesn't show up until Christmas.
Finally, if you were hoping for big discounts on Star Wars merchandise, you missed that sale by 3 weeks: it was all on sale during "May the fourth be with you" sales on May 4.
So don't expect a great deal on that Luke Skywalker shirt, so you don't waste your money.
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