Labor Day weekend is here and as well as being the last few days of the Minnesota State Fair, it's also a significant weekend for retailers.
Prices will be slashed at stores across the country on certain items, giving shoppers an opportunity to save a few bucks ahead of the busy holiday season.
So here's a look at what you should be buying (if you need it, of course) and what you should steer clear of, given that much steeper discounts on certain items will appear during the Black Friday sales.
What to buy
With summer winding down and retailers switching out their inventory, now is a great time to buy a new grill, shorts and Hawaiian shirts, patio furniture, gardening tools and lawn mowers.
Now we're not saying you must rush out and buy a car immediately, but BestBlackFriday.com notes that 2018 model cars are likely to be marked down around this time of year in anticipation of the arrival of the 2019 models, and you'll likely get some very attractive financing deals.
Similar to cars, major retailers are expecting a suite of new appliance models in soon, and Home Depot is already offering 40 percent off its appliances. That said, you can expect to see discounts of up to 50 percent at retailers come Black Friday, so you might want to wait too.
DealsNews.com notes that Shoes.com, Crocs and Clarks are all offering big online discounts, with Shoes.com knocking off 75 percent from certain men's, women's and kids' shoes, plus 30 percent off extra using a coupon code.
Stores are currently offering discounts of up to 50 percent off, which can result in even bigger savings if you track down some coupon codes. Overstock.com, Sears and Macy's are the places to look for deals.
With the summer over, travel sites like Expedia, Priceline and Hotels.com tend to offer discounts at the start of September – a good time to book a fall trip. You can expect to find more deals offered come Black Friday too.
What to avoid
With the biggest shopping sales of the year, the post-Thanksgiving/Black Friday maelstrom, yet to come, here are some items you should wait on before blowing any cash.
We're talking TVs, video games, tablets and computers. Whatever deals are being offered on Labor Day weekend – and there will be some, no doubt about it – you're going to find so many more on offer come the Black Friday/Cyber Monday period in November.
Similar to electronics, because toys do go on sale during the Black Friday period, but actually the best time to get a discount on toys is in the two weeks before Christmas, as retailers desperately try to move unsold merchandise before the big day, as CNBC reports.
CBS News makes this commonsense observation. It's always more expensive to buy clothes for the season that's about to start, so if you're looking to buy lightweight jackets and fleeces to get you through the fall, wait until winter is nearly here.
Well, this makes sense. We're just 2 months from Halloween so costumes will get increasingly expensive. If you're going to buy one, leave it till the days after Halloween, BestBlackFriday.com suggests.