Shopping End of Year Sales to Save Money

As I purchased a Halloween costume for my youngest daughter this year, I complained to the cashier at the store about the price of Halloween costumes. (Yes, I’m one of those shoppers!) If you have more than one child, spending $15 and upwards for one costume can really crack a dent in the piggy bank.

The cashier nodded and agreed with my complaint, and then she offered this jewel of advice: last year, she rummaged through the leftover costumes after October 31 and purchased a variety of them at a deep discount, paying less than $5 each for each costume. This year, she pulled the costumes out of the storage chest for her kids and let them go through and choose one. Her kids were excited, and she had clothed them in new Halloween costumes for less than I had spent on one!

Genius, I told her! Why hadn’t I thought of that?

I know this strategy may not work for older kids, who often are set in their plans for what they want to be for Halloween, or for kids who really love a particular character or movie that comes out during the year. However, it would definitely work for younger children and for children who don’t have an idea of what they want to dress like for Halloween. Plus, leftover costumes can be used as dress up outfits or, if they will remain large enough, saved for another year.

I am generally an end of the year/holiday/season shopper, though I don’t always use the deep savings the best to my ability. For instance, I didn’t hit clearance racks after summer this year to stock up on clothes for next year. The cashier told me she did this, spending a day at the outlet mall when Carters and Osh Kosh put everything on an end of the season clearance. She bought a size up and left with enough clothes to make it through next summer; and she didn’t shell out full price for anything. Honestly, this slipped my mind. Had I thought about it, I would have done the same.

I do use this strategy after Christmas, though. In fact, I spend a day shopping for next year’s gifts I can give to teachers, friends and neighbors. I love stores like JoAnn and Michaels for this reason. They offer a variety of really cute gift ideas, and I can always find a coupon for 40-50% off. I store everything I purchase in a separate plastic tub and keep it with the Christmas decorations so I can find the gifts as soon as we begin hanging holly around the house. I go through what I purchased and think about the people for whom I may be giving gifts this year – gymnastic coach, teacher’s helper, new neighbor with whom I’ve become friends – and then I don’t have to go out and pay full price for these gifts, which really saves me a lot each holiday season.

Do you use end of the season/holiday sales to stock up on items?

What do you think?

Shopping End of Year Sales to Save Money

Kathy Murdock works as a full time writer and web designer. Recently planted in the middle of the deep south from the busy streets of Los Angeles, when she's not coding Wordpress websites or writing about women in business and thrifty motherhood, Kathy spends time photographing alligators, playing with her family, and running. ... More

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