In the market for new or used furniture, and wondering when to shop for the best deal? Here's the scoop on the best time to buy everything from sofas to patio furniture.
Best Months to Buy New Indoor Furniture: January or July
New furniture styles hit the showroom floor twice a year (in February and August). Since stores need to make room for all those new arrivals, you can expect to see drastic price cuts on all remaining inventory. This includes floor models, so be sure to ask about sample pieces, if you don't see them priced.
Most furniture stores are willing to haggle, so don't hesitate to ask them to sweeten the deal further with a discount or a freebie. You might be surprised by what they offer to throw in.
Best Months for Buying New Outdoor Furniture: August Through October
Make do with some folding chairs, until the end-of-season sales hit in late summer and early autumn. Stores don't want to store their unsold patio furniture until next year, so everything will be deeply discounted. This makes it the perfect time to save or snag better quality furniture than you'd normally be able to afford. Just don't wait too long to shop. The best selection will go to those who shop early. Talk to a sales associate to find out when they plan to start marking things down. Better yet, see if they'll give you a call as soon as the markdowns happen.
Best Months to Buy Office Furniture: April (After Tax Day) or August
Tax time is a good time to buy office furniture. Start looking for deals as soon as you get your taxes filed. If that isn't the best time of year for you to shop, you can also find good deals during the back-to-school shopping season in August and September. If you really want to max out your savings, wait until the end of September to shop. Stores will be looking to sell off their floor models and overstocks, now that the back-to-school rush has passed.
Best Months to Buy Used Furniture
Summer is prime moving season, so thrift stores and consignment stores are usually flush with inventory during July and August. As families pull up stakes to move to new digs, lots of high-quality furniture gets left behind. Stop in weekly to see what stores have gotten in.
Another good time to shop thrift stores: January and February. As people dive into their New Year's resolution to declutter and get organized, lots of good furniture gets donated. This means a bigger, better selection than you'll find at other times of the year.
Yard sales are also worth checking out. Moving sales and estate sales usually have the best used furniture, but wealthier neighborhoods are also a good bet. Prices are negotiable at yard sales, so be ready to haggle for a better deal. If you prefer to shop from home, check out Facebook Marketplace and Craiglist for furniture deals. Both sites make it easy to search for just what you're looking for. Stuff goes fast, so you need to check often and act fast when you see something you want. Finally, keep your eyes open for going-out-of-business sales at local furniture stores.
Refresh Your Bargaining Skills
If you're a person who always pays the price on the sticker, it's time to sharpen your bargain shopping skills. When buying furniture, the sticker price is almost never the final price. Be prepared with an opening offer that is 10 percent or more below the lowest price listed.
If you find a piece that you love, write down the name and model number, so you can go home and compare prices before making your purchase. You may just find that another store has a better deal. Use this information to go back and negotiate a better price with the store where you first saw the piece. If they won't play ball, go ahead and buy it from the store where you found the best price.