Extreme Couponing: When to Expect a Sale

Standard

photo credit: willardeastelementary.edu

At some point, you are going to want to purchase or stock up on an item that seems never to be on sale.  If you’re like me, your newly-shaped frugal mindset just won’t allow you to buy without the combination of a good sale and high-value coupon.  You’ll wonder, When is the darned thing going to reach its rock-bottom price??

Crystal Paine put it best when she said, “Using coupons wisely requires strategy and patience” (The Money Saving Mom’s Budget).  We’ve covered strategy twice (here and here), so now let’s explore patience.

Good news:  You won’t be waiting for forever.  There is a light at the end of the tunnel.  You can actually know in advance when many items are going to be on sale. Be mindful of the month and the season.  They dictate the sales you will see and the coupons that manufacturers will release.  We call this a sales cycle.

Get ready to mark your calendar!

  • January
    • Christmas clearance foods and decorations
    • Diet foods and other aids (Kashi, Healthy Choice, Lean Cuisine, South Beach, etc.)
    • Exercise equipment
    • Organizational tools
    • Oatmeal
    • Goodies for Super Bowl Sunday (wings, party trays, soda, chips, etc.)
    • Seasonal produce
  • February
    • Valentine’s Day candy and decorations
    • Canned foods
    • Hot breakfast foods (pancakes, waffles, oatmeal, etc.)
    • Seasonal produce
  • March
    • St. Patrick’s Day foods and decorations (corned beef, cabbage, etc.)
    • Easter foods and decorations (ham, eggs, etc.)
    • Winter clearance (boots, scarves, gloves, coats, etc.)
    • Snacks for March Madness (wings, party trays, soda, chips, etc.)
    • Seasonal Produce
  • April
    • Easter food and decorations (ham, eggs, etc.)
    • Organic and “Green” food and non-food items (Earth Day is this month!)
    • Seasonal Produce
  • May
    • Mexican foods (chips, salsa, etc. Think Cinco De Mayo!)
    • Memorial Day items (paper plates, plastic utensils,charcoal, condiments, BBQ sauce, chips, dips, etc.)
    • Warm weather items (sunscreen, bug spray)
    • Seasonal Produce
  • June
    • Dairy products (milk, butter, cheese, ice cream, etc.)
    • Eggs
    • Fourth of July products ( charcoal, BBQ sauce, chips, dips, salad dressing, hot dogs, hamburgers, etc.)
    • Seasonal Produce
  • July
    • Fourth of July products ( charcoal, BBQ sauce, chips, dips, salad dressing, hot dogs, hamburgers, etc.)
    • Ice cream
    • School supplies (pencils, paper, crayons, glue, etc.  Back-to-School is right around the corner!)
    • Seasonal Produce
  • August
    • School supplies (pencils, paper, crayons, glue, etc.  Back-to-School is right around the corner!)
    • Warm weather clearance (sunscreen, bug spray, swim suits, camping gear, fans, gardening supplies, etc.)
    • Disinfectants
    • Seasonal Produce
  • September
    • School supplies
    • Labor Day promos (movies, restaurants, apparel, shoes, etc.)
    • Warm weather clearance items
    • Diabetes supplies (test strips, meters, scales, vitamins, sugar-free foods)
    • Seasonal Produce
  • October
    • Halloween supplies (candy, costumes, decorations, etc.)
    • Pink products for Breast Cancer awareness
    • Dog products (food, toys, equipment, etc.)
    • Seafood
    • Baking supplies (pie crusts, chocolate chips, evaporated milk, pumpkin, etc.)
    • Seasonal Produce
  • November
    • Halloween clearance (candy, costumes, etc.)
    • Black Friday sales (electronics, apparel, toys, jewelry, and everything in between)
    • Holiday foods (turkey, pumpkin, cranberry, rolls, boxed potatoes, etc.)
    • Baking supplies (marshmallows, nuts, Chex, chocolate chips, cake and brownie mix, etc.)
    • Canned foods (soups, broths, spaghetti sauce, fruits & veggies, etc.)
    • Seasonal Produce
  • December
    • Thanksgiving decorations on clearance
    • Baking supplies (marshmallows, nuts, Chex, chocolate chips, cake and brownie mix, etc.)
    • Canned foods (soups, broths, spaghetti sauce, fruits & veggies, etc.)
    • Holiday foods (egg nog, gravy, rolls, frozen pies, etc.)
    • Seasonal Produce

Diet food and exercise equipment in January, when people are still trying to stick to their New Year’s resolutions to lose weight.  Barbecue supplies and sunscreen during summer; soup and cold medicine during winter.  No brainers, right?

But what about your favorite body wash?  Your preferred laundry detergent?  When will those be on sale??  I can’t tell you exactly when, but I’m confident it will be soon.  I say this because once an item is on sale, you can typically expect to wait another three to four months to see the price drop again.

That three-to-four-month period of time is also called a sales cycle.  And it is the reason you don’t have to feel like (or actually become) a hoarder.   When you find an item at stock-up price, you need only purchase three to six months’ worth –  basically, just enough to hold you over until the next sale.

So no need to clear the shelves the next time you find a great deal.  That item will be on sale again in a few months.  (And now you are able to make an educated guess as to when that will be!)

Any questions?  Let me know in the comments section.  We’ll pick this coupon talk up again tomorrow.  Happy Friday!

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s