What to Buy and When?!

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December is one of the most expensive times of the year for many people, and when it has passed hopefully you received loads of money from relatives!! Why not think ahead in 2013 and buy at the right time for the following year?
I think you could save 100′s of pounds simply by planning ahead and buying at the right time. So by having a look at sales throughout 2012 and previous years I give you some tips of what products are at their lowest prices and when.

January
This is usually a time when we are all a little low on cash, and if I have been lucky enough to come out of the December holiday period with a little cash I tend to buy those gifts I actually wanted in the January sales! But Now is the time to think of others for the following Christmas.

1) Buy for next Christmas, not the main gifts but the things that you drain the bank balance in November/December like Christmas Cards, wrapping paper and Christmas decorations etc. Look for large discounts on these items 50-70%

2) New white goods products get released in January, so look out for last years models with decent discount

3) Table wear is discounted this time of year as well, so grab a bargain on everything from table covers to place mats and dining sets.

February
The month of love with Valentines on the 14th, this often drains the average persons spending power so look for the deals. Forget the Romantic meal and dozen red roses, take your partner shopping instead!

1) Fires and heaters for the home. Although it is still very much winter at this time many manufacturers will begin to run low on stocks or begin to turn their attentions to next Autumn and the newer products they will release. This is therefore a great time to upgrade your fireplace (but an extremely cold time to do so, hence the discounts!)

2) Sports equipment, specifically outdoor goods. During February it is too cold for many outdoor activities and the enthusiasm for many gym goers runs out (excuse the pun!). Many sport companies reduce prices and release new models ready for spring/summer sales. A great time to get a great deal.

March
The month for Mothers day (in the UK) can the weight of the wallet, so buy your mum something she would like (and that has a great sale price tag on it!)

1) How about some pots and pans? Get the set you always wanted and finally have a matching set! Great saving to be had home ware items this month.

2) People start planning holidays around this time of year, luggage should begin to drop in price ready for new releases.

3) Towards the end of the months winter sports equipment as well as Wellington boots should be much more affordable, so get what you need for next winter now.

April
In the UK we spend at Easter time, not only on chocolates but toys and gifts too. Buy during this month and put the items away for the colder months. Many ‘last season’ items will be reduced, here are some to look out for:

1) New fabrics, if you can sow, or know someone who can, get great deals as new fabric lines are introduced. If you need new curtains, cushion covers or a new suite?!? Now is the time to buy.

2) Any winter goods that remain in shops should be up for a decent discount to make way for the spring/summer goods. If there is something you like that is a winter product and it isn’t discounted point this fact out and ask for a discount. It might seem cheeky but maybe the product has been overlooked and the shop may welcome getting rid of this old stock. Trust me once you get used to asking for a discount you’ll be looking for the opportunity and doing it everywhere you can ;)

3) If your a lady then seek out the winter tights, these will cost a small fortune in the winter and styles never change that much but the price does in April

May
Mid Spring in the UK, a great time to be a gardener, so don’t expect gardening products to be cheap, there will be multi buy savings but we recommend updating the following:

1) Need or want a new TV? Many manufacturers of televisions bring out new models in May/June. This is to encourage men (generally) to watch summer sport in the best quality through a TV as is possible! So watch for the older stock reductions. Remember it still is a new TV it’s just a dated design in the manufacturers eyes, the likely-hood is that the new design TV is exactly the same with a different fascia or front to it.

2) May is also a good time to get a great deal on tyres, not too sure why?! Maybe we start to travel more as the weather warms up or new tyre designs appear? Anyway buy them now if you can :)

June
June is when we show our love to our Dads with fathers day, however most dads don’t help us with gifts as they don’t want anything. Shops tend to make that decision for us and Dads and have great deals on Dad related stuff. So unlike many other months June is a month where you should hold out to last minute and buy what you need just before needing it

1) Shirt and tie sets usually drop in price the closer to fathers day you get, if you want to buy for the next fathers day then do it the day after!

2) Hand tools and powers tools usually drop in price this month too.

3) Here’s something a little different, how about a rug or carpet? Some great bargains to be had here too.

July
It’s Summer time so now the time to buy winter things…….wrong!

1) Swimming shorts, trunks, suits and costumes all can be found marked down during this month. Not only due to new designs but shops like to make sure there stocks are depleted by the end of the summer.

2) Men’s shoes. Guys tend to slip on flip flops or sandals. People spend time and money on holidays and the shoe market feels the pain. You can help and get some great shoes too :)

3) CD/DVD/Blue-Rays MP3players all drop in price. Some great gifts for the home or for next Christmas can be had now!

August
Most people have holiday plans or trips to look forward to during this month. The kids are off from school, we barbecue more, eat more and consume alcohol (quite a lot if there’s a big sporting event on!) So here’s where to save a bit:

1) Make Up and cosmetics see reductions in price so buy your years supply now

2) Many car companies have excellent deals on a new car, some deals include insurance, servicing and even a fuel allowance and can work out extremely reasonable as long as you keep within the car usage guidelines.

3) Plan next years garden now, spring and summer bulbs, seeds and evens trees/shrubs may be reduced so think ahead

September
Back to school signs appear and the Summer draws to a close so what is good to buy now?

1) School uniforms is something you’ll have to buy now and you can’t guess their sizes for next year, but in recent years not been too costly. Still buy what you think your kids will actually need throughout the year now even if it means getting a size bigger for the second half of the year.

2) Stationary is extremely cheap now too, so whether it’s for your personal needs or work bulk buy a years supply and save a small fortune.

3) Gardening discount for BBQs, garden buildings and plants all reduce in price in September. Be shrewd and buy now.

October
With Halloween, Bonfire Night and Christmas all coming close together we all spend a little less in October thinking of the events ahead.

1) As we tend to socialise less to save money sales in jeans plummets, get the top branded pair of jeans at a fraction of the price in October. These should last you years so well worth buying when cheaper.

2) The weekend before Halloween sees some pre-’Black Friday’ sales on line. Savings of up to 30 percent may be found on all manner of products so get surfing for Christmas gifts that will arrive in plenty of time cutting your stress levels before the big day!

November
Where has the year gone? Once Bonfire night on November the 5th passes we all start to think of Christmas (whether we want to or not), as shops and adverts start to push the event.

1) Halloween has been and gone and shop owners want rid of the stock so help them at the right price and store away for next year

2) Women’s shoes get a discount this month so get those shoes for the office party now

3) Bed clothes and towels/linen get well discounted this month. It’s always nice to sink into new bedding on Christmas eve so buy it at the right price

December
Everyone tries to get ready for Christmas and please friends, family, work colleagues etc. Goodwill goes out the window with long queues and rush to get the must have gifts for the little ones etc So keep the holiday season vibe with these savings on:

1) Children’s clothes, these become much more affordable in many stores being overlooked for toys and other essentials. Buy the kids you know some new threads for the big day!

2) Go for a posh meal, the sort of establishments that won’t hold Christmas functions. They feel the effects of other eateries having Christmas functions and will reduce their prises to compete!

3) Promote your business in the paper, advertising space is discounted in December.

4) Feel like a challenge? Why not book a team building event for the next year or sign up to an individual event? These will have early booking discounts and are a great way to keep motivated to keep fir well into the new year!

Although these are just suggestions from what I have experienced during the past year they could well save you a small fortune. I have actually practised what I preach with respect to this and I would advise making an accessible list of what you have bought and when and who it is for. This year I bought Christmas cards in November and when I got the Christmas decoration from the loft in December I discovered the Better quality cards I had bought in January which I had 70% reduction in price.
I know not everyone is going to pre plan after reading this but please I implore you to try to get into the habit of asking for discount, particularly on bulk buying. Many companies will make extra money on delivering more than one product to an address (one shipping cost that they incorporate into all of their items) so ask for a discount. An example of this is I bought a TV, TV Stand and Cooker and each item already had the delivery price built into it so as they were all being sent to the same address I asked for a discount and they obliged. This also works on high cost items that you know you are only paying for the brand. An example of this are top branded trainers or sports equipment. You will find that if you buy 1 pair of trainers at full price a second identical pair will be discounted for you, how much discount depends on your bargaining skills and luck on the day.
The more you get used to asking for discount the easier it becomes, don’t demand a discount but also don’t ask expecting to be refused. If the sales person thinks they will get a big sale by giving you a discount you’ll get one, if they think you’ll buy anyway you won’t! Also don’t be upset if you get refused a discount, if it is something you wanted anyway then it was worth a try, the sales person may be playing hard ball so try another shop/store or try another sales representative on a different day. You have to weigh up if it is worth the hassle for a little discount but personally I love the bargaining game and try it everywhere and anywhere I can. Go on give it a go you will get some discount, all you have to do is ask.

Bunk Beds

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Now here’s the deal, I have two kids and I am lucky enough to have a 3 bedroom house. Like many homes we have 2 large bedrooms and one smaller (box) room, so the kids could have their own room but the box room houses the combi boiler and realistically isn’t big enough once your child is out of a cot. So luckily I got a computer/treadmill room and the kids got to share. At first this was no problem, my wife bought bunk beds that separated and we allowed the kids to have single bed each. The beds seemed massive with our little ones asleep in them, but alas children soon grow and the amount of necessities/toy/teddies/crap they accumulate is unbelievable as I’m sure any parent can testify!
When the eldest child reached 6 years of age (recommend age use by most bunk bed manufacturers) we put the bunk beds together, it absolutely amazed me how much amazement the kids found at this task! Once completed the kids couldn’t wait to get on them. We explained to the younger child (4 years old) that she was not allowed to go on the top bunk as she wasn’t old enough, which didn’t go down to well, but I showed them how easy it was to make the bottom bunk into a ‘den’ by tucking sheets under the top bunks mattress and the bottom bunk was also very ‘cool’.
We went to bed worried how they would get on and when we woke in the morning we could here the kids playing. To our surprise the little one was on the top bunk! But kids will be kids. Several months have passed and we can’t believe how the kids disappear upstairs to play in their room (now it has some floor space in it) and on their beds.
The bottom line is I would whole heartedly recommend getting bunk beds for your kids, the beds that separate are what we purchased and they give you the option to use the beds individually if required. We also bought the standard single size beds hoping that we could use them for years as the kids grow, however I have found a number of bunk beds on-line that have smaller dimensions in bed legth and width allowing the perfect fit for your child needs or rooms requirements.
If you only have one child they’re worth considering for the inevitable ‘sleep overs’ kids like to have, there are many styles and designs and I have even come across a double bed bottom bunk and single top, the Triple Bunk Bed. We love ours and hope you consider buying one.
Thanks for reading.

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