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Best Consumer Buys in July 2018

What to buy — and what to wait on

Sale tag hanging with American flag in the background

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Take advantage of summer sales and free events during the month of July. 

The Fourth of July has long been hailed as one of the best days to score deals. Over the years, those deals have spread throughout the month, making July an excellent time to save. Whether you are looking for fun things to do or putting together a new wardrobe, July is the time to steal the deals.

Reciprocal Museum Programs

This tip falls into my “Biggest Bang for Your Buck” category and July is the perfect time to take advantage of this deal. Buy an annual membership to one museum, zoo or learning center and get free or low-cost admission to hundreds of others through the North American Reciprocal Museum Association. Additionally, you will receive other member perks such as gift shop discounts and admission to special events.

Annual family memberships cost on average around $100 for two adults and two children, but each facility is different. By making your purchase in July, you will have plenty to do with the family over the summer months and beyond.

Free Summer Concerts

I am always amazed at the quality of music offered at local summer concert days. Check with your local parks and recreation department or chamber of commerce to get a list of upcoming free concerts.

And before you buy a ticket to any concerts, see if your credit card company is offering VIP perks such as preferred seating. Some credit card reward programs will allow you to use points to buy your tickets.

If you prefer to stay indoors, AARP members pay $9.50 for Regal ePremiere movie tickets purchased online (conditions apply). Tickets are valid at all Regal Entertainment Group locations nationwide for all movies and showtimes.


July is a great time to buy swimwear because we’re halfway through the season of swimming. Macy's, for example, is offering 15 percent off many swimwear items. Plus, stores need to begin clearing out summer clothes to make room for back-to-school. Walmart and Target both have large selections for women and men. Oftentimes Macy’s will offer an additional savings coupon to add to the already discounted price. Through July 8, you can earn an extra 20, 15 or 10 percent off on select merchandise online. Use promo code FOURTH. In addition, Kohl's has many swimwear items on sale for less than $20. Patio furniture, too, has been marked down.


July and August are peak sun season, which means it’s time to stock up on sunscreen. You will find hot deals on a range of sunscreen products and self-tanners. Discounts on sunscreen will continue throughout August. Look for sunscreens that protect against both UVA and UVB radiation.

CVS has posted sunscreens that are FSA eligible as well as offering a Buy One, Get One for 50 percent off. Look for coupons on sunscreen. I have seen some for several dollars off when you buy two.


July is an excellent time to buy refrigerators. Sears is just one major department store offering Fourth of July sales with deep discounts, including 10 percent off online purchases. Just use the code FIREWORK. And Sears also is offering 40 percent off on appliances.

In addition to sales, there are other ways you can save money. Ask if the store is selling any “open box” items. These are items that have been returned or may have a minor scratch or dent. Stores also will sell off their floor models at a deep discount. Make sure they offer a full warranty. Be sure to look for Energy Star models so you can also save on your future energy bills.


And finally, if you have a leaky roof now is the time to make those repairs. The materials used for roof repair and siding for your home will be on sale throughout July. Lowe's is offering 20 percent off on shingles in addition to other sale prices.

Jeanette Pavini is the savings expert for

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