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September Savings Start With Big Labor Day Sales

Get great deals on furniture, luggage, smartphones and more

spinner image A woman selects a bright orange suitcase from the luggage aisle of a store.
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September marks the unofficial end of summer, with kids back in school, football back on TV and the return of all things pumpkin spice. The month also features several retail events with opportunities for savvy shoppers to save and deals that are often the lowest they’ll be until Black Friday, which is Nov. 24 this year.

With Halloween products already hitting the shelves, retailers are especially looking to move out any items associated with summer.

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“It can feel a little odd to buy summery things because you might not use them until next year, but this is the best time for those purchases, because retailers and brands are really trying to clear out inventory,” says Kimberly Palmer, a personal finance expert at NerdWallet. “It all peaks around Labor Day weekend [Sept. 2-4 this year], which is one of the big three-day weekends of the year where you see sale prices that aren’t even product specific but storewide discounts.”

In addition to clearance sales on all summer-related items, you’ll find deals this month on large home purchases, cellphones and baby products. Here’s a look at some of the deals you’ll find in those categories this month:

Big-ticket home purchases

Like Memorial Day and Presidents’ Day, Labor Day weekend has become one of those long weekends that retailers rely on to boost sales of large home goods like mattresses, appliances and furniture. You’ll see the biggest sales on larger outdoor items, like grills and patio furniture.

If you’re looking at mattresses, expect to see deals like “a king for the price of a queen” or “a full for the price of a twin.”

Julie Ramhold, a consumer analyst with DealNews, a comparison-shopping website, says that retailers may extend their promotions beyond the three-day weekend in a bid to nab more sales.

“The sales might start Wednesday or Thursday night and run through Tuesday,” she says. “They might say the sale is ending on Monday, but then extend it to Tuesday.”

Where to look for deals: Serta, (formerly Overstock), Home Depot

Potential savings: 20 percent to 50 percent off


With the end of summer travel season upon us and a few months before winter and holiday travel heats up, demand for luggage tends to slip during the fall season.

“You’ll see a lot of deals on luggage during the Labor Day sales, as travel begins to slow in the shoulder season,” says Kristin McGrath, a savings expert with RetailMeNot.

Expect to see bigger discounts for buying sets that include multiple pieces, such as a large suitcase with a matching carry on.

Where to look for deals: Costco, Macy’s, Away

Potential savings: 20 percent to 35 percent off


Apple typically holds a high-profile event in September to unveil the newest version of the iPhone. After that announcement, the price of the current and previous models tends to fall, even before the new generation hits stores.

“The announcement of the phone has a chain effect. You can go into a store and find $50 or $100 off the current model, and $200 or $300 off the two-year-old version,” says Brad Godwin, senior vice president and head of revenue at Shopkick, a shopping rewards app.

Where to look for deals: Best Buy, Verizon, AT&T

Potential savings: 10 percent to 15 percent off

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Baby items

The number of babies born in the United States tends to spike in late summer, pushing up demand for such items and prompting many retailers to offer additional discounts this time of year on baby clothes and toys as well as supplies like car seats, strollers or diaper pails. If you have a new baby or grandchild in your life (or are expecting one soon), September is a great opportunity to find deals on gifts for them, says Andrea Woroch, a money consultant.

You may also find discounts on supermarket baby products like diapers or formula, and you can increase your savings by checking for coupons in advance of a purchase.

Where to look for deals: Kohl’s, Target, Amazon

Potential savings: 20 percent to 40 percent off

Beauty products

While beauty products might not be top of mind when considering seasonal items, retailers switch out makeup color palettes this time of year and switch from promoting skin care products aimed at protecting skin from the summer sun to those made to replenish dry winter skin.

Where to look for deals: CVS, Sephora, Bluemercury

Potential savings: 20 percent to 30 percent

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