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What to buy in January, what to skip

Just because there is a sale price doesn't mean it's a good time to buy the item.

INDIANAPOLIS — January sales are here.

But just because there is a sale price doesn't mean it's a good time to buy the item.

Here are the categories worth considering, according to Offers.com:

  • Beauty gift sets: Stores sell holiday season gift sets and shortly after, need to offload them.
  • Bedding & sheets: Household linens – think sheets, blankets and towels – tend to go on sale in January. It stems from “White Sales” – the tradition of department stores marking down linens early in the year.
  • Fitness equipment, gym memberships: In addition to large machines, small items including ankle weights are on sale, too.
  • Winter apparel - Shopping over the three-day Martin Luther King Jr. Day long weekend will get you considerable markdowns on winter clothing at retailers like Kohl’s, Macy’s, and REI, as they begin making way for the pastel colors of the upcoming spring season.

As for what to avoid:

  • Mattresses and major appliances: Presidents’ Day, Memorial Day and the 4th of July will offer better sales on these items.
  • Jewelry: Wait until after Valentine’s Day when jewelers try to offload unpurchased Valentine’s Day stock.

How to save beyond the sale

To look up an item's price history, use the browser extension Honey. The settings allow you to look up to 120 days.

Cashback sites including Rakuten will also provide extra savings. After selecting the offer, the site will redirect to the retailer's site where you'll shop like normal. After the sale is complete, Rakuten will deposit the cash amount to your account.

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