January Is the Worst Month To Buy These 13 Things

Find out which purchases you should avoid at the beginning of the year.

in the mall with shopping bags
Updated May 28, 2024
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The new year is right around the corner, and that means you might be gearing up to find good deals in January that can help you keep more money in your wallet when shopping.

January offers many great bargains, but there are some things you should not buy in the first month of the year if you want to pay the best price.

Here are 13 things you should avoid buying in January.

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Krakenimages.com/Adobe woman smiling confident using camera

Many people use the camera on their smartphone to snap photos. But if you’re serious about photography, you might want to invest in a dedicated camera.

Consumer Reports says February — not January — is one of the best months to buy a camera if you want a deal. So, if you want to save money shopping, wait one more month before making this purchase.

Vacuum and carpet cleaner

New Africa/Adobe man using vacuum cleaner

A good vacuum and carpet cleaner can keep your carpets clean and remove allergens from your home.

If you need to replace your vacuum or carpet cleaner, January might not be the ideal time. Prices start to drop in March when people schedule their spring cleaning.

Spring clothing

NDABCREATIVITY/Adobe woman buying new clothes

Yes, some stores start stocking spring clothes as early as January. However, you'll likely pay full price at this time, and you won’t see any discounts for a few months.

Usually, spring clothes start to go on sale in April or May, so it’s best to hold out until then.

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New Africa/Adobe man using blender to cook

Blenders are an essential device for any kitchen. They’re excellent for making smoothies, frozen cocktails, sauces, and even bread.

However, you may want to avoid buying a blender in January. You’ll probably see the best blender deals around July — when Amazon’s Prime Day inspires sales — and over the holidays.


Petro/Adobe bed with orthopedic pillow

Buying a quality mattress is important. And since this is a relatively expensive purchase, you want to find the best deals so you get more bang for your buck.

While stores often offer decent sales on mattresses around Martin Luther King Jr. Day, expect even better prices on Memorial Day, Presidents Day, and Independence Day.

Major appliances

corepics/Adobe couple choosing washing machine

Buying large appliances in January — such as stoves, dishwashers, and refrigerators — might not be your best bet. There are often better deals around Presidents Day and Memorial Day.

With Presidents Day right around the corner in February, it might be worth putting off these purchases for a little while. However, in January, you may find some decent sales on small kitchen appliances — such as food processors or hand mixers.

Winter gear and tools

Nicolas St-Germain/Adobe man using snowblower

January and February usually mark the worst time for the snow and cold. Retailers know this is when many people seek out snowblowers, shovels, skis, and more, so they tend to price them a bit higher at the beginning of the year.

Try to wait until March to buy these items to hit the end-of-the-season sales. As demand for these products decreases, the prices tend to dip.


didiksaputra/Adobe organized travel store

Many people travel in winter to visit family for the holidays or to escape cold weather. Once holiday sales are over, luggage tends to be more expensive in January.

Buying luggage during other periods — such as March, April, August, and September — might be a better bet. You can also find a lot of sales during holidays such as Memorial Day and around Black Friday and Cyber Monday.


Korta/Adobe woman buying a laptop in store

If you're looking for a new laptop for school or work, wait until later in the year.

While January can offer some good deals on laptops, Black Friday and the back-to-school months are usually when you find the best prices.

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Out-of-season produce

AIPERA/Adobe women shopping in the supermarket

Out-of-season produce is often more costly. Not only can it inflate your grocery bill, but off-season fruits and veggies may be less nutrient-dense than those harvested in-season.

During January, avoid summer produce, such as berries, zucchini, and watermelon. Instead, try to buy what's in season, such as citrus fruits, root vegetables, brussels sprouts, and apples.


Nomad_Soul/Adobe couple choosing sofa for home

When the weather turns cold, people generally spend more time inside. Because of this, you may want to update some of your home decor and furniture.

However, furniture stores tend to hold their best sales during Presidents Day, so waiting one more month could save you quite a few bucks.

Video games

Miljan Živković/Adobe siblings playing video game console

If you or someone close to you is an avid gamer, you might want to know when to score the lowest prices.

Unfortunately, that time is not in January. If you’re looking for the best deals, you’ll likely find them during Black Friday or Amazon Prime Day.

Air purifier

220 Selfmade studio/Adobe air purifier in cozy white bedroom

An air purifier can help those with allergies or asthma or even folks worried about wildfire smoke. However, January might not be the optimal time to buy.

When spring rolls around and people throw open the windows, prices on air purifiers often drop. You also might find good deals in September.

Bottom line

Jelena/Adobe man at the shopping

There are some items you should avoid buying in January. Items such as electronics, mattresses, and winter gear might be cheaper later in the year.

Knowing the best time to shop for specific things can be an effective strategy to build up your savings so you can put away more cash or other goals.

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Author Details

Carley Clark

Carley Clark is a personal finance writer from Michigan. She graduated from Spring Arbor University with a bachelor's degree in business. After graduation, she worked in finance as a revenue auditor at a casino. Carley strives to write informative content that will help readers meet their financial goals.