While July 4th sales are long gone, fear not: This is the official midpoint of summer, which brings with it the promise of several deals.

Many stores have started to discount summer items. Here are the best things to buy right now and what should you probably wait on:


Do: While the weather’s about at its peak of heat, many stores are already figuring that most people have picked up their bathing suits, sandals and summer clothes for the season. You can find great deals on leather sandals and board shorts for older teens at Kohl’s. Prices looked pretty good for most summer clothing for the family, in fact.

Don’t: At the pricier stores, hold out a few more weeks if you have your eye on shorts, sundresses and other summer clothing. Sure, you may only get a couple of months of wear out of them, but you can stock up for next year. In other words, wait until they’re desperate to get rid of their stock at the tail end of summer.


Do: Consumer Reports suggests taking advantage of this month to tackle some outdoor improvements, and even interior paint jobs. Sales this time of year will make that a good bet. Look to Lowe’s or Home Depot for savings on paint, stains and gardening tools this month.

Don’t: Eyeing that piece de resistance for the backyard? Hold off — gas grills and such are much more likely to be deeply discounted in August.


Do: Sales are incredible on back-to-school merchandise right now. Those sales will continue through August, but try to be first in line for this annual buying frenzy. Remember to stock up for the home office with tape, sticky notes and more while you’re snatching up bargains for the kids. Our go-to spots include Target, Wal-Mart, Office Depot, Office Max and Walgreens.

Don’t: Wait until late August for the big shopping trip. You might find deals at the start of the month, but the longer you put it off, the more stress you’ll endure.


Do: Because stores are making room for new products after the annual furniture shows, you’ll be in luck if you’re shopping for anything for the home. If you’ve been putting it off, it’s time to find a dream sofa or a coffee table. Better yet, stores are starting to clear out their stock of outdoor furniture, so you’ll likely find some deals there, as well. Macy’s is a good place to go to replace worn-out indoor furniture. Lowe’s has solid and stylish outdoor pieces.