What to Buy in May

By Raechel Conover, Cheapism.com

As the warm weather moves in and schools let out for summer, May is the month to buy household goods and entertaining essentials. It's the perfect time for stocking up ahead of summer celebrations. Prepare for graduation parties and Memorial Day barbecues by finding deals to prep your food (cookware and BBQ supplies) and make your guests happy (party supplies).

Cookware and Small Appliances. Continuing on from April, cookware promotions are plentiful in May as retailers target college graduation and wedding season. For more discounts, keep an eye out for Mother's Day promotions -- cookware makes a great practical and welcome gift for mom. Give your college grad a set of new pots and pans for his or her first apartment, or shower newlyweds with cookware that will last for years.

Cookware is a great buy during the month of May!

Related: Best affordable cookware

Party and BBQ Supplies. Party supply stores gear up for summer when graduation parties, wedding events, pool parties, and casual weekend barbecues take towns by storm. Stock up for your next shindig, whether it's a luau or a bridal shower. If you like hosting casual backyard barbecues, May is the time to buy charcoal and grill tools, paper plates, condiments, napkins, plastic ware, and the like. Retailers see Memorial Day as the start of grilling season and offer coupons on these items throughout the month of May. Even if you're not planning any celebrations in May, fill the larder now for the rest of summer's picnics, barbeques, and dinner parties.

Camping/Hiking Gear. As the weather heats up so do sales on camping, hiking, and outdoor gear. This is the prime month to buy items you need to enjoy the outdoors all summer long. Look for coupons and sales, especially leading up to Memorial Day when many folks plan to take their first hiking or camping trip of the season.

Don't Buy Grills or Patio Furniture Yet. Although May is a good time to pick up grilling supplies, it's not the best time to buy a grill. As we mentioned in April (what to buy in April link), the best time to buy a grill is after July 4th, when retailers begin to look towards fall and start discounting grills. The same rule applies to patio furniture. You're better off waiting until summer begins winding down to snag a bargain on a grill or patio items.

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Mattresses. If you have an old, saggy, or lumpy mattress, May is the best time to buy a new mattress. This month take advantage of mattress deals as retailers try to clear inventory ahead of receiving new stock. Retailers also deeply discount mattresses for Memorial Day sales, so check the offerings during those events.

Mattresses are another good buy this month!

Spring Apparel. With spring on it's way out and summer blowing in, retailers are antsy to clear out spring apparel and display the new summer duds. May is the best month to scoop up spring apparel for cheap, especially if you can wait until the Memorial Day sales.

Office Furniture. Looking to update your home office or fill the shelves with office supplies? May is a good month to do so. Sales and coupons for these items will be heating up and staying hot through June.

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Don't Buy Jewelry. If you haven't bought mom jewelry for Mother's Day, don't try to now. Last month saw much better jewelry deals, but this month prices are back up due to the impending holiday. If you missed the jewelry deals it's probably time for plan B -- cookware or small appliances also make excellent Mother's Day gifts and are deeply discounted this month.

Foods in Season. For your Memorial Day barbecue, stock up on the foods in season in May. This month vegetables at their peak include asparagus, spring onions, peas, and rhubarb; summer veggies like okra and zucchini also begin to appear at market. Fruits in season in May include cherries, apricots, blueberries, and strawberries.

More from Cheapism:

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How to score bargains at the thrift shop

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