What to buy in April

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If you have a tax refund burning a hole in your pocket this month, you’ll have many opportunities to spend it, but be sure to choose your purchases wisely. April shopping trends point to discounts on items ranging from travel to home goods, but there are also a few categories you will want to avoid.

Brent Shelton, spokesman for FatWallet.com, says homeowners can get deep discounts on items for renewing and refreshing their homes.

Look for weekend sales this month on cleaning supplies and cleaning tools, vacuums, materials for DIY home repair and more. For outdoors, expect savings on fertilizer, spring plants, garden tools and hoses. While Shelton advises stocking up on grilling products such as charcoal, you may want to avoid the actual grill.

Deal trackers at  Offers.com say grills and patio furniture are part of the new spring inventory and retailers are happy to let consumers pay full price for now. The deep discounts will come later, in July and August.

Holidays help increase the deals in April. This week, you can score post-Easter sales on candy, gift baskets, and some toys. April is also a good month to shop early for Mother’s Day items. You’ll find better deals on jewelry and cookware in late April, than in May, Shelton says. Weddings, graduations and Mother’s Day are likely to push cookware deals into the 55 to 65 percent off range.

It’s not a holiday, but it has become tradition for some businesses to give Tax Day freebies. Restaurants in particular will offer deals and freebies midmonth on coffee, desserts and other treats.

If you’re itching to get out of town, consider booking an April cruise. Traveling during the shoulder season can save you as much as 80 percent, according to Offers.com experts. You will also begin to see savings on summer travel in April, Shelton says. Start booking summer trips, and if you’re in need of luggage, you will probably be able to find what you need at 30 to 50 percent off.

When it comes to apparel, look for discounts on running shoes of 70 percent off or more as retailers try to take advantage of shoppers’ renewed interest in getting outdoors. However, this logic does not apply to spring clothing. Sales may start to appear in April, but as always, deeper discounts will come in June, when retailers want to unload excess inventory.

You will definitely want to avoid mattress shopping in April, according to the deal spotters at Offers.com. Wait just a few weeks until Memorial Day, when mattresses will have some of the lowest prices of the year. For the same reason, they also suggest holding off on buying a new refrigerator. May is a better month to shop and get that appliance at a much lower price.

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