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Ready or not, it’s almost time to pack up our flip-flops for the winter and dust off our fall boots. Before you do that, take advantage of these summer sales and clearance hacks to help you stock up for next summer.

I’m not gonna lie — I’m sad about summer being almost over. But every year, I comfort myself by setting Deal Alerts inside the KCL app and stocking up on summer clearance for next year. Opening up those bins in June is like Christmas all over again, when I finally get to use all the stuff I bought for nearly 80% off.

There’s a strategy to finding all these summer sales, and I’m about to spill all my secrets.

 

1. Shop Lowe’s Summer Clearance event for 50 – 80% savings on patio furniture and grills.
Shop Lowe's Summer Clearance Event for 50-80% savings on patio furniture and grills.

You can’t miss Lowe’s Summer Clearance event if you want to update or furnish your patio.

The sale usually runs from about mid-August to mid-September and in 2020, we saw a deal for outdoor dining tables for $24.12 (reg. $79.12) and stackable resin Adirondack chairs for $2.98 (reg. $9.98).

Watch for charcoal grills to reach as low as $24.50 (reg. $49). Plus you’ll see flower pots, tabletop tiki torches, and more — all for 50 – 80% off.

 

2. Pretend it’s already fall and shop Hobby Lobby’s Christmas Clearance.

Pretend it's already fall and shop Hobby Lobby's Christmas Clearance.

Yes, you’re probably still wearing shorts and sipping iced tea on your patio or by the pool.

But if you want the best selection of Hobby Lobby’s Christmas items, you gotta get your autumn on.

Shop at the beginning of September when everything Christmas is marked down 40% or more.

Sure, you can get a better deal the longer you wait, since Hobby Lobby will continue to mark down Christmas items until December 25 — if you’re not picky, that’s a good approach.

But, if you want specific items, go ahead and buy at 40% off, because once they stock their shelves with Christmas decor, they don’t reorder. When it’s gone, it’s gone.

 

3. Stock up on shorts or jeans for your teen (or yourself!) at American Eagle.

Stock up on shorts or jeans for your teen (or yourself!) at American Eagle Outfitters.

Finding clothing clearance is a total score, because you can use items all year long or save them for next season.

As a general rule of thumb, you’ll want to buy American Eagle jeans when they reach about $19.99 (reg. $59.95) and shorts when they reach about $14.99 (reg. $49.95).

If you shop at the end of August, you’ll get both of these prices.

 

4. Look for up to 50% off camping gear — like tents — at DICK’S Sporting Goods.

Look for up to 50% off camping gear — like tents — at DICK'S Sporting Goods.

In 2020, I saw eight-person dome tents on clearance at Dick’s for $89.99 (reg. $199.99) when paired with a coupon like $10 off a $50 purchase.

In fact, this is cheaper than buying Walmart’s Ozark brand tent, which is normally priced at $190.

 

5. Shop Nordstrom Rack for up to 70% savings during their Clear the Rack event.

Shop Nordstrom Rack's Clear the Rack Event for up to 70% savings.

When you combine Nordstrom Rack’s already low prices with an additional 25% off, you’ll be walking into a world where Michael Kors wallets are suddenly $50.50 (reg. $168) and Steve Madden sandals are $23.70 (reg. $53).

Not to mention you can find Nike runners for just shy of 50% off — $44.93 a pair.

It’s worth taking time to paw through the racks to find clothing clearance for yourself or your kids.

 

6. Watch for a Gap sale online in late August and stock up on under-$4 T-shirts.

Watch for a Gap online sale in late August and stock up on under-$4.00 T-shirts.

In 2020, I saw a deal at Gap for select women’s T-shirts for $3.23 (reg. $24.95) and men’s T-shirts for $5.39 (reg. $29.95) — that’s a $21.72 – $24.56 savings.

These sales are normally online only and around 40% off clearance clothing sales. On top of those savings, you could also use a promo code for an extra 10% off.

Plus, if you’re a member of Gap’s loyalty program, Good Rewards, it’ll help you earn 2% cash back on every purchase you make. That means you can save even more money at Gap.

 

7. Use BrickSeek to see if another store has more clearance inventory than the one you’re at.

Use BrickSeek to see if another store has more clearance inventory than the one you're at.

When you’re shopping at Walmart or Target and you find a killer deal but there’s just not enough of what you need, check BrickSeek.com to see if another store in your city has more.

Just enter the UPC code, and if you find more inventory, call the store (or ask an associate to do it for you) and put the items on hold while you run across town.

 

8. Build a stash of pants from The Children’s Place (size up!) for when the kids outgrow their pants around February.

Build a stash of pants from The Children's Place (size up!) for when the kids outgrow their pants around February.

Shop The Children’s Place mid-August and you’ll be rewarded with $7 jeans and $5 uniform polos.

Buy what you need for school in the fall (and next summer, of course), but consider buying bigger sizes even for fall so you have pants on hand when your son grows three inches overnight.

Or, buy multiples for the little girl who tears holes in the knees of her jeans faster than she outgrows them.

 

9. Shop DICK’S Sporting Goods mid-August for 40% off your next The North Face jacket.

Shop DICK'S Sporting Goods mid-August for 40% off The North Face jackets.

Expect The North Face sweatshirts and fleece jackets to get a markdown around mid-August, and buy when they reach 40% off.

This is a legit discount on a brand like The North Face — which doesn’t see many sale racks and often is listed as a brand you can’t use a coupon to buy.

 

10. Stock up on office supplies during Target’s 90% off back-to-school clearance sale.

Stock up on office supplies during Target's 90% off back-to-school clearance sale.

Target’s summer clearance prices start at 50% off for the first few days and then dip to 70% off, and finally, they’ll hit 90% off about a week or two after they first hit 50% off.

The rule of thumb is to buy anything you cannot live without when it reaches 50% off because items go quickly.

But if you have an open mind, you can find some treasures during the 90% off markdown. Plus, it’s not impossible to find supplies like paper, glue, and pencils — I’ve done it before.

 

11. Check out Labor Day Sales for extra savings on top of clearance prices.

Shop Labor Day Sales for extra savings on top of clearance prices.

In 2021, Labor Day weekend is September 4 – 6. Keep your eyes peeled for extra-percent off clearance sales anywhere you plan to shop. It’s a thing.

  • Express — In 2020, we saw everything an extra 40% off. Sweaters and jackets formally $35.99 were on sale for $11.99.
  • Justice — They offered an extra 50% off clearance in 2020. I saw $1.50 tank tops! Save them for next summer.
  • Eddie Bauer — I also saw an extra 50% off clearance sale in 2020, where I found men’s Henley T-shirts for $9.99.
  • Best Buy — Was offering $100 off an iPad Mini in 2020.

 

12. Sign up for a free loyalty program before you go clearance hunting.

Sign up for free loyalty programs before you go clearance hunting.

Stores like Dick’s Sporting Goods offer a free loyalty program called ScoreCard where you can earn 3% of what you spend back in the form of store rewards, similar to store cash.

If you know you’re making a big purchase or two — maybe buying camping or sports gear for next season — try to do it all at their store in order to reap all the loyalty points.

Another example of why loyalty programs rock is that when you sign up for American Eagle and Aeri’s loyalty program, Real Rewards, you’ll get the chance to earn a free pair of jeans for every five pairs you buy.

Or earn and spend Place Bucks at The Children’s Place to get even deeper savings on clearance prices.

 

13. Stock up on outdoor supply hardware — like mulch and charcoal briquettes at The Home Depot.

Stock up on outdoor supplies — like mulch and charcoal briquettes at Home Depot.

Toward the end of August, I usually see stores like Home Depot and Lowe’s trying to offload their garden and outdoor inventory in order to make room for holiday items.

This is the time to stock up on anything you might need for your yard next spring.

Watch for bags of mulch to reach $2 each (reg. $3.33) and charcoal briquettes to get as low as 50% off.

 

14. Get the best summer clearance deals at Target using the Amazon app.

Use the Amazon app to make sure you're getting the best summer clearance deal at Target.

Since you’re bound to see other Target summer clearance deals when you’re shopping Target’s back-to-school clearance sale, download the Amazon app from Google Play or the App Store.

Scan barcodes inside Target to compare with Amazon’s prices, and confirm that the item at Target is actually cheaper than it is on Amazon.

If you find a better price on an identical item on Amazon, show it to a Target customer service associate and they’ll match Amazon’s price.

Did we miss anything? Let us know in the comments below. Thanks for reading!

 

14 Summer Clearance Hacks That'll Save You Hundreds