While you may be busy this month enjoying the long-awaited spring weather, you might also want to make time to purchase some items that are selling at a discount this time of year.
It’s a good time to pick up a new vacuum, for example, to help out with your spring cleaning, or to purchase a new digital camera to capture memories on spring break. According to Consumer Reports, there are several other great products on sale in March as well.
Consumer Reports’ market analysts track prices year-round, so CR can tell you when products are on deep discount, month by month. Here are some of the products on deep discount in March, according to CR's calendar of deals.
First, you’ll need to determine the type of vacuum you need, based on how you clean. Upright models with a bag work best for homes with wall-to-wall carpet or a lot of rugs, and canisters perform better on hard surfaces, such as wood or tile. Test out the vacuum before you purchase it. Make sure you’re comfortable with the weight and the ease with which you can push, pull, turn, and lift the vacuum.
Finally, consider the size of the vacuum vis-à-vis the storage space that you have available. If you have limited space but prefer an upright model, you’ll want to go with a slimmer model or a stick vacuum, assuming you don’t have too much carpet.
Digital camera discounts
Snag a deal on last year’s digital camera this month as new models start hitting the shelves. Once you’ve settled on your budget (cameras can range from a hundred to thousands of dollars) and the type of camera you want, think about the size and weight that make sense for you.
Look for a camera with the largest possible sensor, which will offer better performance in low light. Because buying a digital camera can be confusing, spend some time doing research before you shop. CR's digital camera buying guide and ratings give you the details on different models as well as information on features and brands.
In addition to looking at the purchase price of a room air purifier, you’ll want to factor in its operating costs. You could spend $150 to $200 per year on filter replacement and electricity costs.
To reduce these costs, seek out energy-efficient models (check for Energy Star certification) and washable filters. Choosing a large unit and running it at a lower speed will keep noise down when the air purifier is in use, and it will allow you to use a higher speed to clean out a large room quickly should the need arise. Keep in mind that while air purifiers can remove airborne particles, you’ll still need a vacuum to get the dust and pet dander that has settled into the carpet.
A leak is an obvious sign that you may need to repair or improve a roof, but cracked, curled, or missing shingles might signal that it’s time as well. Rather than climbing atop your home yourself, get an assessment from a professional contractor, who has the necessary training and gear to do so safely.
Expect to pay $100 per 100 square feet of roofing, and $3,500 to $10,000 for labor. Save your receipts and invoices, and look for a warranty that includes full reimbursement for materials and installation over 10 years for asphalt shingles or 50 years for fake slate.
You’ll find more information in CR's roofing buying guide.
As temperatures go up outside, the price of space heaters goes down, making March a great time to grab a good deal. Look for a model that oscillates and includes a fan, which will help distribute heat more quickly. It’s also important to buy a space heater that has safety features that prevent the risk of fire, such as a sensor that will turn it off if it overheats or falls over.
One note: If you’re buying a space heater to reduce your energy bills, you’ll need to turn down the heat in every other room in your house, because electricity is the most expensive way to heat a home.