The days are getting warmer and your grass is growing ever faster. If your lawn mower has seen better days, this is probably the time you think about replacing it. But would it be better to wait?
Here, we explore the factors to consider when deciding the best time to buy a lawn mower. Read on for all the information you’ll need to get the best deal.
How does buying time make a difference?
You might be wondering why you should consider this at all. After all, if you need a new lawn mower, why shouldn’t you just go out and buy one?
If your lawn is becoming a meadow before your eyes and you don’t already have a functioning mower, you’re right. The hard work it will take to deal with your overgrown grass at the end of the season isn’t worth it. Go out and buy your new mower right now!
But perhaps you have other options. Can you cope with using an existing mower for a little longer? Or perhaps you can borrow one from a friend or neighbor? If so, it’s worth being patient. Buy at the right time and you could benefit from big savings.
There are two main factors in finding the perfect time to buy your new mower. The first is hitting the discount sales. The second is benefitting from new product launches that mean existing mowers are no longer top-of-the-line.
So how do you manage to do that?
Target end-of-season sales
As with all products, retail prices tend to follow demand. So when everyone is after a new mower, you can expect prices to be sky-high. When mowing the grass is the last thing on most people’s minds, you’re more likely to pick up a bargain.
For most retailers, fall is the season for slashing lawn mower prices. People are more likely to be buying winter woollies than garden kit. And those mowers take up a lot of storage space that could be used for more marketable products.
For those of us in the northern hemisphere, early September is a good time to start looking. That’s the time retailers will be trying to shift their stock with tempting discounts.
There’s always a balance to strike here. Wait around and prices might be reduced again, but by then, your choice will be more limited.
A good option is to look for a retailer with a low-price guarantee. They’ll refund the difference if you find their product cheaper elsewhere within a certain period, say 30 days. Check terms and conditions though, as there may be restrictions on how it works.
Look for holiday bargains
While the end of the growing season is a reliable indicator of discount sales, it’s not the only one. Public holidays in the summer months mean time spent in the garden – and healthy sales of gardening goods.
Retailers keen to get a slice of the action will often hold discount sales to give them a competitive edge. Father’s Day is a particular favorite, with plenty of dads getting excited at the prospect of some garden tech. In the US, Labor Day is another red-letter date to watch out for.
As with end-of-season sales, finding a retailer with a low-price guarantee is a good step. And check out the terms of the warranty so you’re not stuck with a dud if things go wrong. A low price isn’t a bargain if the mower doesn’t work properly!
Benefit from innovation
Manufacturers are constantly looking for ways to update their products. Why? Because there are some shoppers out there who simply must have the newest gadget on the block. And that means more sales.
But this also gives savvy shoppers a great opportunity. That mower that was top-of-the-range last week is suddenly less attractive than the new model. Retailers want to have the Next Big Thing, and they only have so much storage space.
The solution? Discount that superseded mower to make way for the new version.
The price cuts here can be huge. And bear in mind, this is a mower that has all the same features it had before the new model was introduced. If it had positive reviews beforehand, it will work just as well now.
And a look at those reviews sometimes reveals an interesting truth: updates to well-loved machines aren’t always an improvement. Over time, that can actually push up the prices of the few remaining older models. So don’t delay too long!
Don’t be afraid to negotiate
Whatever time of year you decide to purchase your new mower, you’ll likely be making a big investment. It’s worth asking the retailer if there’s any movement on their price. Even if they say “no,” some will be prepared to offer free accessories or even fuel as a sweetener.
It’s a particularly good tactic if you’re shopping at the end of the season. That extra storage space will be precious to most retailers. And if they can shift some out-of-season gardening accessories too, so much the better.
Don’t be blinded by discounts
One final word of warning: discounts can be very tempting! Don’t be persuaded to buy a mower that doesn’t meet your needs just because there’s a big saving. You’ll end up with an expensive piece of equipment you don’t use. That’s hardly budget-friendly!
Do some online research before you head to the shops. This video from Consumer Reports takes you through the different kinds of mowers available. Check it out before you buy to see what type will work best for your conditions and preferences.
Ready to bag a bargain?
We hope you’ve enjoyed our tips on the best time to buy a lawn mower. Remember the golden rule that when demand is high, so are prices! Look out for holiday sales, or snap up well-established mowers at bargain prices when manufacturers release a new model.
But remember too that price is only part of the equation. Do your research first, and you can be confident you’ll be buying a mower that really meets your needs.