Back to school sales are long over, and holiday deals are still a month or more in the future, so October isn't really a big month for bargain hunting -- or is it? Now is actually a great time to find deals on items for your home or to get a jump on your holiday shopping. It's always a good idea to spread out those expenses so you're not hit with a killer credit card bill after all the presents are opened. Check out all the great deals you can find in October:
You're just about done with your lawn mower for the next six months or so, but if you wait until spring to replace it, you're going to pay a lot more. Take advantage of end-of-season deals on lawn mowers in October and enjoy a new toy to help deal with the leaves that take over your yard before it's time to retire your mower to the garage until next year.
Hot Prices: Sun Joe Mow Joe 17" Electric Lawn Mower for $199
| Platinum 190cc 22" Briggs & Stratton Rear Bag Rear Propelled Lawn Mower for $295
| John Deere LA115 19.5-HP Hydrostatic 42" Riding Mower for $1699
| More in Lawn Mowers
New appliances come out in September and October, pushing last year's models to the clearance aisle. Washing machines aren't like shoes -- an old model won't go more and more out of style with each passing season. If you're ready to upgrade some things around your house, you'll find great deals now.
Hot Prices: GE 25.0 Cu.ft. Refrigerator with Dispenser starting at $868
| Whirlpool Cabrio Energy Star 4.3 cu. ft. Top-Load Washer for $495
| GE Appliances Bisque 24" Built-in Dishwasher for just $280
| More in Home Appliances
Retailers like to kickstart their big toy selling season around October with some good deals and discounts. You've always said you were going to get an early start on holiday shopping -- this year, why don't you actually try to do it? There are three major benefits to toy shopping in October: you save money, you avoid rabid holiday crowds, and you spread out your holiday budget over more than one paycheck/credit card statement.
Read our insider tips about the hottest toys of the year
: Toy of the Year Awards 2010
| Editors' Picks: Fisher-Price Toys for 2010 Holiday Season
| Squinkies: One of the Hottest Toys for 2010
New computer models come out every three months or so. The last batch was in July for back to school, so a new bunch of computers will be hitting shelves this month.
Hot Prices: Acer Aspire One 10.1" Netbook starting at $256
| Lenovo G550 Notebook Laptop for $480
| Apple MacBook Notebook from $900
| More in Computers
Are you hosting a big group for Thanksgiving this year? Take a kitchen inventory and pounce on pre-holiday cookware promotions for major savings this month, just in time for holiday hosting.
Hot Prices: T-Fal Signature Nonstick 12-piece Cookware Set for $70
| Deni Oval Electric Skillet starting at $74
| Wolfgang Puck Bistro Elite 28-piece Gourmet Cookware Set for $280
| More in Cookware
Jewelry sales are hot around the holidays, Valentine's Day, Mother's Day, and the summer wedding season. Poke your head inside a jewelry shop any other time of year, and you'll find a bunch of bored sales associates, desperate for a commission. When sales are slow like they are in October, it's easy to score a big discount on fine jewelry. Shop early for a special holiday gift, or treat yourself to something sparkly just because. If you're buying someone a birthday present this month, October's birthstone is opal.
Hot Prices: Amethyst and Opal Ring in Sterling Silver for $99
| 2/5ctw Diamond Stud Earrings in 14KW Gold for $349
| 3 Sided Pave Diamond Ring with Sapphires, .75ctw, for $1390
| More in Jewelry
Breast Cancer Awareness Products
Also, October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, so it's naturally the best time to purchase products that donate money to Breast Cancer charities! Our friends at drugstore.com told us of these great products that also benefit breast cancer research.
: CLARISONIC Skin Care Brush Limited Edition Pink
| Tweezerman Breast Cancer Awareness Tweezer
| CHI Air Pro Expert Breast Cancer Awareness Combo Pack
What Not to Buy in October
Not everything is a great deal this month. The things you're probably most tempted to shop for right now are not the best items for your budget. Be patient for the prices to drop -- you'll be able to find steals in a matter of weeks.
Clothes -- The clearance racks are picked over by now, but you might get lucky and find a cute summer outfit for next year on deep discount. As for cold weather clothes, don't buy anything just yet. Retailers will promote jeans, sweaters, and jackets heavily this time of year, but the prices won't go down until after Thanksgiving -- and they'll drop even more after Christmas, if you can make it that far in last year's long sleeves.
If you just can't wait, you can always find nice prices on Old Navy Jeans, available online starting at $19 for men and $17 for women's styles.
Tools -- Colder weather will probably make you want to move from outdoor landscaping project to indoor fix-it jobs, and you might find you're ready to update your tool set. Do what you can with that old wrench for a few more months, and ask Santa to bring you new tools when they go on sale for the holidays.
If you just can't wait, browse tool sets online to find just what you need for your next big project.