Several large retailers are promoting a Layaway program as a boost to their Christmas and Holiday promotions. I wanted to do some research and give you the details so you can make an informed decision. Here are some stipulations from one major retailer:
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- $5 Charge for activating a Layaway
- $50 minimum Layaway total
- Each item in the Layaway must be over $15
- If you don't pay for your Layaway in full by a certain date, you will get all your money back, EXCEPT for the $5 Activation Charge. Plus, you'll be charged an extra $10 for not fulfilling the agreement. On a $50 purchase, that's a 30% Service Charge, which is higher than some Credit Card fees.
Here's the bottom line. Honestly, the same items you might want to put in a Layaway will probably be on sale sometime between now and Christmas. There might even be a coupon available. Personally, I feel you'd be better off stashing away extra money each pay period now between now and Black Friday and take advantage of Hot Deals, Sales, Coupons and Rebates during that time frame. In most cases, I don't think there will be a shortage of items, so there shouldn't be a need to rush to "hold" something in Layaway.
Start making a list of items you want to buy for Christmas and the Holidays. Start now by putting a little money in an envelope every pay period or when ever you get some extra cash. That way you'll have a fund when the great deals come along (i.e. Black Friday).
Check back every Thursday afternoon for our Retail Round Up, which is a huge list of printable mall and store coupons you'll need for your weekend shopping! BTW - Have you checked out our new "Retail 101" ebook?
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