Here Are the Best Times to Buy a TV
If you're in the market for a new television, wait until next month. TVs sold in online stores are historically cheapest in August and November, according to a study of product pricing by data analytics firm Indix.
This year, the average TV price for four of the top five brands—Samsung, LG, Sony and Sharp—ranges from $1,200 to $1,600, said Indix. Vizio, the popular budget-conscious brand that was acquired by China's LeEco Global in July, has an average of $566. But with a little patience and careful timing, you can snag one for much less.
While TV prices have been on the rise overall, August and November have seen significant discounts for at least the past three years, thanks in part to back-to-school and Black Friday specials, said Indix, which looked at monthly pricing data from more than 80 online stores and product assortments from 249 retailers. The Seattle data company, founded by ex-Microsoft Vice President Sanjay Parthasarathy, culls information from online stores and sells it to companies looking to track movements in pricing, promotions, product availability and assortment.
Beyond the calendar year, age is another factor. Similar to the way a car drops in value the minute you drive it off the lot, TV prices decline almost as soon as they hit store shelves. If you don't need the latest curved, 4K ultra high-definition screen right away, you're better off seeking out slightly older sets to find the real bargains. After a year, the average model can be found 20 percent cheaper than its debut price, Indix said.
If you're looking for variety, Amazon.com has the largest selection of TVs, with 2,060 models, according to Indix data. After the Everything Store, Newegg comes in second, followed by Sears and Walmart. Amazon is also often the cheapest. While Amazon and Walmart are on average about the same price for the same model, Newegg and Sears charge more for the same model available on Amazon. Wherever you shop, a flat-screen with light emitting diode technology in the 30 to 50-inch range is the best bang for your buck.
Perhaps the best part? Because the data are based on online stores, you can use this as a guide to avoid standing in line for an early-morning door buster on Black Friday.