According to Forbes.com, now may be the best time to make some of those major purchases wise shoppers have been putting off for so long, particularly if one has the luxury of capital. The Forbes list:
1. Homes. Low prices fueled by foreclosures and short sales, coupled with low interest rates and possible income tax credits, make this an opportune time to shop real estate.
2. Cars. Automobile dealers are dealing as never before: 0 percent financing, big cash rebates and other incentives make for some historic deals. Even used car prices are down 10 percent from a year ago.
3. Vacations. Las Vegas hotel room rates are down an average of 34 percent from a year ago, cruises are offering some amazing bargains, like $1000 per person for summer week-long Alaska cruises (including airfare). Airlines are also offering some bargain fares.
4. Toys. Prices for playthings are headed down this summer and are expected to stay down for holiday shopping.
5. High Dividend Stocks. With the S&P down 40 percent (more or less) from a year ago and the prospect of inflationary times ahead, now may be a great time for the courageous investor to pick up some stock bargains that have a history of divident payments.
6. Laptop Computers. Prices for laptops are falling, thanks in part to recent buying activity in those handy little netbooks. Computer deals abound almost everywhere.
7. Diamonds. The recession has dulled even the diamond market, with prices for polished diamonds down an average of 14 percent from their highs last summer.
8. Clothing. Men’s and women’s clothing are filling the clearance racks. Remember how Saks Fifth Avenue started their 80 percent off sales before Christmas last year? There are lots of bargains, especially with more expensive lines.
9. Televisions. We recently had to replace a large flat panel television, and were blown away with the replacement price at Costco. As more manufacturers enter the flat panel TV business, prices are drooping precipitously.
10. Furniture. With fewer people buying homes, furniture sales have drastically fallen off. Many furniture retailers are going out of business and clearance sales are driving much of the home furnishings market.
As a Boston real estate broker, I find it interesting that Forbes put real estate in the number one position–and cannot help but recall Baron Rothschild’s famous saying, Buy when there’s blood in the streets.
How much blood is the question….