9 Stores With the Best Layaway Programs

Layaway is growing in popularity with stores and shoppers as a budget-friendly alternative to buying with credit cards. What was once an option for cash-only customers during the 1970s, layaway programs are getting a good dusting off with more current trends like confusing fees, cancellation charges, and shorter pickup dates. It is still a great option for shoppers who prefer to pay cash and want to break up the payments, but it is important to know how much it will cost.

Take a look at the list of stores now offering layaway and compare fees and time limitations so that you get the best deal.

AAFES Layaway Program


AAFES offers three convenient ways to layaway merchandise all year round:

  • 30-day layaway for all clothing, handbags, and shoes.
  • 60-day layaway for all other merchandise (except jewelry).
  • 120-day layaway for fine jewelry.

To layaway a purchase they require that the purchase is $25.00 or more. A 15% deposit is required and there is a non-refundable $3.00 service fee for processing. A $5.00 fee is charged for canceled layaways.

Merchandise excluded from layaway includes clearance merchandise, computers, peripheral, and major appliances, furniture, mattresses, exercise equipment, seasonal and outdoor living, and electronics $299 and up.

Layaway is only available for in-store shoppers. 

Baby Depot Layaway Program

Baby Depot at Burlington

Baby Depot is a division of Burlington Coat Factory. The Baby Depot division sells various brands of discounted car seats, baby clothing, cribs, changing tables, baby furniture, gliders, and nursery essentials. 

Baby Depot has a year-round 90-day in-store layaway program.

Fees: A 20% deposit based on the total sale amount is due at the time of purchase. An additional 20% payment is due 14 days from the purchase date. 

There is a $5.00 nonrefundable fee and a $10.00 cancellation fee (plus tax where applicable) upon any change to layaway or if layaway is returned to stock.

Refunds of layaway deposits are given the form of a gift card and not a cash refund.

Babys R Us and Toys R Us Layaway Programs

Babies R Us and Toys R Us
Toys R Us

The layaway program for Toys R Us and Babys R Us is available in-store only. Most items are eligible for layaway with the exception of certain categories like food/formula, clothing, and special orders.

Toys R Us' layaway plan requires a 10% deposit and a $5.00 non-refundable service fee for the 90-day program, but the stores do offer free layaway promotions from time to time when all upfront fees are waived. Better still, you can make your layaway payments in-store or online. 

There is a $10.00 cancellation fee for layaways canceled by the customer or for layaways returned to stock for non-payment.

A picture ID is required when putting items on layaway, for pickups and refunds.

Note: Layaways may be held at another location. As a result, not all layaway purchases are available for immediate pick up after the final payment is made. For certain items, the pickup may not be available for up to 14 days after you pay the full balance.


Big Lots Layaway Program

Big Lots, Inc. logo
PRNewsFoto/Big Lots, Inc.

Big Lots has a plan similar to a layaway plan, but it is not promoted and it may not be available at all stores. The program is called "Price Hold" and it is mostly used for furniture purchases.

Fees: When putting an item on "Price Hold" 10% of the purchase price is required as a deposit. Big Lots will then hold the item for 90 days.Some stores may charge a nonrefundable $5.00 fee.

Lease-to-Own Program from Progressive Leasing

Another option offered to Big Lots shoppers is the lease-to-own program which is managed through Progressive Leasing.  Qualifying items include sofas, loveseats, sectionals, dining sets, and mattresses, as well as seasonal items such as outdoor patio furniture, gazebos, umbrellas, grills, chairs and more. 

The policies differ from each state and the program is not offered in New Jersey, Wisconsin, Minnesota or Vermont.

Most lease agreements are for a maximum of 12 months but can be up to 15 months. There are also shorter 90-day agreements available in some areas.

Burlington Coat Factory Layaway Program

Burlington Coat Factory
Burlington Coat Factory

Burlington Coat Factory has offered layaway to customers for over 45 years. Shoppers have the option to use layaway all year, not just during the holiday season. Layaway is only an option for in-store shoppers.

Shop in stores and take your layaway merchandise to the customer service desk.

Merchandise may be put on layaway for 60 days.

Fees: A 20% deposit based on the total sale amount is due at the time of purchase. An additional 20% payment is due 14 days from the purchase date. 

There is a $5.00 nonrefundable fee. However, Burlington implemented a policy in 2016 that offered layaway customers a $5.00 promotional card when they completed paying for their layaway on time. Check with your local stores to see if the policy is still in effect.

There is a $10.00 cancellation fee (plus tax where applicable) upon any change to a layaway or if layaway is returned to stock.

Refunds of layaway deposits are returned to the shopper in the form of a gift card and not a cash refund.

Restrictions: No food products.

Hallmark Gold Crown Layaway Program

Hallmark Gold Crown
Hallmark Gold Crown

Hallmark Gold Crown stores have layaway programs all year in the corporately owned stores. They offer a 60-day program with a 20% deposit requirement, but only full-priced items can be put on layaway. To find a store near you, visit the Hallmark Gold Crown store locator.

Note: Not all of the Hallmark Gold Crown stores offer layaway, so be sure to ​ask at your local store. 

TJ Maxx and Marshalls Layaway Programs

Marshalls and TJMax
Marshalls and TJMax

The off-price store TJ Maxx offers layaway in some, but not all of the stores. A deposit of 10% is required and layaways must be paid in full within 30 days. Jewelry and clearance merchandise may not be placed on layaway.

There is a non-refundable service fee and a cancellation fee of $5.00. The service fee may not be the same in all locations so it is a good idea to contact your local store for more information.

Sears and Kmart Layaway Programs

Sears and Kmart
Sears and Kmart

Kmart and Sears offer both eight and 12-week in-store layaway contracts. For purchases of $300.00 or more at Kmart and $400 or more at Sears, a 12-week option is also available. Except where prohibited by law, an eight-week contract requires a $5.00 service fee and a 12-week layaway contract requires a $10.00 service fee.

Items that are available for online layaway will be identified as "Available for Layaway" on the individual product page.

Four payment installments are required for the eight-week plan and six for the 12-week plan. Payments can be made in the store where the layaway is on hold or online.

Payments will be refunded on canceled layaways minus the service fees and $15.00 for eight-week layaways and $25.00 for 12-week layaways. Layaways will be canceled seven days after payments are due.

For more information read the Kmart and Sears layaway policies online.

Walmart's Holiday Layaway Program

Walmart Logo

Each year, Walmart seems to extend its holiday layaway program. The annual program has begun as early as late August and typically runs through mid-December. The program is offered in stores only but extends to some big ticket items like electronics, furniture, toys, select sporting goods, small appliances, and even jewelry.

To be eligible, individual items must be priced at $10 or more, and the total layaway purchase must be at least $50. Layaway orders not paid in full and picked up by the layaway's end date are subject to a $10 cancellation fee but will be refunded.

For more information, visit the Walmart Layaway policy page that is posted online.