DIY chain Homebase set the pace with a bigger-than-expected jump in like-for-like sales of 11% in the 13 weeks to August 31, while Argos rose 2.7%.
Shares in Home Retail improved 3% today as the FTSE 250 company said it was in good operational shape ahead of Christmas, although it still expects the overall pattern of consumer spending to remain subdued.
Home Retail said Homebase's successful summer reflected strong sales of seasonal products, which represent around 40% of total sales in the quarter.
Big ticket sales such as kitchens were also slightly ahead as total revenues for the quarter improved by 9.3% to £400 million in the three months. Three stores closed in the quarter, reducing the store portfolio to 333.
The favourable weather also benefited Argos, with seasonal products doing well alongside continued growth in electricals.
Home Retail said the internet now accounted for 44% of all Argos sales, with sales though mobile and tablet apps more than double a year earlier.
The company is reducing its dependence on its catalogues after a period in which the business has been squeezed by the economic downturn and competition from the likes of Amazon.
Last year, Home Retail chief executive Terry Duddy set out plans to grow Argos sales from £3.9 billion to £4.5 billion a year in 2018 in a digital push involving the closure or relocation of some stores and a cut in the print circulation of the catalogue.