Back-to-school shopping might be as stressful for you as the first day of school is your child. Between backpacks, clothes and colored pencils, you’re dreading the chunk about to come out of your bank account.
But it doesn’t have to be as expensive as you think. With a few hacks, you can save money on back-to-school supplies.
Here are our top tips for back-to-school budgeting:
1. Wait For The List Of Supplies
You can save yourself time and money by holding off on shopping until you receive the list of school supplies from your child’s teacher.
Otherwise, you might end up buying items that aren’t required.
2. Check To See What You Already Have At Home
You might be surprised at how many school supplies you already have at home – still sitting in your child’s backpack or school bins from last year.
Things like binders, art supplies, rulers, calculators can be used again. Salvage the treasures, place them in a container and make a list of what you found.
That way, when you go to the store, you know what you don’t need to buy.
3. Create A List & Set A Budget
After marking off the items you have, you can now shop with a clear mind about what’s necessary.
Give yourself a total back-to-school budget. Then do a rough estimate of which required supplies you need to buy so you can figure out how much is leftover for clothes.
4. Shop At Your Local Dollar Store
Unless you have six kids that you’re shopping for (wherein Costco or Sam’s Club might be the more budget-friendly option), shopping at dollar stores are great for the little things like pocket tissues, paper, pencils, crayons, glue sticks, etc.
5. Buy Generic
A plain notebook might cost 80 cents, while a notebook with your child’s favorite cartoon characters on it might be $1.50. The little difference in price really adds up when you’re buying 20 items.
Of course, generic doesn’t have to mean boring. A plain notebook or binder is the perfect blank canvas for your child to decorate and make his or her own.
6. Invest In Two Key Items
A good backpack and a good pair of shoes.
These two items get the most use and abuse. If they’re not of a higher quality they will fall apart faster.
You’ll save money in the long-run by not having to buy these two items again midway through the year.
7. Follow Your Favorite Stores On Social Media
All the places you like to clothes-shop for your kid are likely having deals, specials and sales this time of the year.
Follow your favorites on social media so don’t miss out on anything big.
8. Shop At Kid’s Consignment Stores
Kids grow fast. Shopping at kid’s consignment stores can save you a lot of money since that shirt you’re going to buy your son or daughter probably won’t fit in a year.
9. Hold Off On The Fall & Winter Clothes For Now
There will be Fall / Winter sales come September. For now, to keep you within budget, just focus on purchasing a few back-to-school outfits.
Also, try buying pieces that you can mix-and-match so you’re getting the best deal for your money.
With these tips, we hope we showed you that back to school doesn’t need to break the bank.