It is that time of year again. Fall is just around the corner, and it’s time to think of how to save money during back-to-school shopping. Here’s how:
1. Make a Budget and Stick to It
Set a budget before you shop, and give your kids responsibility for staying on budget. That will save you from impulse buying and stop your kids from pressuring you with “my friends have this” or “my friends have that” because you have let them know the amount you will not exceed.
You can let them decide where they want to spend their budget dollars. They may prefer to splurge on a good pair of running shoes and spend less on the latest shirt style, for example.
2. Be Flexible About When You Buy
Buy clothes offseason or on clearance. You can buy them offseason or clearance clothes a little large so that the kids can grow into them.
3. Watch for Sales and Compare Prices
Check the inserts of your paper or any flyers you get in the mail for any upcoming sales. Stores like Staples, Office Max, Office Depot and Wal-Mart may have school supply sales at different times.
Follow stores online on Facebook and Twitter. It is an easy and quick way to keep up with sales and find deals. Many companies will send their loyal followers an advance notice of sales and also coupon links.
4. Consider Used Clothing
Yard sales can be a good source of used clothes, and the pricing can often be flexible. The seller may be eager to get the clothes off their hands and give you a deal if you buy a lot at once. Other options are consignment shops and thrift stores.
Knowing that consignment shops sell goods from patrons and gives a portion of the sales back the patron, and thrift stores usually sell donated goods at a mark up to earn a profit for charity may help in your decision of where to buy.
5. Take a Trip to Your Local Dollar Store
You can find a surprising array of supplies at a dollar store. Items can range from pens and pencils, paper, binders, as well as art supplies, calculators and locks for lockers.
6. Swap Clothes with Other Mothers
Get together with fellow mothers in the neighbourhood and arrange a day when everyone brings clothing for exchanging.
7. Use School Supplies That Are Left Over from the Previous Year
Search your home for leftover supplies and use up what you already have.
8. Instead of buying new books, download
Buying books online is cheaper than buying books. Or, if you can’t buy online, buy the textbooks used.
9. Don’t Buy Everything at Once
Pick up supplies here and there over a period of time. It will give you time to save up, and you won’t have to spend a large amount all at once.
With a little planning, you can really save on back-to-school items!