Tips for Saving on Back to School Shopping
The start of school is right around the corner which means back to school shopping time is here. Not only can hunting for the best deals become time consuming, it can also be expensive, especially for families who have a few kids returning to school in the fall. Here are some ways that you can get everything needed for success in the upcoming school year without breaking the bank.
Before You Buy:
Check Your Home
Sometimes, the things we have right in our own home may surprise us. Check closets, desk drawers, your garage, your attic, etc. for long lost school supplies from previous years. See what supplies are salvageable and what can be passed from one sibling to another before you venture out to the store.
Arrange a Neighborhood Swap
Organize a time with family, friends, and neighbors to pool your resources together and see what can be used for the upcoming school year. Not only could this help everyone stay on budget, it could be a great social event to kick off a new year back at school.
Create a School Supply Drive
Creating a school supply drive is easier than ever. Make a list of all the school supplies needed for your school for the upcoming year. Decide on a drop-off location for all donations. Create a start and end date for the drive. Then simply relay the information through social media, word of mouth, and/or flyers. You can even make online wish lists on Amazon. People can send supplies directly to the organizer of the event or the school itself through Amazon.
Encourage Local Businesses to Adopt a Classroom
Many local businesses are committed to supporting the communities in which they are located, and supporting schools is a great way for them to do that. Approach a few local businesses and see if they are willing to help sponsor your child’s classroom. For retail shops, entertainment venues or restaurants, perhaps organize a fundraising night where the business will donate a percentage of their profits to your child’s classroom supply fund.
Don’t Forget about Clothes
New clothes are a must for a new school year. Before going shopping, check your child’s closet and drawers for unworn clothes that have been pushed to the back from the previous school year. If the clothes still fit, they could be a great addition to this season’s wardrobe. If they don’t fit but are in good condition, keep them in use by either passing them on as hand-me-downs or taking them to a consignment shop where you will earn money when the clothes sell. And while you are there be sure to look around for new wardrobe items for your kids.
When You’re Ready to Shop, Buy Smart:
Look for the Bargains
Make sure you’re getting the best value for what you’re buying. Check ahead of time to see if there are any sales, promotions, or incentives for buying at different locations. The dollar store is a great place to go first for school supplies. Don’t be afraid to order in bulk online either. A little bit of planning and store hopping could save you in the long run.
Buy Only What You Need
It’s no secret that school supplies are the most expensive right before school starts. Buy only what you need for the first two weeks of school. Normally, at the end of September, stores will put their unsold supplies on clearance. This is the same for clothes. Buy a new outfit or two for the first day/week of school, but hold off on your big purchases until the clothes go on sale later in the season.
There are several ways to save on back to school shopping this season. With a little planning, research, event planning, and fundraising, you can keep your purchases within your budget for back to school supplies and clothes.