Even though it feels like the summer just started a few days ago, it’s almost time for back to school shopping.
As a kid, I LOVED back to school shopping. There’s something about the new notebooks, binders, pens, and pencils that almost made the beginning of the school year feel more like a fresh start than spring or even New Year’s Day. While I loved shopping for school supplies back then (and I still do now too!), what I loved even more than that was shopping for new school clothes.
Now that I’m an adult, I can see how this time of year might be extra stressful for parents as they have to shell out quite a bit of money for new school supplies, clothes, and other school fees for their children. The cost of all of these things can really add up, especially if you have more than one kid to buy things for. Luckily there are a few ways you can reduce the impact of back to school shopping on your wallet. Here are four of them.
Assess True Needs
It’s true that kids grow really, really fast- but that doesn’t necessarily mean that they need a whole new wardrobe every school year. There were times that my brother and I basically got all new clothes, but there were also years that we got 3-4 new things. It just depended on how much we had that still fit us. Before shopping for school clothes you also need to think about how much quantity you truly need. Does your kid need a few new pairs of jeans, or can they get by with what they still have from last year ?
On the school supply side of things, look at what they have left over from last year that can still be used. Lots of times my notebooks were not completely used up so my parents didn’t buy five new ones, even if that’s how many were on the school supply list from the teacher. Instead they bought 2-3 and I had to use up the ones I had from the year before too.
Look for Bargains
Finding bargains on school supplies is pretty easy, nearly every store that carries school supplies will have them on sale this time of year. Though I think one of the best ways to buy back to school supplies is buying them from Amazon to make things easier. That being said, finding school clothes at a discount can be a little more difficult as you never really know how good a deal the sale really is at a clothing store.
By watching advertised prices on things you know you’ll need, like jeans, for a few weeks you can get a good idea of when they are at their lowest price.
Another strategy to use when shopping for school clothes is to buy used. You can scout out good deals at garage sales and yard sales throughout the summer months and then hit a thrift store to do as much of the remaining school clothes shopping you have left as possible.
There were some years that the majority of my school clothes were hand-me-downs from my older cousins or friends. I didn’t care, for the most part, that the clothes were used. I was just excited to have new things to wear in my everyday wardrobe.
My brother probably got even more hand-me-downs than I did because he used clothes and toys after I had out grown them – assuming they weren’t too girly of course. 🙂
Will you be doing any back to school shopping this year? Have you used any of these strategies to save on back to school shopping? What other ways can you think of to save on back to school shopping?
Photo courtesy of: LexnGer