School Days, School Days – Saving Money on School Supplies

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Every year it’s the same routine. Summer gives way to fall, and once again it is time for a new school year to begin. That means getting the kids outfitted with new clothes and a new batch of school supplies. But as every parent knows, getting the kids ready for the new school year isn’t cheap, and it doesn’t take long before the family budget begins to sag a little in the middle. A payday loan could offer a much needed boost to your bank balance.

Buying the new year’s school supplies takes some careful juggling on the part of parents if they plan to keep the kids happy, and the family bank account solvent. But never fear, there are some easy tricks that can help you save money on this year’s batch of school supplies, and still get the kids everything they need to be ready for the first day of school.

Plan Your Shopping Days

Before you start any of your back to school shopping, you should check to see if your state offers a tax free weekend for back to school shoppers. Quite a few states around the country have adopted the tax free weekend as a way of relieving the tax burden on families with school aged children, and of giving an added boost to the local economy. Check with your local school board, or chamber of commerce to see if your state participates in this program. If they do, then plan to do as much of your back to school shopping over your state’s tax free weekend.

Make A List

All smart shoppers begin with a list. This keeps you focused on the project at hand, and reduces over spending and impulse buys. Before you start your back to school shopping spree, compile a detailed list everything your child will need for the new year. Most schools make lists available to parents, either on line or through their parent teacher associations, that outline the items that students will need to have to start the new year off right. Use this list as your guide, and only buy what your child actually needs for the new schools year, not what they think would be cool to have.

Watch for Sales

Shops usually start to advertise their back to school sales around the end of July or the beginning of August. Wait for these sales before you do any of your major shopping. These sales are a boon to parents looking to save money on their kid’s school supplies, and offer a great way to pick up the majority of your school staples. Most stores advertise a number of loss leaders to get customers through the doors. These are usually the most commonly needed school supplies, like pencils, pens, and notebooks. Use these back to school loss leaders as a way to stock up on the basic supplies your child will need for the new school year.

Skip the Name Brands

Every year your kids get inundated with commercials advertising all of the latest name brand back to school essentials. Designer label back packs and notebooks, expensive calculators and pocket recorders. No matter what your child tells you, they are not essential. Skip the over priced name brands, and shop for more affordable generic brands. Your kids will get over it, and your wallet will thank you.

Saving money on school supplies isn’t really difficult, it just takes a little bit of planning and some careful shopping. Take advantage of the annual sales, and only buy what you actually need for the new year. If you are shopping for more than one student, don’t forget that buying in bulk can help you to save even more money on supplies. Make this year’s back to school shopping a breeze by following these simple money saving tips.

Sarah Pinkerton

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