Parents, get ready to open up your wallets. It’s about time to start shopping for school supplies.
According to the National Retail Federation, on average people with children in kindergarten through high school will spend $688.62 on their children’s back-to-school shopping, up from $603.63 last year. That money, combined with back-to-college spending, will total $83.8 billion, “serving as the second biggest consumer spending event for retailers behind the winter holidays.”
Patch has compiled some tips for how to stay within your family’s budget on these shopping sprees. And we want to hear what tricks you have, too. Please add your thoughts to the comment section below so your neighbors can benefit from your frugal wisdom.
Frugal Living suggests going on a shopping trip through your home before you hit the stores:
See if there are any items on your child's school supply list that you might already have. Things like rulers, pencil boxes, calculators and backpacks do not need to be replaced each year, so don't be afraid to reuse last year's if it's still in good shape.
The website has a creative solution to how to get personalized supplies on the cheap:
Plain Jane school supplies always cost less then their fancier counterparts, but let's face it: to a kid they just aren't as fun. The solution? Buy the budget-friendly basics; then, let your kiddo jazz them up with stickers and colorful doodles.
Organized Home explains that the “shop at home” strategy works better with some advanced planning:
Designate a box, shelf or covered records box as School Supply Central. This tip will serve you well throughout the year the year. Find that stash of 9-cent boxes of crayons or a few packs of binder paper from last summer's shopping spree? Tuck them into the box.
You can save 50% or more off the cost off a new textbook by downloading it from CafeScribe. … Students can also rent textbooks from "Kindle Textbook Rentals" for 30 days to a year for 80% off the price for the paper books.