Cool Ideas

Save Sanity when School Shopping With a Little Extra Planning

Remember when you were a kid and the much-anticipated summer break seemed to last forever? Like it or not, back-to-school time is here and families are all busily making their way through stores as we speak. Still need to get started? Here are some tips to save you some money and sanity during this busy time:

School supplies:

  • Go through your house to see what supplies you have on hand already like crayons, scissors, calculators, and the like.
  • The Sunday circulars are chock full of back-to-school ads from various stores. Spend some time to sit down and compare prices. Make lists of what you wish to purchase at each store.
  • For the items you do need to buy, shop during off hours when it’s quieter and the aisles are less crowded. This will save tons of time and frustration.
  • Shop as early in the season as possible to get your pick from the widest selection of offers.
  • Will your child need a second round of supplies halfway into the year? Pick them all up now to save the time later.
  • Are your kids excited about getting their supplies? Bring them along and make a fun trip of it. Are they dreading school and any of the preparations? Save yourself the trouble and head to the stores alone.

School clothes:

  • Haul out your kids’ fall clothes from storage and take inventory. Be sure to know what you already have before spending money on new clothes! This takes some organization but is well worth the time and effort.
  • Check your school supply list thoroughly; in addition to pens and paper, your child may be required to bring in some clothing such as a pair of gym shoes or gym shirt to leave at the school.
  • When clothes shopping, don’t skimp across the board. Saving money is great, but buying sturdier shoes that will last a year is better in the long run than buying a bottom-of-the-line pair that will need to be replaced in a few months.
  • Resist the temptation to over-buy. You can always visit the stores again if you realize a month down the line your kids don’t have enough shirts or pants.

A little extra planning and thought can save you a lot of money and hassle! Happy school shopping!