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5 Back-to-School Savings Tips

Aug 23, 2016
Back to School

Summer never seems to last long enough. As we begin to see the last few weeks of the season peer over the horizon, families are all thinking about the same thing: back-to-school.

While students might be moaning and groaning about heading back into the classroom this fall, moms and dads are preparing for a shakeup in their schedules too. Pretty soon, parents will be back into the swing of things, which includes waking up extra early, packing lunch, and breaking out the books for evening homework help.

It also means back-to-school shopping, which can really add up if you're not careful! If you want to head back-to-school without overspending, consider the following tips for back-to-school savings.

Back to School Savings Tips

  1. Reuse and Recycle. Before you head into the shops for new outfits, pencils, paper and other items, check last year's inventory. You might have some unused materials that can still be valuable for this year. Don't just buy new for the sake of it. Be sure that any clothes that still fit and pens that still write are used to their full potential! Doing this can help boost your bottom dollar.
  2. Set a budget. Figure out a realistic plan of how much you're able to spend and stick to it. Remember that taking your kids shopping can be a great teachable moment. Include them on the process, from making a list to weighing the pros and cons of certain items. It's never too early to start teaching a young child about the importance of being financially responsible. In fact, learning a basic understanding of money early on can be hugely beneficial later in life.
  3. Make a list. Between the crowds, cars and commotion, heading out to department stores can be stressful. Nothing is more effective for taming the chaos than a well-organized list. Not only will a list help guide you through your shopping experience, but it will help you stay on budget! Sticking to "list items only" will help avoid impulse purchases and other wasteful spending.
  4. Prepare for next school year. During the next few months, keep an eye out for different items that go on sale "out of season" and stock up for the following school year. This might include binders, note cards or other items that aren't clumped together during the hustle and bustle of back-to-school.
  5. Utilize your smartphone. Today's "coupon clipping" has gone digital in many ways. Savvy shoppers are aware of apps that can help you with your back-to-school shopping. With several apps, you can organize discounts, search for online coupon codes or sign up for notifications that will alert you about deals at your favorite department stores.

You don't need to break the bank during the start of the new school year. These back-to-school savings tips should help you organize your budget and enjoy the rest of summer!

erin_elis

Erin Ellis
Accredited Financial Counselor
Philadelphia Federal Credit Union
eellis@pfcu.com
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