Back to school shopping can be draining on your wallet. According to the National Retail Federation’s annual survey, the average cost of school shopping– including supplies, electronics and clothes was a total of $688. That is a chunk of money being spent each year! And probably a big portion of that goes to clothing and shoes.
Fortunately, it is possible to get the kids closets ready for school without spending a lot of money and time by implementing these cost-cutting measures.
Set a Budget
Before heading out on a shopping spree, calculate how much you can afford to spend on each child for their back-to-school wardrobes.
Keep in mind that, just because something is a bargain, it doesn’t mean it is a good deal if you end up paying interest on unpaid balances.
Use Cash, Not Credit
After determining what your clothing and accessory budgets are, then head on over to the ATM and use cash. It helps keep you within your budget and if your kids are old enough, they can help do comparison shopping to get the most out of that cash.
Shop with your Smart Phone
Mobile shopping apps can allow you to scan products and allow you to do price comparing right there on the spot. You can also read reviews about the products and sometimes even download coupons. Some of the most popular mobile shopping apps include ShopSavvy, PriceGrabber and Price Check–although there are dozens to chose from and most of them are free to download.
Check out The Dress Code
Before hitting the stores, check with your child’s school. Knowing the dress code before going out shopping for clothes can prevent you from wasting money on items the kids won’t even be able to wear to school.
Borrow, Borrow, Borrow
You probably know someone, whether a family member or a friend, that have clothing or uniforms that their kids have outgrown. By borrowing those items before your child hits their next growth spurt, you can save a lot of money.
Consider Consignment Stores
Spread out Clothing Purchases
By purchasing clothing throughout the year instead of purchasing it all in the beginning of the school year, you will not only save money but you can take advantage of off-season sales. I mean, it’s warm enough now to still be able to wear summer clothing, so pick up a few of those discounted clothes. You can even consider buying a few sizes up when it comes to basics and keep them around for the following year.
And a bonus: if your child hits a growth spurt, you won’t have to invest in an entire new wardrobe mid-year!
The bottom line is, back to school shopping can be pricey. However when you plan, stick to a budget and do a little research, you can save not only money, but aggravation!