Did you know that the average American family spends $400 per child on back to school expenses?
Take a look at these 15 easy ways to save on back to school shopping, and I’m sure you’ll find a way to take a bite out of that $400 per child back to school expense!
- Resale, Thrift or Consignment Shops: When it comes to clothes shopping, consider giving teens a clothing allowance, and let them make the choice of where to shop. They might think twice about buying a brand new pair of $80 jeans when they could buy 4 pairs of trendy jeans at resale shops like Platos Closet or Buffalo Exchange. Consider it a lesson in budgeting for your teen! Learn more about saving moneyat resale or consignment shops.
- Tax Free Weekend: Do you know when your state’s tax free shopping weekend is? Check out the complete list of tax free weekend dates by state.
- Needs vs. Wants: Back to school shopping is the perfect time to have a discussion about needs vs. wants with your child. Before shopping, take time to organize your child’s closet and look through old school supplies, so you can make a list of the items he or she really needs. Then…with list in hand…tackle those needs and avoid the temptation of wants!
- Coupon Codes: If you’re shopping online…don’t leave the coupon code box blank! Ebates.com will help you find money saving coupon codes, and you’ll earn cash back on your purchases! It’s a win-win! If you’re not familiar with saving money using coupon codes, learn how to find coupon codes.
- Backpacks: Have you ever thought of T.J. Maxx, Marshall’s or Ross for backpacks? Last year, we bought a name brand, $65 backpack for $12.99, it was exactly what my daughter was looking for!
- Textbook Rental: If you have a college student, it’s time to look into renting textbooks and saving big!
- Discounted Gift Cards: Do you regularly shop stores like Payless Shoes, Target, Children’s Place or Kohl’s? Buy Discounted Gift Cards For Up To 30% Off at Cardpool.com!
- Scout Uniforms: You’ll find huge savings on gently used Scout uniforms on e-bay!
- Haircuts: Oh the ways you can save on haircuts! Try your local beauty school for a haircut at a fraction of the cost. If your son has a basic crew cut, my friend promises it’s easy to do yourself…she said her razor even came with hair cutting instructions! Maybe your child only needs a bang trim…did you know most salons offer complimentary bang trims or bang trims for as little as $5. A quick bang trim is an easy way to extend the time between expensive haircuts!
- School Supplies: The back to school sales have begun, and it’s worth the price of your Sunday paper to check out the massive amount of sale ads and compare prices. You’ll always find the Walmart, Target and Office Depot sale insert in the Sunday paper. How about letting your older children look for the best buys and make the shopping list? Don’t forget to order a discounted gift card from Cardpool.com to save at Office Depot!
- Musical Instruments: New to the band or orchestra? You might consider renting your child’s musical instrument or searching Craigslist for used musical instruments. You never know if the band or orchestra is something they’ll stick with!
- Water Bottles: More than 40 billion plastic water bottles are used each year in the U.S., and about 2/3 of those end up in landfills! Kick the plastic water bottle habit this year, and you’ll save about $20 a month. Those cute metal refillable bottles are available for a few bucks at Homegoods, T.J. Maxx, Marshalls or Ross. Another option is a Brita® refillable bottle with a built-in filter.
- School Projects: Each year we buy so many tri-fold display boards and expensive foam core boards for school projects…only to throw them away at the end of the school year. I’ve finally come up with an easy money saving alternative…use ticky-tack to adhere the information to the display board, and when the project is complete, simply remove and reuse! You’ll even be able to reuse those pricey die-cut letters!
- Sports Equipment: Huge savings await you on sports equipment at places like Goodwill, Play It Again Sports & E-Bay. You might also consider trading in your used or outgrown sports equipment at Play It Again Sports.
- Swapping instead of Shopping: Consider organizing a clothes swap with other moms.
Please leave a comment to share your easy ways to save on back to school shopping.
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