According to National Retail Federation, the average American family spends just over $600 (based on 2 children) on back to school shopping…YIKES! This year, challenge yourself to be below average. Don’t worry, The Budget Diet girl has plenty of money saving tips to help you spend less than the national average on back to school shopping.
Back to School Money Saving Tips
Make a List – 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! Shopping without a list is a guaranteed budget buster.
Do Your Research – Before you step foot in a store or make an online purchase, do a little “homework.” The Sunday paper is a great starting point and don’t forget Retail Me Not for deals, in-store coupons and online coupons. They’re the largest digital coupon website in the United States, and you’ll find savings on everything from school supplies to school uniforms, computers to dorm gear. They’ve created a Back-to-School deals page to make it easy for you.
Refuse to Pay Full Price – If it’s not on sale…don’t buy it. If you can’t find a coupon…don’t buy it. Could you find some items at a thrift store or could you organize a neighborhood back-to-school swap? This strategy alone will help you stay below the national average.
Shop Tax Free – Do you know when your state’s tax free shopping weekend is? Check out the complete list of tax free weekend dates by state, mark your calendar, shop and save.
Gather Your Coupons – Now that you’ve done your homework, don’t leave home without your list and your coupons. Even better, download the RetailMeNot Mobile Coupon App, so the deals and coupons are just a click away.
Parents aren’t the only ones trying to save money on back to school shopping. Do you know that nearly 9 out of 10 teachers have had to pay for classroom supplies for their students using their own money! Do you know a teacher that’s in need of supplies? If so, create a You Tube video to nominate your favorite teacher to win a 3-minute Costco shopping spree provided by RetailMeNot. WOW…imagine how many school supplies you could load up on in 3 minutes! Check out the official rules and details here, and be sure to submit your nomination by Saturday, August 10, 2013.
That’s it. You should be set to come in below average on your back to school shopping. Please leave a comment to let me know how you did.
Happy Shopping and Happy Saving!
This post is sponsored by RetailMeNot, but all opinions are my own.