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It’s Time for Back to School Shopping

by Tania Cowling | August 17th, 2016 | Elementary, Seasonal

child backpackHave you ever experienced a “before-school-starts” nightmare to try and find the “coolest” clothes or the most efficient tablet? I have. Hopefully some of these “I’ve been there” tips will help get your school shopping done somewhat stress-free. It’s all about the planning.

With school bells ringing in August (for others September) it is time for back to school school. One of the first things to do with your elementary-aged kids before shopping is to sort and purge their closet. This can be a rough task for your child who wants to hold onto everything and yet for some kids, the thought of new duds is a blessing. Bring out three bins for this activity: donations, hand-me-downs for younger siblings, and toss. Clothes to toss can be outgrown, worn out, or what your child would consider “Not Cool.”

Next, make a clothing wish list. Your young student can look through magazines or online for items of clothing she really wants. Then add these picks to your list, making sure to keep your budget in mind. Now, with this list it’s time to find the sales. If your state offers a tax-free weekend, use this time to stock up on clothing and school supplies. Don’t forget about the much-needed backpacks. Believe me, the tax money adds up when you have to shop for several children, not only clothing but some states throw in electronics ,too. Otherwise, shop early before all the good things are picked over.

Remember, a good shopper is one who takes advantage of school shopping sales. Here are a few tips:

  • Always shoot for stores that match competitive pricing. Call about a big-ticket item and see if they can beat the price you received elsewhere.
  • Take travel costs in account. If you have to drive across town, are you really saving money? Consider time and costs of transportation to see if this sale is truly a savings.
  • Check out Internet sites that compare prices for items online, especially higher ticket necessities. Some sites also compare prices offered at stores in your area. Then, if you shop online, make sure to add in the shipping costs to see if you found a winning sale.

When it comes to school supplies you know your child will need paper and pencils, but truthfully I wouldn’t buy a slew of folders, markers, and other entities until you get a list from the school. Each teacher may have particular products that he feels appropriate for the subjects he teaches. I know in my locale, they hold a “get to know your teacher day” prior to the first day of school. This is the time to “meet and greet” the faculty at your child’s school and get that super important list of supplies needed. Then, jump into those sales!

Back to school doesn’t need to be fretful, just begin with some organization. Your shopping days can be stress-free and even a fun experience between you and your child.

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