· Set a budget. It is important to review your finances and know what you can comfortably spend on back to school shopping.
· If you have a student that insists on more items or expensive items, have them supplement the cost with allowance, side jobs, or savings.
· Make back to school shopping a fun game. This time of year, we are transitioning from summer to fall items. There are lots of clearance and sale items available. Tell them to find items for $10 and under.
· Buy only items that meet your budget, are of good quality and fit appropriately. Avoid buying splurges or poor quality items just because they are affordable.
· Consider spreading the cost out over the school year. Provide one new outfit monthly or ask family and friends to buy needed items for Christmas or birthday presents.
· Use what you have. Review what you have at home that can be reallocated or reused. Sometimes going through closets and dresser drawers, you find items that have not been worn or just need a good wash and iron to appear nice again.
· Visit discount stores-Consider starting your school shopping at resale shops. There are several now that carry name-brand, gently used items that are much more budget friendly.
· Exchange items among friends and neighbors. Often students want new items not because they are worn, but because they are bored with what they have. Consider getting a similar age group together to exchange items so that your student has new items to wear.
· Take advantage of back to school sales. Be careful to take advantage of just the sale items and avoid picking up other items.
· Consider waiting until after school starts to truly evaluate what is “needed” for the school year. Then take advantage of even further sales of back to school items that have not yet been purchased.
Have a budget friendly back to school shopping experience!