It is never too late to start thinking about back-to-school season, even if school has just ended.
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Families spend a lot of money each year to get kids ready for back-to-school. For example, families with school-aged children expect an average of $848.90 for back-to-school supplies and gear. That’s a total expense of $37.1 billion spent nationally, according to the National Retail Federation, which is an all-time high reported in the annual survey.
Families can save some of that expense by planning for back to school and following some basic steps along the way. You can get organized by using your favorite online calendar to help plan your attack and to keep tabs on budgeting for your back-to-school shopping.
Here are some top ways to save while preparing to send your children back to school with everything they need.
1. Start Early With Weekly Shopping
It’s time to get organized and plan your back-to-school shopping. Prices change frequently, so you want to stay on top of what sales are possible for items your child may need in their backpack. Make a list of items you know will be required for school, focus on the stores with the best selections and prices, collect their sale notices and listings, and schedule your visits to those stores around their sales.
It’s a good idea to enter each store’s sales period in your calendar to keep track of those discount periods. Then, for harder-to-find items, consider watching for price drops at a particular store with good discounts and buy even if you don’t find them on sale to beat the back-to-school rush.
2. You Can Delay the Basics
Some school items will probably drop in price the closer you get to the start of school — such as paper, pens, and notebooks. However, there are also other ways to save on these items, so don’t rush out early to buy the basics. Instead, focus on more specific types of supplies, like a particular calendar or science gear.
3. Scour Everything For Coupons
You probably have access to more coupons than you know. They come through direct mail sent to your mailbox, email spam that includes coupons for specific stores, and even those circulars that are inserted into newspapers. Be diligent about scouring everything and everywhere for coupons.
For example, you can even search online for coupons and discounts for specific items. For example, Amazon frequently offers coupons on school and office supplies, so make sure to check for those bargains. Also, make sure to keep track of coupon expiration dates on your favorite online calendar to make sure you do not let those slip by.
4. Keep Track of Good Deals to Price Match
As you compare prices and collect coupons, keep track of deals at office supply stores or retailers. Then, you can use those deals to negotiate discounts at other retailers that match prices. This is handy, mainly when supplies are limited or sold out at the store offering the initial deal.
5. Sell What You Don’t Need Before Buying
Make sure to go through old office supplies, equipment, and accessories to sell anything …….