8 Ways to Save on Back-to-School Shopping

Don’t stress about school before it’s even started. Follow these easy school supply budgeting tips for peace of mind and A+ savings.

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Pencils with sharpener
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Take inventory

Go through drawers and cabinets to scrounge up the supplies you already have. Look for wear and tear on lunch boxes and backpacks to see if they’re reusable, and get your kids to try on all their clothes so you don’t need to buy a whole new wardrobe.

Heading back-to-school in September? Follow these four simple tips and give you and your parents a hassle-free start to the new school year.

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School supplies on wooden background
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Get the school’s list

Many schools put out a list of required supplies and sometimes these mention what the school provides (less and less these days), so don’t duplicate spending. It’s useful for planning a budget, but check with your students’ teachers too to make sure the list matches up and doesn’t include “recommended” (i.e., not really necessary) items, or items specific to classes your child isn’t taking.

Plus: 6 Back-to-School Study Solutions for Parents

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Mother and son on laptop
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Go through advertisements

Look for deals at department and big-box stores and figure out your shopping strategy. You may be able to save some time and gas by bringing the ads to stores that price-match their competitors.

Tennis superstar Milos Raonic shares the secret to saving 90 per cent of his income.

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Father and son using smartphone
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Check prices online

Depending on what you need, your best bet may be buying online. Try price comparisons at Amazon as well as retailer sites. Don’t forget to look for student discounts and coupon codes.

Keep these eight simple tips for safe online shopping in mind.

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Pencil crayons
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Buy in bulk and bundles

Look for values in combo deals and larger packages. Sometimes spending more up front is the best way to save in the long run. And while we know you’re not the one going back to school, don’t shy away from doing a little math to figure out the unit price—make sure you’re actually getting a bargain.

Here are 9 Purchases You Should Never Buy in Bulk.

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School lunch box
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Reward your children

If your children make some complaints about reusing last year’s lunchbox or want brand-name clothes, ask them to do extra chores and help out however they can in exchange for a few bucks toward nicer school wares.

Check out these 4 Simple Back-to-School Cooking Tips for Busy Families.

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Books on wooden background
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Look off the beaten path

If buying used is OK, there are more options than you might think. Don’t overlook yard sales, and nonprofits like The Salvation Army and Goodwill. Pay it forward to those groups (or other church and community drives) by donating what your kids can’t use anymore.

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Back-to-school shopping
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Shop throughout the year

If you want the best prices, never stop paying attention. Back-to-school shopping may well be the second biggest consumer spending event after the holidays, but the best sales are rarely the most publicized or popular ones.

Plus: 5 Small Ways You Can Help Your Child Beat Back-to-School Stress

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