If you want to save money on back to school shopping, you have to make a plan. The good news is that it’s pretty easy and with a little planning, you’ll be amazed at how much you can save on your back to school shopping this year. This post will walk you through 5 simple questions that will help you make a back to school shopping plan that saves you money.
HOW TO MAKE A BACK TO SCHOOL SHOPPING PLAN THAT SAVES YOU MONEY
I’m excited to be collaborating with some awesome ladies on a series of posts to help you get ready for this back-to-school season! We have created incredibly helpful articles on supplies shopping, saving money, meal planning ideas, organizing school clothes, free printables, helpful books, and much more!!!
I’ve linked to all of them at the end of this post so hang around until the end so you can benefit from this valuable Back-to-School Series.
The 5 simple questions in this post will help you make a back to school shopping plan that saves you the most money possible. You can grab your free back to school shopping planner here.
WHAT IS YOUR BUDGET?
It is super important to have a budget in place before you start shopping.
Spending can easily get out of control when we’re purchasing a few items here and a few items there.
The way to avoid that is to have a solid budget in place and track your spending along the way.
Your budget also helps you set priorities, determine what you can afford to buy now, and what you should hold off on.
WHAT DO YOU HAVE?
It can be tempted to start snagging those awesome deals when you see them, but before you buy anything you’ve got to get organized.
This means knowing what you already have.
Dig through last year’s supplies to see what’s still usable. Are there leftover pencils? A practically new box of crayons?
You may have more than you think!
WHAT DO YOU NEED?
Make a detailed list of exactly what you need to buy.
Look through supply lists from your kids’ teachers.
Make sure you know what they are specifically asking for (and any brands that are noted specifically.) Also, note how many of each item are needed.
Knowing what you need makes it easy to search for deals, learn prices, and find those items at the lowest price possible.
When you know what you need you can start making your shopping list.
WHEN DO YOU NEED IT BY?
The first day of school might not need to be your deadline for each and every thing.
Keep in mind that you probably don’t need to have every single little thing by the first day of school.
If you can’t find a good price on something on your list, wait it out!
Sometimes prices hit rock bottom when stores are trying to get rid of their overstocked inventory at the end of the back to school rush.
WHERE SHOULD YOU GET IT?
I want to challenge you to think beyond the one main store that you usually shop at.
Target is great, but they’re not going to have the best price on every single item.
This doesn’t mean going around to every store in your town.
Just check the weekly sales flyers.
You can look them up online or use the app Flipp to easily compare them.
If you’re not finding a great price in those flyers – look online!
Amazon sometimes offers great deals on back-to-school products.
Make sure to use Ebates to get cashback for any of your online purchases.
And for school supplies, sometimes the dollar store really is your best bet.
SHOP WITH YOUR PLAN
Once you have these 5 things figured out, you’ll be on your way to shopping for back to school with a money saving plan. So, make sure you know your budget, what you already have and what you’re going to need. Then, decide when you need each item buy and start searching for the best place to find them.
This free printable back to school shopping planner will help you get organized, stick to your budget, and rack up the savings.
Keep reading about Back to School tips with these super helpful posts from some of my amazing blogging friends!
Here are some more great posts that will help you this back to school season!
A Complete Back to School Supplies Checklist from Isabel at Family Life Blog
Save Time Every Morning With This Easy Way to Organize School Clothes from Erin at notice the LITTLE things
First and Last Day of School FREE Printable Signs from Alison at Just Add Confetti
10 Unconventional Back to School Books your kids will love from Jennifer at Happy Teacher Mama
10 Ways to Save Money on Back to School Shopping from Amy at Deliberately Here
Free Weekly Meal Planning Printables with Tons of Easy & Healthy Weeknight Family Dinner Ideas
Amy @ Deliberately Here says
I love your tip to look through your house before going shopping! It can be shocking how much carry-over stuff we seem to acquire over the years and it just keeps building up as we keep buying new stuff, so digging through your house before going shopping is a brilliant way to save money. 🙂
Love these tips! Shopping at pharmacies like Rite Aid, Walgreens, and CVS can also result in major deals on school supplies. I’ve been able to get school supplies super-cheap and also free in the past by using coupons at these stores. I also love the idea of planning ahead to stay on budget. That one tip alone has saved me SO much money. Great suggestions!
i love that you challenged us to ASK QUESTIONS in this post, instead of just listing advice. don’t get me wrong, advice is GREAT and you always have good money-saving advice. but the questions challenged me to take action and answer them, which means i remember them better. thank you for this help. i have been procrastinating on back to school shopping and now i feel a little less nervous about getting swindled! 🙂
Isabel @ Family Life Blog says
These tips are amazing! I never think to analyze what I have at home first. You’re so right. How many times have I bought things that I had unused boxes of, hidden somewhere in my house? So many times! For me, even though this is a simple thing to do, it was the greatest tip you shared. I feel like it was aimed specifically at me. Haha