“Back to school” can be a costly time of year, 2nd to Christmas. Back to school savings is something we want to hear. If you have multiple kids, multiply that cost by the number of children you have. With 3 kids, I have had to be frugal over the years. Here are some useful tips for saving during “back to school”.
Once in a while, I will pop into the 2nd hand store. When I went in this summer, I remembered I needed binders to organize my paperwork. Then I realized that the kids are going to need binders for school too!. Came out with about 8 binders for $2. They were in great condition too. Typically they would cost $2 each!
Depending what grade they are going in to, they would need different items for school. The younger ones would need crayons or colour pencils. I remember buying new pencils every year for a few years and getting hand me downs from the cousins as they would be buying new ones for school every year too. I realized that I had a ton of colour pencils and crayons so I would just sort out the colours, pick out what they needed for school and there were enough sets for everyone.
Quality is important. Many children seem to feel the need to have new backpacks every school year. When the kids were little, we purchased whatever backpack that was cheap. I now understood why kids had to have new backpacks every school year. They didn’t last. I finally decided we should invest in a good backpack for the kids. We purchased a MEC backpack for the oldest when he was in grade 4 and has used his for the last 7 years. What a great investment. $39 for the last 7 years, only $6 per year and 6 backpacks that didn’t go into the landfill. If you explain it to them, they’ll understand why they don’t a new one every year. Did you know that MEC has an awesome warranty program too? My other son had a zipper broken on his backpack and they replaced it!
BOGS also has a great warranty program for their shoes. I didn’t know that when I bought my first pair for my son. He was so hard on his boots the fist winter and the heel wore through. I was so disappointed especially since we paid so much for it. So I called them up and they said that they would replace the boot. I was pleasantly surprised and he got a new pair of boots for the 2nd winter especially since his shoe size didn’t change. So the little extra I paid for the original pair was a little less than having to buy 2 new pairs. Remember though you have to keep your original receipt.
If your child has to wear a uniform, check to see if the school offers 2nd hand uniforms. The kids usually have a few sets during the year but grow out of them so fast, so they may be still in really good shape. Once they are out of school, they wouldn’t want to keep wearing them. I have seen some school uniforms advertised on the online classified sites. You can save some money there.
I still like the idea of shopping for the kids at the second hand shops or the online classifieds. Here are some of my reasons why. You never know what you find. Especially when they grow so fast. I do shopping at the clearance section of the shops too. If your child is really into fashion, this section might not work for them. So if need the newest fashion, they’ll just have to limit what they can buy to save money. They don’t need 10 pairs of jeans of 10 sweaters…..
There are many ways to save at when the kids are headed back to school. Share some of your tips for back to school savings…. so others can learn too. Happy Saving….