STOCK UP: Tips When You're on a Budget

Author  Story and photograph from StatePoint

Back-to-school season can put a strain on household budgets. Here are some smart ways families can reduce costs as students head back to class:

shoppingEnd-of-season sales - Take advantage of end-of-season sales to stock up. This concept may not help you this fall, but it’s a great habit to adopt now for long-term savings. You can stock up on summer clothes now and great fall items once the weather gets chillier.

Add it up - Bigger ticket school supply items can cost you a pretty penny if you don’t comparison shop. For example, required tools, like a high-quality graphing calculator, can come with a price tag of $75 or more. Get more for your money with an affordable model.

Take stock, buy in bulk - Don’t buy things you already own and take advantage of bulk discounts for the stuff you need. Before making your shopping list, take stock of what school supplies you already have from the last school year.

For those necessities that kids will need all year long take advantage of bulk sales at discount stores and online retailers.

Go green - Brown bags, plastic baggies and plastic silverware are small expenses that add up quickly. Instead, opt for reusable lunch container alternatives and a one-time expense.