Everything cost more money these days. From the groceries to feed your family, the kid-friendly activities your children engage in, to the gasoline you need to run your vehicles, your wallet feels the added stress. Sadly, these things leave a lot of moms and dads with a whole lot less to work with.
Added to the financial burden that is being felt by so many parents is the responsibility to prepare your children for school. And that costs a lot of money, too.
To help those confronted with hardship or those who simply want to avoid spending more than they need to, I’ve created a list of ideas and reminders for moms and dads to use to help ease the financial burden associated with purchasing school supplies. I call this list
“The Ten Commandments of Budget Wise Shopping”.
I hope my list below will help you.
Commandment Number 1
Recycle, recycle, recycle. It isn’t necessary to purchase new school supplies. Items like the durable pencil boxes and binders that were boughten in the past can be used for another school year. And pencils, pens, and crayons that you already have at your house can be repurposed for the new school year, too.
Commandment Number 2
Don’t compromise the quality of the supplies your child needs for the extremely low prices you pay at some dollar stores. You need to make sure the products will last long enough to serve your child’s purpose throughout their school year.
Commandment Number 3
Communicate with your child’s school and new teachers to find out what supplies the school will provide. This will prevent you from making duplicated purchases that your children won’t need.
Commandment Number 4
Stay organized by remaining prepared to make wise school purchases throughout the year. This means that you should shop off-season for the next season. You can buy seasonal clothing and outerwear as well as school supplies when the demand for these things isn’t as high. The prices will be much lower.
Commandment Number 5
There is no shame in using consignment shops. Some of your child’s shoes and clothing that are still in good condition but no longer useable for them can be sold to these shops. In turn, you can make some purchases for your children at these stores using the credit you earned from the merchandise you brought in. Or, you can simply use the payment you are given to make new school purchases elsewhere.
Commandment Number 6
There is also no shame in visiting a quality thrift store. Some high-end thrift stores sell new merchandise with the original store tags still attached to them. And some of these thrift stores also sell high-end items that have never been used before. You just need to know where to shop and be willing to shop there.
Commandment Number 7
Many stores offer layaway services. This enables you to select purchases that the store will hold for an extended period of time as you make incremental payments until your merchandise is completely paid for. Placing your child’s school supplies in the layaway is a logical way for many parents to shop.
Commandment Number 8
Organize or participate in a school clothing exchange with family or friends. Such events can be organized within communities and churches and can prove to be beneficial to families. This is especially important to do if your child needs to wear expensive uniforms at their school. A school-wide exchange program could benefit many families.
Commandment Number 9
Foster creativity within your home by engaging in DIY (Do It Yourself) school supply projects with your children. Pencil boxes can be repurposed or created by painting, adding wallpaper pieces, or gluing bling to them. Children and young people who enjoy sewing can create their tote bags. (These creative students can even sew some of their school clothes, too!) Unique book covers can be created as well. The possibilities remain endless for creating school supplies at home.
Commandment Number 10
Many communities, schools, churches, and organizations host school supply giveaway events before the school year begins. Parents should be encouraged to find out where and when these giveaway events are held and they should accompany their children to them. Whether it’s bookbags, lunch boxes, pencils, or technology supplies, there is a financial saving any time school supplies are given to your children.
The Last Word
Photo by Element5 Digital on Unsplash
Shopping for school supplies can be stress-inducing for parents with a tight budget. However, it doesn’t have to be.
The “Ten Commandments of Budget Wise School Shopping” gives parents keys to unlocking the door that leads to financial savings. Plus, it will make the school shopping experience happier for moms and dads.
So, happy school shopping!
This post was previously published on medium.com.
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