School Supplies – What To Buy or Not To Buy? That Is the Question

Paper, crayons, No. 2 Pencils, calculators, flash drives…the list goes on and on…School supply lists are ridiculous – not to mention they can cost a
pretty penny! Teachers’ budgets are so constrained nowadays that now families bear the burden of purchasing and finding the exact school supplies for their kids’ classes. But, buying school supplies does not need to break the bank.

Here are a few tips for saving some moolah on this educational undertaking:

1.    Have a List.

Yes, schools and teachers handout lists of specific items that their students are required to bring to class every day. You know, the blue, 1-1/2” three-ring binder with pockets and dividers, the Prang crayons, and the 1G flash drive…there are times when you have a heck of a time trying to find some of these things! And some of these items are the same items from years past. One way to curb your spending is to take inventory of the supplies that you have left over from last year (and maybe the year before). Put aside pencils that still have lead and erasers,pens that still have ink, unopened loose leaf paper packs…and cross them off your school list. Then make a separate list of the
supplies not crossed off.Those are the items you buy. Buy only what you need. You’ll be surprised how much you’ll save.

2.    Shop at the Right Time.

Plan to go school supply shopping when the Back-to-School sales start popping up – usually after 4thof July. Also, take advantage of Tax-Free Holidays. Check to see if you state holds a Tax-Free Holiday. Remember to keep receipts for exchanges in case your school or teacher’s requirements change.

3.    Shop Used or Resale

Kids can’t but want certain items that are the “in” thing right now. Or maybe you are having trouble finding a certain supply that is brand new. Try shopping used or resale, such as Ebay or Amazon. You’ll find what you need and prices won’t be that bad.

4.    Buy Quality Items.

Cheaper items do not always save you money. Sometimes when supplies are cheaper, they do not last the wholeschool year. Then you end up having to buy another one of the same item (or two or three).

5.    Personalize

Everyone is their own person and they want to show it – whether subtly or in the spotlight. Students can take plain and basic supplies and personalize them with stickers of their favorite characters…Is it Minions, Batman, Minecraft? Or all of them?Teenagers can printout pictures their favorite celebrity (Harry Styles, Zac Efron, or Ansel Elgort, anyone?) and make a collage on their notebook or planner. Or how about a favorite show like Stranger Things, Game of Thrones, or Gotham? Whatever their fancy, they can show it however they want.

Other ways you can save money on school supplies throughout the year is to remember to use your credit card or store points and/or rewards to purchase things for school and to put small amount of money aside each week or month for the next school year. School supply shopping…you either love it or hate it…either way you can save money doing it.

For more tips to save more and spend less, check out our other posts .





Michaels Art Supplies


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