Stock Up for School NOW for Savings

Think you’ll save more money by waiting? Want to window shop a bit more before committing? Are you considering waiting until after school starts before picking up all the necessary supplies? If so, you’ll likely lose out on tidy sum of savings. The time to stock up for school and still save money is now, not later. Keep reading to find out exactly why and how to do it.

Back to school

Stores are on a schedule set by their distributors, not you. Sure, you may not believe it and your child most definitely won’t want to hear it, but “back to school” sales, displays and supplies are available now. It may very well still be the middle of summer, but chances are Halloween merchandise and even end-the-year holiday stock is closing in on the back supply room of stores everywhere, pushing the plethora of school supply stock out on the shelves now. Putting off picking up your child’s school stuff will likely leave you in a pinch to pick from what’s leftover.

Know when to take the purchasing plunge. Fortunately, there are rarely surprises when it comes to back-to-school sales. More often than not, year after year, the same retailers offer the same or very similar pricing on a variety of products. Get to know the pattern, beware of what the best prices are and jump accordingly. Don’t make the mistake of waiting too long for a better price to come around because it may never happen. Retailers carry a surplus stock of such supplies for a limited amount of time and advertise special pricing to move the products accordingly. Be sure you’re in the know regarding when to buy (hint: Now!) in order to snag the best supplies at the biggest savings.

Know what to buy and what to leave on the shelf. Don’t assume you have to wait until school actually starts to figure out what exactly your child will need. Many schools and individual teachers post school supply lists online for your shopping convenience. Some retailers have even gotten in on the act by proactively seeking out these lists, printing multiple copies and strategically placing them arranged by school and grade level within their seasonal “back-to-school” section. Arming yourself with such a list well in advance will not only help ensure you pick up everything your child will need, but will also help protect your bottom line from unnecessary purchases.

Think beyond the start to stretch the savings. It’s a pretty good bet that your child will likely need more pens, pencils, crayons, paper and the like as the school year marches on. It’s an even better bet that you’re not going to see better prices on these items than what’s available right now. To help stretch the savings for supply needs throughout the year, grab a plastic tote or bin and fill it up now for pennies on the dollar. When mid-year comes around and your child or his or her teacher is requesting more stuff, you’ll be all too happy to reach into your ready stash of school supplies.

Photo credit: craigwortman

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Author Info

This post was written by Shannon M. Medisky. Shannon is an educator turned parent turned writer and focuses on sharing new and innovative ways to not just survive, but thrive on empty. Visit ThrivingOnEmpty.com to learn more. Her newest book The Complete Idiot's Guide to Stretching Your Dollar is available in bookstores now.

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