Back To School Sales Part I

Back To School Sales have started this week, and there are some great deals out there. Don’t get carried away or left out. Here are a few tips to have the most productive shopping experience.

  1.  Check your supply closet. You may discover you still have five packages of nickel pencil erasers from last year.
  2. Check your school website for supply lists. You may not need any of the stuff on sale, or you might need all of it.
  3. Think about other uses for the sale items. Your three-year-old might not need a box of Sharpies, but if you are moving this year you might need them. Also, think about all your activities. Will you need extra folders or poster board for scouts, church, garage sales or sports teams? Birthday party treats are cheap and plentiful this time of year. Look for cute folders, erasers, crayons and other supplies to add to treat bags.
  4. Know when your tax-free shopping occurs, but don’t miss out on great deals waiting. I have noticed most items aren’t at a great price that week. You might miss quarter crayons waiting to save tax and pay a dollar for a box.
  5. Study the circulars and buy what you need for school or things you know you need.
  6. Be careful of stores that refund or rebate your purchases.  If a store has 100% refunded backpacks, but you don’t need one, it might not be a great deal. Many times the money is in the form of store credit, and will you use it in time? I hate to think you have $50 in store credit for a back pack you don’t need to a store where you don’t usually shop, and you forgot to use it in time.
  7. COUPONS! There are random coupons for things like tape, pens and markers this time of year. If you watch the websites and grab a Sunday paper you can save more money off a wide variety of supplies.
  8. As always, the price at one store on sale might be more expensive than another store has every day.
  9. How much is your time worth? A one-stop trip to Target or Walmart might save you time, money and frustration verses running all over town for penny erasers and nickel spiral notebooks. You have to look at your own enjoyment level for bargain shopping verses you satisfaction at a job completed.
  10. Let your kids pick out some things that don’t really matter. We all love the look of the Pottery Barn back pack, but your child would probably prefer Jack Sparrow or Hello Kitty. They only live once, so if it doesn’t really matter to you, just let it go this time.

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