Back-to-school season comes around the same time every year, but it tends to sneak up on parents – and their bank accounts. With inflation and up-and-down gas prices, back-to-school is shaping up to be an even bigger challenge this year. Whether the students in your life go to elementary school, college, or somewhere in between, it is critical to budget carefully to get through the early fall and give your students the best start on their academic year.
Here are some ways to create and stick to your back-to-school budget:
Write your budget down in advance
Plan your spending ahead of time and do it in writing. Make sure you stick to your budget; once you have it written down, don’t let yourself change it unless absolutely necessary.
Plan what you are going to purchase
Inventory what you already have and start putting together a list of things you are still going to need. Too many of us get into the habit of just buying everything new without checking to see what is already on hand.
Use websites, smartphone apps, and magazine ads to compare prices. Office supply stores are a good inclusion on your list for school shopping. As well as dollar tree and the discount aisles of your local big-box retailer.
Know the difference between cheap and value
This is important when you buy clothing and supplies that’ll take a lot of wear and tear. You can afford to buy cheap when it comes to things like pencils and paper since your kids are going to use those items up throughout the school year. Save your extra dollars for items that need to last.
Hoping to learn more about financing furniture, tires, appliances, and more? Check out these articles to get up to speed.
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