Tuesday, 3 September 2013

Back-to-School Shopping – Don’t Break the Bank

With the end of the summer and the beginning of September comes the inevitable back-to-school shopping. Whether for new clothes, shoes, backpacks, or school supplies, the total bill for back-to-school shopping can often run in the hundreds – especially if you have more than one youngster heading back to the classroom. Once they get older and those clothes they want become big ticket items, the bills get even heftier. Here we offer some smart back-to-school shopping tips that will help keep you from breaking the bank. 

Tip #1: Make a list. Get the kids to help. Set a budget and stick to it. Clothes can get expensive, even with the sales, so separate wants from needs.

Tip #2: Do inventory. Many of the things you need are likely already in the house. Go through and see what can be reused. Backpacks and pencil cases can be repurposed with fun fabrics, old patches, fabric paints, etc. Pencils are the same no matter how old they are. And always hold off on other purchases until you get a list from the teacher of what will be needed.

Tip #3: Talk to other parents. Word of mouth counts for a lot as far as finding deals – you might be surprised about what sales are out there that you were not aware of. They may also be able to provide other money saving tips.

Tip #4: Buy the basics in bulk and make lunches. Packing brown bag lunches can save a lot of money, and buying your lunch snacks in bulk can make it even cheaper. Avoid added costs such as drinking boxes by spending a few dollars upfront for a fun reusable water bottle – healthier and cheaper.

But what if your back-to-school budget is a lot less forgiving than these tips compensate for? If you are drowning in debt, back-to-school shopping can come with a great deal more stress than just having to brave the crowds. The beginning of the school term often signals a fresh start for kids, so why not take this chance to make a fresh financial start for yourself. Getting out of debt is a good idea at any time of the year – but any motivation that spurs you into action is a good thing.

A smart option for reducing your debt, especially if you have tried on your own with little success, is to turn to the professionals for help. A professional debt consultant can not only help you better understand the various debt solutions out there and which one would best suit you, he or she can also help you develop a smart budget that is realistic. You don’t have to do it alone. Let the teachers at ‘debt school’ help you take control of your debt.

For more information about getting out of debt this September, please call DebtCare Canada by calling 1-800-890-0888 or visit us online at www.debtcare.ca.

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