It’s Back to School Shopping Time and Time to Save Money

The new school season is quickly approaching and now is the time to put into
practice those good stewardship skills and goal setting practices learnt in the

Shopping this time of year can be overwhelming so the best thing to do is
make a plan.  The old saying applies here just as much as it does anywhere
else in life – if you aren’t making a plan, you are planning to fail.  You
work hard for money so spend it wisely using the following tips:

  1. Get your children involved in the process.  The more responsibility
    and input they have, the more likely they will be happy with the outcome.
  2. Start your planning now. Before you know it school will be here and you
    don’t want to be shopping with the last minute crowd, stressing yourself and
    your children out. Pressure usually results in poor decision making and can
    be overwhelming. Breaking up the tasks is also more restful and fun.
  3. Make a list of all the school year needs from clothing, outer wear,
    sport equipment to working supplies such as calculators, binders, paper,
    pens, etc.
  4. Go shopping in your own closets first.  De-clutter them by putting
    outgrown clothing in good condition in the charity donation box or bag you
    have ready to be filled as you go through this process. Consider a clothing
    swap if you have friends with children around the same age.
  5. Inventory the clothing you have and make a list of what you need to fill
    in the gaps. Be specific, i.e. yellow top to go with brown and black jeans,
    4 pairs of blue socks, etc.
  6. Before spending any money on clothing, set a budget and decide how much
    an outfit should cost per wear. If you want a top to cost you $1.00/wear and
    the purchase price is $50 you will need to wear the top 50 times to meet
    your goal.
  7. For school working supplies such as binders, paper and pens, go through
    your leftover supplies from last year. Notebooks which were lightly used can
    be redecorated with stickers and stencils for a new look.
  8. Inventory what you have and make a list of what supplies you still
    need. Be specific and stick to the list.
  9. Watch for bargains and promotions in the weekly fliers. Clip out what
    you want.  If you are in store and a competitor is offering an item at
    a lower price, ask the store you are in if they will match the price.
    Remember, to get something you need to ask. If the say no, you are no worse
    off then when didn’t ask but you can only be better off if you do.
  10. Buy the basics in bulk. Items such as paper, pens and pencils. Put them
    in a clear storage container and label it. Decide when discount store, no
    name brands are appropriate and when they aren’t. Some people find brand
    name markers last longer, etc. You need to decide before you shop on what
    you are willing to compromise on.

Remember to have fun using this as a time to bond with your children.
So make a plan, work it and enjoy what is  left of the summer.

For other money saving ideas to get you on the road to better wealth visit

Margaret L. Good

Certified General Accountant

Brampton Board of Trade Small Business of the Month January 2009

Two Time Barnes & Noble Best-Selling Author List

Brampton, Ontario


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