5 Back to School Budget Tips: Maximize your Money!

by Sami

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It seems like back to school lists keep getting bigger and bigger these days, even though our back-to-school budgets are getting smaller and smaller. But have no fear! I’m here to help you maximize your money for this season.

Even those of you who don’t have kids (or have moved beyond the back-to-school years) will find great money-saving tips that you can take advantage of too. Plus, I’m sharing the discount codes I mentioned on TV below…

Back to School Budget Tips

Back-to-School Coupon Codes & Deals

First, I want to highlight some of the coupon codes and incredible deals I mentioned on TV:

Right now, you can get a Microsoft Office Home & Business Lifetime License for just $39.99. That’s a savings of over 80%! (Kepp in mind this is a one-time purchase with NO monthly fees)

Save $50 off SleepyHeads Mattress Toppers – these are the BEST!

Make sure everything you send to school with your child actually comes home. Use code BACKPACK to save 25% off any customized school label pack from Name Bubbles. (Hurry, this deal ends 8/17)

Don’t miss my guide on how to label things for college!

Keep an eye on office supply & drugstores over the coming weeks for Penny/Extreme deals

Office supply stores (like StaplesOffice Max & Office Depot) will be competing for your business by offering a lot of freebies and penny deals, so this is when you want to stock up for your back to school list or even home office supplies.

Ebates Back to School Deals

Shop online to save time & gas

Online shopping has a TON of benefits. First of all, you don’t have to leave your house, which saves you time and gas.

Save even more money when you use promo codes and go through sites like Rakuten to get cash back on your purchases and take advantage of special coupon codes!

If you do want the experience of in-store shopping, I still recommend doing your homework online before you go. Just type the school supply you’re looking for into a Google Search. It will return with different prices at a variety of stores. If your favorite store isn’t the cheapest, just show customer service and they will often price match when it’s the exact item.

Pay attention to quality/lifetime guarantees

You may pay a little more for things like pants, shoes & backpacks up front, but you’ll find you won’t have to spend unnecessary funds replacing such necessary items halfway through the school year. We love Lands End for those quality items, but you will even see the quality difference in markers and other school supplies from brands like Faber-Castell.

Ask the school if you can send school supplies in stages throughout the year

If your back-to-school budget is tight now, this can be a great solution. You could also offer to buy a multi-pack of one item (like colored pencils) that will cover the entire class while giving you a discount on bulk pricing and ultimately cost you less than if you had to buy individual school supplies for your child.

You can find great multi-packs like this (and ALL school supplies) at a great discount on SchoolSpecialty.com.

Shop Back to School Gear on Zazzle

Homeschoolers are teachers too!

Don’t forget to ask for educator discounts if you’re a homeschooler. You’ll find discount cards everywhere from craft to computer stores. Even clothing retailers offer an extra percentage off for teachers.

Don’t forget Tax-Free Weekend savings too (it typically happens the last weekend of July/first weekend of August). That means that eligible clothing and school supplies for $100 or less and for computers for $1500 or less are all tax-free. You can see if your state is one of the sixteen states participating in tax-free back-to-school too.

Stock up for your home

You don’t need a child in school to save big right now. Think about it: school supplies don’t expire!

One of my top back-to-school savings tips I recently shared on Insider was to stock up on supplies for your home and office. Things like storage bags, printer paper, tape, scissors and even home paper goods (like paper towel) are drastically reduced in price this month.

Consider your crafting and wrapping needs for the holidays. Buy in bulk and stock up in your garage or storage closet if you need to; these deals are worth it.

Back to School Shopping: Where to Save vs. Where to Splurge

Even if you don’t have kids in school, anyone can save on clothing, supplies and even electronics! This is also a great time to make your donation dollar stretch further, especially when stocking up on items for Operation Christmas Child.

By using the tips I mentioned, families can easily save enough money to buy extra supplies for OCC shoebox gifts. More information on how you can live better AND give back is available at FamilyMoneyMinute.com.

back to school supply cake - stacked tower with school supplies

Did you LOVE the School Supply Cake I made for my Talk of the Town segment? 

Watch my other Talk of the Town segments to find more great tips!

5 Back to School Budget Tips

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