After paying for tuition and room and board, spending your hard-earned money on more school supplies is the last thing you want to do. Here are some tips that saved me from spending more than I needed to each school year.
1. Do A Supply Sweep
It’s time to clean out your closet! You probably have a surplus of school supplies lying around your house without even knowing it. Round up all of the supplies that you already have, and put them in a central location. After that, start looking through your desk drawers, underneath the couch, in the basement and anywhere forgotten items may be stored. After your supply sweep, you should have a clearer picture of what you actually need to buy, saving you from making any unnecessary purchases.
2. Use Coupons
Have you ever noticed your mailbox and email filling up with coupons this time of year? Take advantage of that! All of those savings add up. If you gather up a bundle of coupons to a bunch of different places and don’t want to drive all over, consider taking them to Walmart, where they offer coupon matching. Also, don’t forget about those helpful coupon apps!
3. Buy In Bulk
The prices on school supplies sometimes rise in late August and January. This is because college semesters start shortly after. There is a large demand for the supplies, and the rise in price reflects that. Consider avoiding these peak times and buy in bulk before or after the rush, when prices are discounted as much as 50%-75% off! You can even pool your money together with friends when buying in bulk for even more savings.
4. Garage Sales, Thrift Shops And Consignment Stores
One person’s trash might be a college student’s treasure. Finding supplies might not always be a guarantee, but when you do find something, there is potential for some great bargains. You can find anything from backpacks to clothing to unique dorm decor. It’s a gamble, but spotting something brand new for cheap makes it worth it.
5. Bucks For Books
Head over to the special Bucks for Books page on the Young & Free Maine website and enter to win $500, $300 or $200 toward your college textbooks! Submit your entry by September 15th for your chance to win! The winners will be selected by random draw, and will be featured on the Young & Free Maine website. For an additional entry, head over to Instagram to participate in the Bonus Bucks Battle. Simply post a photo of yourself and your school to Instagram, follow Young & Free Maine and use the hashtag #Bucks4BooksME. Good luck!
What tips do you have on saving during the back to school season? I’d love to know!