Dave Ramsey’s 6 Best Tips for Affordable Back-to-School Shopping – The Motley Fool | Vette Leader

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If you have kids who are going to school soon, you need to read these tips.


Important points

  • Returning to school can be expensive for parents as children need many things.
  • There are ways to save money when you start school.
  • Dave Ramsey shared some key tips including prioritizing and shopping strategically.

The start of a new school year can be an exciting time for both parents and children. It can also be an expensive time, as children usually need a lot of things to prepare for going back to the classroom.

The good news is that you can often save money when you start school. Financial expert Dave Ramsey has made a number of suggestions to help you do this. Here are six of his top tips that you might want to follow.

1. Set your priorities

Ramsey’s best advice is to make sure you’re prioritizing what you’re actually spending money on, rather than simply buying whatever you or your child deem necessary.

“Make a list of needs and rank them from most urgent to least.” Ramsey solutions blog reads. “A new pair of shirts and a pair of shoes could be at the top of the list, and the new homework iPad at the bottom.”

Ramsey believes this is crucial because if you can’t afford to pay for all the back-to-school purchases you want, you can spend your money on the essentials first and put off the others for later. Otherwise, if you don’t prioritize and just start shopping, you could end up charging your credit cards for something essential because you’ve spent all your money on things that weren’t so necessary.

2. Check what you already have

Ramsey also recommends taking stock of your current supplies — including clothes your kids already own and any used items available — before you start shopping. He warns that it can take time to sort through everything and see what can be reused and what you really need to buy, but it’s worth the time to save money.

3. Set a budget

Since Ramsey is a big proponent of budgeting to solve many financial problems, it’s probably not surprising that he advocates incorporating back-to-school shopping into your budgeting process.

He suggests creating two separate categories in your budget: one for one-off purchases you need to make at the start of the school year and another for ongoing expenses you pay for throughout the year, such as school supplies. B. Club Fees.

By budgeting for these things, you have “permission to spend” and don’t get into debt because you’re faced with unexpected school expenses.

4. Don’t buy everything at once

Ramsey believes it can be easier to spread out your groceries than to buy everything you need at the start of the school year.

“Buy a little this month, buy a little next month,” he suggested. “Don’t blow the budget in August. Not only is that a risky money decision, but your child will likely be an inch taller by October. Then it goes back on the shelves.”

5. Be strategic about where you shop

Ramsey not only offered advice on when to shop, but also suggested where to go. In particular, he thinks the Dollar Store is a great place to buy many back-to-school items like planners, pens, and billboards.

6. Note that the item with the lowest price is not always the best

In conclusion, perhaps Ramsey’s most important piece of advice is not to confuse a low price with the best deal.

“An item can be cheap in more ways than one: cost and quality,” he said. “If something is cheap, it can be good value. But if something is low quality, it’s not worth your money. Especially if you have to completely replace it again in a few months.”

When you buy items that your child uses every day, you want them to be durable, quality, and long-lasting. While this may mean budgeting a little more up front and shopping a little more carefully to find the right product, it’s worth it.

Hopefully, by following these tips, your back to school shopping experience will be a successful one that won’t break your budget.

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