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Serving members worldwide since 1935.
Henry MolinaWritten by:
Henry Molina
Lafayette Federal Credit Union
Vice President, Business Development

Back-to-school season is upon us, and for many of us this means preparing for one of the busiest shopping times of the year. Keeping your spending under control can be difficult in today’s economy, especially when it comes to your child’s needs. At Lafayette Federal, we want to help you support your family by offering these helpful strategies to best minimize costs while shopping for all your back-to-school needs. Read below to find out how to boost your savings and get the most out your school year. 

Back-to-School Shopping


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Put Money Aside Early

Good saving starts with good planning. When looking to maximize your savings this back-to-school season, one of the best things you can do is put yourself on a budget. Prior to your shopping, placing a specific sum of funds aside for your child’s supply list can help you easily avoid excess spending on any school-related products, supplies or services. This tactic can also aid you in being a financially conscious shopper by limiting you to products within your set price range. A great, simple way to securely store this money is by placing it into a separate account, such as a Lafayette Federal’s Savings AccountOpens in New Window. Accessible to you when you need it, our dividend-earning account can store your funds while you travel this summer and take care of your shopping needs when you return. Setting aside your money now can also earn you a great rate throughout the year, supplying adequate savings for when you need them. Open one today with a deposit of only $50! 

Find Deals From Retail Advertisements

Every year, stores and retailers offer a variety of back-to-school specific deals and discounts. Whether your child is in kindergarten or college, they can take advantage of these deals – today! Visit your preferred store’s app or website for weekly discount ads on school supplies, dorm needs, household items and more. Check your mailbox for any time-sensitive coupons and in-store sales on your school’s needs. Get ahead of your shopping by identifying these deals in advance and knowing what savings to be on the lookout for before you enter the store. Got time? Wait it out! Many retail stores offer discounts on surplus supply items following the first day, a great way to stock up later in the year on any last-minute items. 

Take Advantage of Tax-Free Weekends

Save big on your school purchases by taking advantage of your state’s tax-free days. Every summer, more than a dozen retail stores and companies across the US participate in select days of selling supplies, products and services without added tax fees. Getting the bulk of your shopping done at this time can potentially help you save hundreds of dollars, putting more money towards any later school year needs that may arise. Be mindful, however, that each state has their own days. Find out the dates of your location today.  Opens in New Window

Have Your List Prepared Ahead of Time

With the excitement of store deals and promotions, getting swayed by the appeal of a new product is too easy. Help yourself dodge a hefty bill by preparing your supply list ahead of time. Like budgeting, this tip can help you stay committed to avoiding overspending habits and stick to purchasing only the items you need. If need be, designate a specific portion of your shopping budget to unlisted useful items you may find along the way. Doing this you can still purchase any spontaneous items without leaving a painful impact on your wallet. Before you leave, review the list provided by your child’s school to decide what items must be bought and which optional items may not be needed. Many big-box store companies offer recommended supply lists online based upon the needs of local schools. You can utilize both to create your own shopping agenda. 

Use a Credit Card for Bigger Purchases

Back-to-school shopping does not always mean crayons and glue sticks. If your child is older, they may be in the market for larger, more expensive gadgets headed into the new year. No need to wait, take those items off your wish list and buy them now! Using a credit card for your larger back-to-school purchases can provide you with the upfront funds now and pay it off at a manageable rate over time. With a Lafayette Federal MastercardOpens in New Window you can utilize credit limits of up to $50,000, and simultaneously earn reward points toward various products while doing so. With no annual fee, maximizing your savings this year while having the items you want is more accessible than ever. 

Check Your Home First

Though it may seem obvious, one commonly overlooked back-to-school shopping hack is to check the resources in your own home. While buying everything on your child’s school supply list may seem like the best thing to do, you may find yourself buying extra items you do not need. Do yourself a favor this year and check your storage room for any excess items from your list. Rummaging through your child’s supplies from previous years is also a great idea to consider before beginning your shopping. You may find that items such as notebooks, pens or erasers are in good condition and can be reused for the upcoming year. Household items like paper towels, dishwashing liquid or sponges may also be found in surplus around the house. 

Save For Back to School With Lafayette Federal Credit Union

Shopping for your child can certainly add up, but back-to-school purchasing doesn’t need to mean breaking the bank. Utilizing these methods can help you save the most while shopping this fall and supply your child with their needs in a way that is affordable to you. Plan ahead with Lafayette Federal by setting up a Savings AccountOpens in New Window or Credit CardOpens in New Window with us today. 

Not a Lafayette Federal member yet? You can become a member by completing an online membership applicationOpens in New Window.

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