Students can save on back to school supplies

School supplies will not cost students and parents much money once they look for easy ways to save.

School supplies will not cost students and parents much money once they look for easy ways to save.

Sonia Kim, Eastside Webmaster

It is the most wonderful time of the year—the time to go back to school shopping. With the start of the new school year, many families are spending a lot of money on school supplies, clothes and electronics.

According to the National Retail Federation, the average family will spend over $630 this season, with total consumer spending topping $72 billion.

Laura Rowley, author of the book Money and Happiness, said some parents could save half as much by being proactive with sales and wardrobe recycling.

Although these values may be surprising, there are different ways students can become savvy back to school shoppers and save a couple, or maybe, a few hundred dollars.

To start off, it never hurts to shop at home first before heading to the stores. There is not a quicker and cheaper way of obtaining supplies than by rummaging through old boxes to find what could be useful that is already somewhere at home. By simply searching around the house, families can find barely used notebooks, pencils and hand-me-downs. This is also a great chance for students to inventory and decide what they really need so that no unnecessary items are bought. Through this simple method, students can save money and more importantly help the environment by reusing materials.

Another way of potentially saving some money and effort is by taking advantage of free price comparison apps. With all of the new apps available in the iTunes App Store and Google Play Store, students can use different apps including Favado, Shopsavvy and Salesorter that can help them find better prices and shop in a simpler, easier fashion.

Accenture, a multinational management consulting company, has conducted a survey that concluded people who shop without a list pay as much as 23% more than those who use a list. Planning beforehand can allow students to avoid purchasing any items that are not on their lists no matter how cool or cheap they are.

While students might have shopped improvidently in previous years, it is never too late to become perhaps a bit more economical.