This back to school shopping on a budget post is sponsored by Ibotta. Thank you for supporting Pennies Into Pearls by using my links at no additional cost to you.
Do you have a list of school supplies sitting on your counter staring you straight in the face? Holy cow! All those little purchases can add up crazy fast! Which is why I am your girl to show you how to do back to school shopping on a budget.
5 Tips for Back to School Shopping on a Budget
Here’s what needs to be done.
- You look at your bank account numbers.
- You set how much you are able to dedicate to back to school shopping.
- Now I’ll share with you how to make that shopping list and your numbers work in harmony.
Sound like a plan? I think so. Let’s get to it!
Your Money Saving Tool!
The first thing you need to do is equip yourself with the tools that will help you save as much money as possible! One of the best tools for the job is the mobile app Ibotta!
The app is 100% free to use and let’s you earn cash back on qualifying purchases. Within a single app on your phone there are multiple ways to earn cash back.
- In-store: Ibotta has so many cash back offers to help you save money on items your schools will probably be in need of and don’t forget about back to school lunches!
To redeem it’s as easy as adding the offers to your account, do your shopping, upload your receipt, and you earn your cash back!
- Online: Ibotta makes it super easy to earn cash back when getting your shopping done online this year. It all starts within the app by selecting which store you want to shop. That stores website will automatically be opened and you shop as normal.
Once your purchase is complete Ibotta will take care of the rest and transfer your rewards to your account.
- Bonus- Pay With Ibotta: This is really cool! You are able to link your debit card within the app and can earn up to 10% cash back on your entire purchase at popular stores and restaurants. No coupons, exclusions, or fine print — Just instant cash back.
This is the second year in a row that I decided to do all our back to school shopping on a budget online. We did it all through Ibotta offers and earned cash back with every purchase!
Shopping from the couch AND still saving money? Now that makes this mama happy! I sat with each kid one on one and let them choose their favorite supplies. It was a lot of fun!
Make this back to school season seamless (and even fun!) with cash back from Ibotta. Download the app and start earning today.
Write It All Out
The next thing that seems simple but surprisingly not many people do, is to make a detailed list BEFORE you shop! Do not head into the store or start scrolling online until this step is completed! Promise me Pearl!
Write down every item you need AND the estimated cost for each item. That’s an important part! This way there are no surprises at checkout. If something ends up being a different cost, adjust your list and make sure you are sticking to your allowance that you set.
To make this process a lot easier for ya, I’ve put together is shopping list that covers all the basics that most kids will need. Use it as a guideline for your back to school shopping on a budget.
Click the image below to download your free printable!
Now that you have a grand total of estimated costs for your shopping, it’s time to evaluate. Do you have enough cash to cover it all? Don’t forget to factor in savings opportunities like when you use Ibotta!
If you need to make some room in the budget the best thing to do is to prioritize your list. With the most necessary supplies at the top.
Minimize Your List
Then look for ways to cut things off your list by repurposing old items you might have around your house already. If you have a bag of miscellaneous pencils, that will work!
Maybe you just bought some new summer clothes that will last a couple more months as school starts. That way it gives you a few more weeks to save up and take advantage of future sales.
Start Saving For Next Year
Now is the time to start planning for back to school 2020. You’re probably thinking I am crazy right now. You have to trust me on this one! Planning now is going to make this time next year so much more fun!
Look at your back to school spending for this year. Was it enough? Did you wish you had more wiggle room? Maybe it was just right. Either way, use that number as a guideline for how much to start saving now for next year.
Take this years shopping total and divide it by 12. Wa-la, you now know how much money you need to be setting aside each month in order to be well prepared for shopping next year. Goodbye stress!
Use these back to school shopping on a budget tips and you can send the kids to class feeling confident that they are fully stocked up with school supplies and ready for a new year of learning!
Talk to you soon! Xoxo